Saturday, 11 December 2010

Parking and Collaboration

At Thursday's full council meeting, the proposal to convert several free council car parks into pay-and-display ones resulted in well over two hours of often heated debate. This followed the Executive's original proposals being 'called-in' to scrutiny in November and then sent to the Full Council on Thursday.

Petitions against the proposal, signed by over 3,000 islanders, were presented to the meeting and several councillors argued effectively against the changes, citing the effect parking charges have on local businesses - especially in our struggling town centres. The full Daily Post report on the meeting is here.

As a result of this backlash there will now be a complete review of the council's car parks policy in the New Year. I hope that the Executive will now take this opportunity to consider how it can adjust parking charges on all its sites so as to support local, town centre shops and businesses by making visiting them less inconvenient for potential shoppers. Shops in Holyhead and Llangefni in particular have suffered for many years due to:

  • the reduction of street-side parking places;
  • the inconvenience of having to pay to park in town centre car parks even for short periods; and 
  • the fact that supermarket car parks are large and free.

Indeed, to illustrate this point, just last year, Holyhead attracted considerable attention in the Daily Telegraph, the Mirror, the BBC, and other national media for having the most empty town centre shops in the United Kingdom. As pointed out above there are many reasons for this, but the Council has in its power one important lever: the ability to adjust car parking charges to make visiting Anglesey's town centres hasslefree.

Accordingly I would urge the Council to use the opportunity of a full review to adjust parking charges such that the first half- or full-hour was free (or just a nominal charge of 10p as in other places in North Wales). This would make visiting town centre businesses a far less troublesome experience for car users, would undoubtedly provide a boost for local shops, and would also demonstrate to Anglesey's small businesses that it is not "some kind of massive monster that just wants to fleece them" (in the words of Cllr Ken Hughes of Llanfaethlu) but a forward thinking and business-friendly organisation.


In other non-Parking news, Thursday's Full Council meeting also unanimously voted in favour of Carl Sargeant's order suggestion that Anglesey County Council should collaborate more with Gwynedd Council in order to share resources and save costs. In response Aberffraw's Cllr Glyn Jones made the following pithy plea for more collaboration within the council itself too:

"We have just heard of the need to collaborate with other Authorities, let us start by collaborating here in this Chamber today. Let us make history today in this Chamber, let us put Anglesey in the Media with good news ... Let all 40 Members collaborate, let's form an Alliance of 40 Members to move this Council in the direction that the electorate of Anglesey expects and deserves of us."

Hear, hear.


kp said...

40 members ..... that is simply way too many for such a sparsely populated island.

Why doesn't someone speak up and suggest at least 50% resign immediately.

Who is wanting to keep paying for all these infective 'members'?

County Councillor Barrie Durkin said...

I would be extremely interested in any evidence you or anyone else has showing (not through hear-say or innuendo) that members are ineffective and name them with the evidence.

Anonymous said...

We are not allowed to name and shame them here, the rules and protecol of this site forbid it, however, we are not stupid, we do realise that the Council we have, is only heading in one direction and that's out,why? Because we have lost FAITH and we do not TRUST them anymore.

The car parking and other damage limitation exercises that they ,create to make nice spin and give themselves a nice bit of publicity is just that, spin.

We don't need it, we don't want it, we just want new blood, new ideas, new principles, the old ideas have let us all down, badly, we are technically at rock bottom.

And that is all thanks to the fools we call Councillors, they are the ones who have let us down, alongside the idiots who work there, they too have ignored us,they have in effect created a system that has destroyed us, from the inside out.
We need jobs never mind car park charges, jobs, jobs, jobs!!

kp said...

Just the shear fact that there are forty of them more than demonstrates such.

And the current state of the island doesn't do much to suggest 'effectiveness' within the membership of the county council.

Open your eyes, man!

Anonymous said...

The only ones I've come across at the Council who are ineffective are Officers.
They are the ones who cause the trouble.
There the ones who breach our Human Rights.
They are why we now have intervention because they got caught out and they just don't like like it up em.
And what have we got now? Bloody Trouble maker DAVID BLOODY BOWLES.

