Posted tagged ‘Daily Mail’

Beeny’s council nightmare

November 28, 2011

More free publicity for Mrs Beeny

Spending a bit of time at home with Mrs WLLG is usually a local government free zone. I figured this was set to consider as we tuned into the last in the series of Sarah Beeny’s restoration nightmare.

For those who like me haven’t watched Mrs Beeny on television since his flatmate had an unusual crush on her during the first series of property ladder, this latest series sees Mrs Beeny, her husband and children trying to renovate a huge country house.

So far so tediously Channel 4.

As those who have watched the drama unfold over the past few months will be able to attest unfortunately this programme is anything but a local government free zone.

In fact for some reason it has almost turned into a pitched battle between the local authority and the Beenys. You see, the Beeny clan had, over the course of ten years rebuilt the house and were planning to live in it (shock horror). This was against the ‘rules’ as the property was currently zoned as a school.

Even worse they then wanted to open it up as a wedding venue (woah, we’ve only just approved you to live in it) thus making it a business and not a home. More permissions needed. What’s more, (and here I’ve relied on the Daily Mail’s more detailed description of the story) the crazy developers had broken more planning laws:

The Welsh slate used for the roof had been replaced with European slate and she had erected some gate posts without any permission.

And we wonder why local government gets a bad name!


The real pensions divide; not private and public but haves and have nots

July 6, 2011

I just love that scary pig!

Sometimes, the work of another blogger provides the motivation for a blog post. Today the work of two of my colleagues, and a comment on one of those posts, has inspired me to write a post which might be way off base but I hope provides some food for thought.

Last week one of my colleagues, reflecting on the pensions strike argued that in reality the public and private sectors aren’t so different. This followed up a piece from the week before discussing the future of the local government pension scheme. In that post my fellow WLLGer had written that there was general agreement that local government should maintain a final salary scheme.

A commenter (code name Jeremiah) pointed out that actually many would prefer a career average type of scheme as it did more to even out the benefits between those on ‘normal’ salaries and the ‘high-flyers’.

When you add the two posts and the comment together it got me thinking:

Is the real divide in terms of pensions not between the public and private sector but between those who are reasonably ‘well-off’ and those that aren’t; or to put it another way the ‘haves’ and the ‘have nots’.