Thursday, 18 March 2010


I have to admit to a sense of tedium when I read on Mark Nottingham's blog tonight about the 'demo' outside South Thanet hopeful, Laura Sandys' office, or ex-office, in Ramsgate today. Click here for the link

I find it odd that the Labour Party still has an obsession with fox-hunting ( having banned it) as a cruel activity.  In this country we are quite happy to use chemicals to eradicate rats that cause them a slow lingering death. Rats are a pest, you might say; well, many country people, trying to protect spring lambs and their chickens would argue the same about foxes.They are a top predator with few natural controls other than over-population and mange. The death of a fox by a snap of a fox-hound's strong jaws is a cleaner way to die than spending half the night trying to chew your foot off to extract yourself from a snare and then be dispatched by a 12 bore. ( a sight that I encountered in a hop-garden in Cranbrook some years ago.)
I am happy to see the ban on fox-hunting looked at again by Parliament and perhaps Laura Sandys would be best advised to make a statement that she is either  pro-hunting or  an 'anti'. Roger Gale MP, who might have regretted a recent character reference, is at least open on this issue; he is an 'anti'.

My thanks to a 'Strife' contributor for the rather artistic pic below, of  a big dredger vacuuming in the main harbour in Ramsgate earlier this week.. I have reports that similar work is ongoing in Bolougne. One assumes it is all about LD Lines and an extra ferry or two, due in Ramsgate shortly. (I will try and refrain from mentioning  Euroferrries)

As Bertie is not a 'jolly tar' sort of chap, the news that the other part of Ramsgate Harbour and its Marina has a major beach in it and a bad silting and 'gunge' problem seems quite astounding. It seems that the big maritime 'Dyson' in the pic just cannot get into the other part of the harbour due to too much silt and what is needed is a smaller dredger. Is it really possible that the other harbour and Marina will continue to silt up because an accumulation of sand has been allowed to occur that cannot be tackled? Are we really beyond a point of no return down there? Perhaps the time is long overdue for TDC to get a Port Management contractor in? They can't even arrange to sweep the street outside the Biggles' hovel more than once in 12 months so keeping a harbour clean is obviously too much for them.


Anonymous said...

Unfortunately dredging costs money and you can't have all the dredging done and have all the nice new office furniture, carpets, double glazing, increased car allowances, free parking and junkets to china. You have to pick and choose. So the ferry terminal gets dredged,the Margate offices get some goodies and the harbour silts up.

Anonymous said...

Laura Sandys cant give a statement as she is isn't independant minded enough to make a decision without referring to "Roger". If she does make a statement she usually gets the story wrong anyway. Think you might call it intellect or lack of it? She's certainly not sharp enough to find workers who aren't tarnished members of TDC tories and their cronies?Same crew who lost Dane Valley for the tories i think you will find that is why they have made sure Watt-Ruffell hasnt resigned his seat?!only his place in the party, couldnt risk another by-election loss could they?

Anonymous said...

Conversely you could ask why David Cameron, with all the problems his government might have to deal with, should be so concerned to get the ban overturned.

The other key factor you have highlighted is why Laura Sandys won't come clean on whether or not she supports the ban or wishes to see it overturned. Like on so many real issues that concern the electorate she seems reluctant to state her views rather than re-hashing some Central Office directive not even amended to take account of S. Thanet's particular problems.

All these initiatives she gets publicity for never seem to be heard of again once the photo-op has been dealt with.

That is what I'm concerned about.

Anonymous said...

This won't be anything to do with the phantom ferry company as they still remain without a vessel .....

As for the photos that come up on the Thanet Blogs, why would anyone want to go there ?

Readit said...

In any well run marina, dredging would be carried out as an "expense" on mooring fee income before any "profits" are taken for other purposes

That would ensure harbour dredging is always put first.

Anonymous said...