Anonymous said...

Why don't they collaborate and talk to the people first, then try and get on with us, instead of ignoring us and making decisions that involve us without collaborating? Car Parks? what about jobs?

Anonymous said...

Because you don't matter, that's why.

How dare you ask such anti-commie questions. How dare you challenge this authority with such suggestions.

That's how Councillors are treated so what chance do you think you've got?

Anonymous said...

No need for the apology. we are both on the same wave length. If it helps the end is nigh. Very big trouble on it's way.

Anonymous said...

I am sure, that I write for the majority of writers here, but nothing would give me greater pleasure than having this mockery of a Council, being disbanded, and the whole of the administration, all of it, not part of, but the whole lot, taken over by the Welsh Assembly.

Then, and only then, after a period of time, and after total scrutiny and examination of the goings on, maybe a trial or two, can we actually move on. In fact, the sooner the better, I know Carl Sargeant cares about his job, but it's about time he started caring for the people of Anglesey. Because Anglesey doesn't care about it's people.

Anonymous said...

David Bowles, very clever man. History shows that David Bowles antagonise as many people as possible to create a acrimonious response, then shouts I'm being bullied and gets big pay off.
He did it Lincolnshire. twice and got £700.000 and he'll do it here.

Anonymous said...

....not before you slay him with your quilled pen Bazzer!!!

Glyn Pritchard-Jones said...

FAO Ken Hughes, Llanfeuthlu

" forward thinking and business-friendly organisation"

Spot on, we'done, good words.

However, the Council is not business friendly and it has to change and become private sector friendly because WAG has run out of money and the private secror is a job and wealth creator.

Crank the engine and drive in the right direction Anglesey please!

Anonymous said...

To Glyn Pritchard-Jones

The only direction this Council is going is down the pan.

No jobs, no future, the monkeys are running the zoo.

Anonymous said...

Bowles had a telegram from the Queeen today, his political ideas are exactly a hundred years old today

Anonymous said...

If we all shout loud enough, do you think Commie Bowles and McGregor might just take the hint and go away quietly.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Paul Williams said...

I have deleted a large number of abusive comments made by a what appears to be a small number of commenters. I welcome debate - but keep it within the bounds of decency. The rules of commenting on this blog are clear and have haven't changed, if you follow the rules your comments won't get deleted.

Anonymous said...

Another Insider says-May I make some correction to the "the plea by Councillor Glyn Jones"-I was there and heard it all-the quote was as follows-"...let us put Anglesey in the media with good news..THROW OUT THOSE INEFFECTIVE TERMS OF ENGAGEMENT-let ALL 40 Members Collaberate..etc..etc".
Councillor Glyn Jones then ended his plea by saying-
"Mr Leader (Coun McGregor)-the ball is entirely in your court.."

Anonymous said...

McGreggor In Court ???

Anonymous said...

Councillor Glyn Jones spoke for all members, The Leader of the Council Cllr Clive McGregor now has an opportunity to show what he is really made of, by throwing out his Term of Engagement, and do exactly as Cllr Glyn Jones pleas.

The ball really is in Cllr McGregor's court now. If he really wishes to see recovery he now has the opportunity to do it.

Anonymous said...

To Glyn Pritchard-Jones.

When are you going to condemn Bowles and his agenda against the Welsh? Or are you just sitting on the fence waiting for an opportunity to be heard, your silence and ignorance is deafening.

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

In Thursdays Council Meeting Coun John Chorlton of Holyhead admitted that the Executive had made a mistake on the Pay & Display saga-Is this the first mistake that they have made ?are there more to come ? or is this the only one theyve been caught out on up to now ??

County Councillor Barrie Durkin said...


Now there's a sore point if ever there was one.

I have a letter from The County Council finance's department admitting that payments amounting to some £20,000 of tax payers money was paid out as Care allowance since 2002, in breach of the Constitution and therefore unlawful.

I think it would be a considerable step forward, if the onus was not put so much on the recipient but on the inept, hapless Officers, who allowed it to be paid month on month, year on year, knowing it to be wrong.

This I know has caused the recipient considerable embarrassment which need not have happened. This issue has been made much worse by the fact that on taking my concerns over this to the proper authority within the County Council all that happened was I got publicly abused and reported to the Ombudsman, for no other reason than to create a cover up. But I will have my day.

Anonymous said...

What fun it is to read comments on this blog. All sorts of weird and colourfull characters. From the one who is obsessed about the Human Rights because he's heard someone mention it in the pub to the one who thinks Carl Sargeant is actually capable of doing something. Priceless.

Anonymous said...

Well there it is again, another tanking from the main man.

I was wondering after all the abuse he had received and the lengthy complaint by David Bowles to the Ombudsman, whether Cllr Durkin had decided enough is enough and gone away. Oh me of little faith, I should have known better. Bowles is out of his depth with our Barrie. I think there'll be a lot more to be exposed now Cllr Durkin has made his stand and he will have his day

Cheshire said...

Well there it is again, another tanking from the main man.
That's why Barrie Durkin's nick name is "Exocet". He can strike from any angle when least expected and causes, if deserved, irreparable damage to his enemy.

Anonymous said...

Is that a Cheshire Cat (or Tiger)grinning ??

Anonymous said...

The care allowance will be put down to a simple error. No one did anything blatantly wrong, it was a mistake. End of.

Glyn Pritchard-Jones said...

The Offensive comments directed towards: Glyn Pritchard-Jones

"When are you going to condemn Bowles and his agenda against the Welsh? Or are you just sitting on the fence waiting for an opportunity to be heard, your silence and ignorance is deafening."

When are you going to grow a spine and make comments with your name tag or do you need permission from your mama?

Grow up!

Anonymous said...

Are we talking Welsh muslims, Welsh catholic or Welsh chapel types here?

And why are the Welsh so special. What about the rest of them.

Anonymous said...

Well well. I see Coastguard stations are to be reduced from 19 to 8 (is Holyhead's safe?), Search and Rescue sold off to a private company (bye-bye SAR at Valley?), council grants cut by 10% next year (on top of cuts alreadt announced) and the big bomb - government will no longer pick up the bill for outbreaks of disease on farms (including F&M) - farmers will be expected to carry sufficient insurance and pay for it themselves.

But we're all in this together.

Anonymous said...

Especially if the F&M started from the Government lab in the first place!!!

Anonymous said...

I know that that the main contributor is nothing more than a quasi-Welsh, far travelled mummy's boy who thinks that his travels gives him the right to tell us who stayed here through thick and thin how this place should be 12 years hence! Come on boy let's see what you are made of in the REAL world of politics rather than in faceless cyberspace. I riled you many a time even before you revealed yourself, as I instinctively knew who you were (not personally - but politically) and you are now open to the scrutiny and criticism that you levelled against others. Now you have to justify and explain your stance and the policies of your party and politics, so let's start with Student fees in England and Wales - explain that o far travelled wise one with all the answers (you will probably, as you have done before, censor this - but you cannot censor everything forever). I await and look forward to your response - and then I will ask you how YOU will make the savings in local government that you seem to always oppose but have no alternative answers to? Apparently the Council has to save £10 million over the next 3 years - so let's hear what your 'manifesto' is on that wise boy?

County Councillor Barrie Durkin said...

"The Care allowance was a simple mistake. No one did anything blatantly Wrong. it was a mistake. End of".

"In August 2009 Councillor Durkin approached the then Managing Director expressing concern about Care Allowance claims made by a County Councillor".
"He expressed the opinion that they amounted to maladministration by Officers or were fraudulent. He had had correspondence with the Wales Audit Office, who had advised him to take it up with the Council. The Corporate Director of Finance under took an investigation and concluded that payments were in order, and Councillor Durkin was advised of this". The advice said. "I am satisfied that the correct procedures have been adhered to in respect of the claims"

"In order to to claim eligibility for Dependants Allowance Members must apply to the Managing Director giving details of their Dependants in a form approved by him.Any Questions to eligibility for dependences aged 15 or over shall be decided by the Executive.