Readit unfortunately you are talking about tdc where the people running the marina have very little input into the budget, the budget is all sorted out in what used to be smoke filled rooms and people working from home in maidstone and sevenoaks etc.tdc can afford to do the dredging they just choose to spend the money on theatres in Margate empty business parks and llp's such as EKO.
When everyone has left the marina and gone to doverthey will be very suprised and say "oh i wonder whay they left, we better set up a working group to look at the options"

Anonymous said...

That dredgers big and does not come cheap looking at l d lines record lately swapping from port to port ship to ship who will be left with the bill? if it does not make a profit quickly will they be of the same as they have in other ports? or swap for older freight ships and not consider passenger comfort as is going to be the case on the dover bolougne service but i really do hope it makes it the town really needs some sort of service

Anonymous said...

Bertie this is where I beg to differ hugely with your views.

Foxes are not killed instantly by the snap of a fox hound's jaw, they are torn apart piece by piece and they feel every bite. Most of the bites will be to the abdomen and limbs. Before this happens they are run to exhaustion, suffering great stress.

That huntsmen actually encourage their children to witness these acts of barbarity and then smear their faces with blood, all in the name of 'sport'. A case for social services I think.

Traditional fox hunting is not sport, it is barbarity.

Alan Poole said...

I don't have too much of a problem with farmers shooting a fox or two but I do have a big problem with a bunch of idiots on horses chasing a fox for miles and then allowing their hounds to tear it to bits while they watch. Some sport!
Laura Sandys should come clean as to which side of the fence she is on......are you for or against fox hunting? That should be simple enough even for Laura to answer.......

Anonymous said...

Are Conservative Cllrs in season!!!

Anonymous said...

Leaving aside the foxhunting issue, Laura Sandys certainly doesn't count modesty as one of her trait the number of times she name-dropped Tory grandees during her Q & A sessions last evening at Holy Trinity Church.

Apparently she was even on Saddam's hit list. How many people can say that?

Anonymous said...

Laura Sandys needs to get her election organiser on the carpet pdq as it turns out her leaflets are going into Dane Valley regularly. Hasn't anyone told her Dane Valley is still North Thanet?

It seems, also, she shares Roger Gale's office so you'd think he or Suzy would have a map on the wall of the boundary between the two constituencies.

Ashcroft's money being wasted there but then he does have plenty to splash around.

Ken Gregory said...

Alan, I am no great fan of fox hunting, BUT, it appears you have never seen a 'kill' close up. In Fact the fox is killed in pretty short time, (like a couple of seconds) then it does tend to get rough treatment. But of course, life is extinct by then. Compare that with a fox that is shot by someone with a Shot Gun. Usually it is not a direct kill, but requires a second shot. The only way of killing a fox reliably, in one shot normally, is with a rifle and a good eye.

I am afraid these animals have assumed 'Pest' proportions and do need control.

Finally, your comment regarding 'Idiots' could be equally applied to the council chamber, some are idiots and some are not, much like the society they represent. I know which catagory most of them are in,, do you?

Anonymous said...

Idiots Ken...we will leave that for the elections next year, when the comment of a*********e and the Turner centre can be properly debated along with planning matters.

Wind and elevation are also factors in taking a shot - get either or both wrong and something else will get it in the ear?

As for foxes I find them cute and cuddly unlike politicians and they do not savage Yorkies in parks either.


Anonymous said...

It would seem that your blog however much it is denegrated is reaping some benefit - if the rumours about which councillors have been into the station for questioning, i believe you ran an article about the story on your blog! Here's to justice Bertie, might be a bit short of Tory councillors restanding at the next election though, think those questioned might only be the tip of the iceberg? Perhaps there might be room for Conservatives with integrity once more if there is a clean sweep done unwillingly or not? Your campaigning won't have been in vain!
Have to agree with the writer who said about name dropping - how i hate those who have just lived and breathed politics and not lived in the real world, the South Thanet liberal candidate is calling for independant non-politically raised candidates and i think he has a point there!

Anonymous said...