"My letter of the 16 August 2002 had invited members for supporting details if they wished to claim for dependants aged 15 or over. Councillor...... in response to that letter, showed me a letter he had received from the Assembly confirming that he was just the sort of person they had in mind for the allowance. I have not retained a copy of that letter, but it tended to confirm that there was no question as to his eligibility for the allowance". "Consequently the care allowance has been paid monthly from then onwards".

"Up until 2009 we had not insisted on monthly claims as outlined in the scheme, but paid each month ON THE UNDERSTANDING THAT THE MEMBERS' CIRCUMSTANCES HAD NOT CHANGED".

So there you have it. Inept hapless Offices paying out large sums of Public money with out due diligence. In breach of the Constitution and unlawfully.

Now you see what I and many of my fellow Councillors are up against. Lies, cover ups and waste of space Officers who are costing the Authority and the Tax Payer of Anglesey vast sums of money through their gross negligence and don't give a dam complacency, Constantly supported by David Bowles and his very shady Legal Department.
Need I say more.

Anonymous said...

12 December 2010 01:57

To the spineless one.

If you continue to be malicious in your words then I will have no option but to deal with you through the legal route okay?

I suggest you be very careful and think hard before you write anything that is seen as remotely damaging.

If you want to behave like a prat behind anonimity thats fine but start being abusive without showing yourself then its only heading one direction pal.


Anonymous said...

GPJ at 9.34

Don't worry too much about the ranting of an obvious drunkard (who else would have a rant at that time?)Such rantings aren't worth a fig.


Anonymous said...

To Cllr Durkin

Thanks for explaining the Care Allowance to us.

I (at 22.25) was just trying to put accross how the Council will spell it out. "We have`nt done anything wrong" (payments are in order) as usual.

They deny, until they are made to admit.

It will be interesting to see what happens next. I hope it is "something" and not "nothing" as usual.

County Councillor Barrie Durkin said...

Thanks for that.

Let me assure you and everyone else. As an elected member with a responsibility to expose dishonesty and wrongdoing within the Council, following all the treats and abusive crap my family and I have had to put up with from the likes of David Bowles's and Clive McGregor with their Communist style, "Terms of Hate" I have no intention of allowing them to continue covering anything up.

As far as I'm Concerned, and it goes for many of my colleagues, the sooner they both go, the sooner the real recovery can take place.

Anonymous said...

Well said Barrie, I'm glad your back posting here, it's good to read your opinion about the sad affairs that we call an Authority, please continue your good work and stance in getting at the truth, and representing the decent people.

Anonymous said...

County Councillor Barrie Durkin said...
I would be extremely interested in any evidence you or anyone else has showing (not through hear-say or innuendo) that members are ineffective and name them with the evidence.

‘Hello - Earth calling Durkin’

Are you really living on Anglesey .
Good god man wake up , 40 councillors all at war with not jot of gumption between them , a one cell amoeba would give them a good run for their money !

Results - disaster disaster disaster !!!

Anonymous said...

If the Druid had any sense why can't we write here suggestions that need investigating?

Anonymous said...

Bazzer, you do attract comments from a lot of gobshites here and you have my respect for taking on McGregors' folly and Bowles's worst nightmare.

Keep fighting, the fuzzywussy's don't like it up 'em.

Anonymous said...

Keep it up Barrie, you know that the right people are behind you, the others are too frightened to move without Mc's permission....

Another Insider said...

Dishonesty and Cover ups, You don't know the half of it.