19 March 2010 12:18 anonymous

I am afraid you are very wrong sometime the fox gets ripped to pieces by the whole pack and takes 1-10 minutes in abosolute agony before the poor animal is put out of it's misery. You lot call this fun, this animal has done nothing but try and survive and you agree with this cruelty, yet when you hear or see a human child being killed slowly by inhuman parents you agree just to lock them up for a short time.
Some of you human beings are evil through and through,I would rather live with animals than you lot, get a life and leave the wild life alone.

Anonymous said...

Thought it was hilarious when so many people went to the Tory Office in Ramsgate to protest against Fox Hunting when the office had moved some time ago, who was made to look small then? certainly not Laura Sandys, especially as Laura doesn't support Fox Hunting, perhaps it would be better for you to enquire before you fire off next time .

Anonymous said...

If TDC had regularly dredged the harbour as it used to be, it would not have become in the state it is today, all the cut backs TDC have made, have ruined so many of our facilities.
TDC has a lot to answer to, the sooner this lot are out the better.

Anonymous said...

I am totally against the killing of such beautiful animals, many hours of pleasure have been given to me by sitting in my garden middle evening when a whole family of foxes would come into the garden for the food I nightly gave, the babies would play with balls and flower pots, even my 2 cats would sit still on our garden table seemlingly to watch the event, BUT THEN ! humans put poison around the area and the pleasure was taken, foxs were seen walking around the road at night but no more.
What right have humans to destroy such lovely animals!

Bertie Biggles said...

12.13, I have not written a posting concerning any Cllrs in respect of your comment. There have been rumours flying around Thanet all week in regard to the matter you appear to be referring to and some comments have appeared on Strife alluding to this.
I repeat what I have said before; until we hear otherwise, that is all they are; just rumours and gossip.
Unless parties concerned reveal they have made a formal complaint or Kent Police reveal they are investigating issues brought to their attention, speculation is just speculation. It would be unwise at this stage to comment in any more detail.

mnottingham said...

To belatedly add that like others I have no problem with foxes being shot, but I do with them being torn apart and Ken is worng in his statement, I know of cats being eaten as part of "chase". That doesn't happen with shooting/lamping.

You've got this the wrong way round Bertie 75% of the people oppose fox hunting, it is only an issue because despite all the many challenges we face in life the Conservatives have said they will make repealing foxhunting a priority.

Anonymous said...

19.13 If Laura Sandys has moved her office from King Street why then does her newspaper advertisement list 7-9 King Street as her address? There's nothing to say where the office has moved to so presumably the demonstrators used the advertised address as their focal point.Rumour has it the local party is a bit short of the readies so she's sharing an office somewhere else. Why not tell us where that is?

Laura Sandys doesn't support foxhunting, apparently, so why did her PA say she'd vote to bring it back. If you're so sure of her views why doesn't SHE come out publicly and say so? What has she got to lose as S. Thanet is hardly a hot-bed of pro-foxhunting voters?

Anonymous said...

I remember some while ago spotting the conservative office sign next to the rear entrance of Rooks (up the steps from King Street towards Abbot's Hill).

Anonymous said...

Mark is correct, hounds have and do also kill family pets. See the following current bbc news item about a pack of hounds killing a family dog being walked by children.

Anonymous said...

Dug out leaflet distributed by Laura to confirm address given is 7-9 King st and i received that last week - postie delivered!

Anonymous said...

Postie delivered a Laura Sandys leaflet? How much is that costing S. Thanet Tories?

Good thing the election hasn't been called yet as the expenses must be mounting as this is the second mail-shot sent out, I understand.

If the address is incorrect isn't that misrepresentation or something similar? There's nothing on the front door to say it's Tory Central HQ or where the office now is.The office at the given address is quite clearly empty but if they've moved round the corner then you think they'd want to tell folk where they can be found.

Did hear a whisper S. Thanet Conservative Association has a shortage of the readies so perhaps a smaller office has been located.

Mind you the amount of promotional stuff being sent out by the candidate someone must be footing the bill- presumably Conservative Central Office channelling Ashcroft money.