Councillors received a copy of an email sent to the Chairperson of the Recovery Board yesterday, appealing to her to make an urgent recommendation to the Minister to take steps to suspend certain Senior Officers and Councillors, pending the outcome of an investigation by Police and the Information Commission in to allegations of a Criminal nature

The content of the allegations are so appalling that if these Officers and Councillors allegedly involved aren't suspended, then I think every decent, honest Councillor will need to protest on mass, or just pack up and go home.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
kp said...

It is no crime or wrongdoing to express a thought, a rumour or an untruth.

And, especially so in a forum such as this.

As such, be open with your thoughts and place them in a wider context so that we may all benefit.

Whaleoil beef hooked said...

Looks as if the early hours drunken ranter may have been at it again. Shame it's deleted. It's fun reading such delusional gibberish. I wonder if we have daytime* contribution from him?

*after midday natch

Brawd o Amlwch said...

The so-called pithy words spoken in Council by Councillor Glyn Jones.......wise words indeed, but its a fact they were not his words (no surprise there of course), they were written for him by another, he simply delivered the message !

the outsider said...

Druid, and Anon @ 00;04 12 Dec

I posted this yesterday it loaded as comment number 50 but then disappeared!

Re. Anon's post "that government will no longer pick up the bill for outbreaks of disease on farms"

I rang Defra' helpline yesterday they know nothing about this. The rates of compensation that will be paid this month for compulsory slaughter of animals with notifiable disease is on their website.

Where did Anon get this info from?

Prometheuswrites said...

Outsider @10.41:

It was reported on Radio 4 yesterday and today; however I can't find a mention on the Beeb web-site.

An Insider said...

Brawd o the Bullshit.
What are you talking about?
Are you such a toss-pot that you cant's give credit where its due?
Who the hell do you say wrote the words if it wasn't for Cllr Glyn Jones.

An Insider.
By the way, there lots of us.

Anonymous said...

An insider, that's made this Council the laughing stock of Wales..ha ha

Brawd o Amlwch said...

17.14 What I said was perfectly true, and all credit to the words....but they were written by a cleverer word-weaver than the little Councillor from Aberffraw. FACT.

Anonymous said...

Brawd o Amlwch
"But they were written by a cleverer word-weaver than the Little Councillor from Aberffraw.FACT"?

The little Councillor from Aberffraw, as you call him, was elected by the people to act on behalf of the people, commanding respect for himself and all, you should try some yourself you may be quite surprised at the response you'd get.

Anonymous said...

Good evening Druid,
As usual, this page began with serious debate regarding Parking & Fees. The page degenerated into myriad of other issues, this always seems to be the case with one particular glory seeker.

Returning to Car Park issues, I hav seen any comment from the 'meeting' attributed to the Council Chairman, why?

Billy Elliot

Anonymous said...

14th Dec 19.54
Sorry for mistake...
I meant to say "I had not seen any comment from the Chairman"


Anonymous said...

Council Chairman declared an interest and left the meeting!

Anonymous said...

What's new nothing, chaos all around us, all I want to know is when is the first defendant in court?

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 20:37--See the blog above on Courts-Thats why they cant close the County Court-thats the first step for tne culprits !!!-Where's the Hangman ???

Anonymous said...

Brawd o Amlwch ! I had a Brawd,Chwaer,Cefndar,Cyfneither,Wyr,Wyres,Nai a.y.y.b. in Amlwch-still there I think and multiplying....Is this Brawd my long lost Brawd ????

Anonymous said...

O fy Nuw..My long lost Brother..Same Mother but could be one of 500 Fathers who worked at Shell or Octel....If thats you Brawd o Amlwch..what does it make you..? a Ba*ta*d !!!!

Anonymous said...

Insider says-Brawd o Amlwch..if your Mother had done her duty and obtained guidance from the Economic Dept and provided the safe service required by all those lonely men from outside working in Shell etc Ynys Mon would not still be the poorest in U.K...your Mam ..had the service provided been up to scratch would be a Martyr for Ynys Mon ??==by the way Brawd--how many Brothers and Sisters do you have ??(oops..ones that you know of ??))

Anonymous said...

Dyn Gwyllt o Berffro says..Oh Brawd o have done it now....You have tarnished the name of my Councillor from Aberffraw..One of the most honest ones there in Ynys Mon Council...One who has won 3 Elections OPPOSED..!!How many have you won ???...Which one of the Amlwch duo is your Councillor ???are you comparing one of yours with mine ???..Blydi El..if you wonder Ynys Mon is in such a mess

Anonymous said...

Hey!!Mr Lonely here..where were you all last night ??thought it was the end of the World (or Anglesey)..oh..which Lodge was on last night...Amlwch..Holyhead..Cefni....ahhh..answers the question doesent it ??..Ah well..might as well close all the Bretheren will not be attending ...??..No Black Balls then...??

Anonymous said...

The county council have just given themselves planning permission to build 41 houses on that rock heap of Land behind Graigwen. Their intention is to sell it off to some unsuspecting mug who doesn't know that the land has serious surface water problems and that the water engineers brought in for advice say that the costs to make the land fit to build on, out weighs the land value 2 to 1. So much for the Council unlawfully paying £300,000 + for Graigwen just to gain access to a piece of rocky out crop.
Or does someone know something no-one else ought to

Anonymous said...

Brawd o Amlwch..are you really one of the "Brodyr o Amlwch"..which Lodge ?..We may have met ??..or do you have a Black Ball or two ??..are you Brawd o Amlwch because of your Mothers endeavours to promote "Economic Development" without any consideration to the Local Health Board or Betsi Cadwaladr ????..Please practise Safe Sex...For your Mother's sake....

Brawd o Amlwch said...

So mote it be dear brethren !

Anonymous said...

Nadolig llawen i'r dyn bach yn Ty Maer, Berffro.

The Red Flag said...

@the outsider said... 14 Dec 10:41

The removal of funding will take place during this Parliament and cease by 2015/2016 - I think that is the report the 'Anon' either heard or read. It's part of the same announcement regarding Coastguards etc etc

It was also mentioned on Radio 4 (as noted by Prometheus) as well as in the heavyweight papers, including the Daily Telegraph, The Independent and The Guardian.

I must admit, I was quite surprised being as by tradition, the Conservatives tend to look favourably upon farmers and not insist on 'market forces' like they did with the miners, the stelworkers and are now doing with the NHS and the unemployed.

the outsider said...

Red Flag I don't think this Conservative led Coalition is going to stand up for farmers, at least not the small family variety. This is just more really sad news, F&M was devestating in 2001. It would wipe out small businesses (and not just farm businesses) if there is another outbreak of that extent, and there's no compensation. It remains to be seen if small farms can afford the insurance cover. I think this is something that deserves to be re-visited by the politicians. Anyone interested in following it up eg.Druid? or anyone?

Paul Williams said...

Outside - if you'd like to contact me through the 'contact me' tab above, I'd be more than happy to talk to you about it.

The Red Flag said...

outsider - I wouldn't get to bothered until they actually show their cards. However history supports athe belief that the tories ultimately take financially pragmatic approaches to all industries sooner or later - for example they fully supported the mines, steelworkers, railways, gas, water, electricity etc being placed in and remaining in state hands during the 40's, 50's & 60's. During the 70's & 80's though they shifted position 180 degrees very rapidly.

Same with council housing. The biggest council house builds werecarried out under tory administrations and ultimately it was the tories that reversed them totally.

That said however, they confirmed this morning that the number of Coastguard stations will definately be reduced from 18 to 8 by no later than 2015 so the sheer logistics suggests that Holyhead's will get the hoof and be covered from Liverpool. The rest of the 'promises' will probably be firmed-up over the next few weeks or so.

Anonymous said...

It is eight Coast Guard stations - 3 full time and 5 part time.

Holyhead is definately off the list, and Liverpool is doubtful as well - it's an either/or between it and Belfast :-

not only but also said...

As said above by anon and so that there is no confusion the Daily Post confirms the Holyhead Coasguard Centre is to close with 23 jobs losses