December 9th, 2010


 Our nice Council chappie Peter who has been invaluable as a middle-man between the builder and ourselves has been given his notice by the council.  As have all his colleagues.  They are employed until 31st March and then it's thanks a lot and good-bye.

The council have, I'm told, also given all the school crossing patrols (lollypop ladies and men) their notice too.  They've decided that it's not their responsibility to get children to school safely - it's the parents' job.  In a richer area this wouldn't be a huge problem as a lot of children are driven to school, but here most of them still walk.  Any single parents have been told by the government that benefits will cease when a child reaches school age - 5 - rather than secondary school age - 11 - as it always has been.  We have a lot of single parents round here.  We also have a lot of poorly paid people where both parents have to work - quite a few mums of young children are lollipop ladies - or dinner ladies - which could also be getting the chop - what happens to them?  How can we expect parents to put their children at risk by not having lollipop people.  I was a latch-key kid.  I walked to school under my elder brother's - and older neighbour's children's supervision.  We had to cross a busy main road - but at least there was someone there to cross us over, and that was in the 50s when a main road was a lot quieter than nowadays.

Richer children - like the MPs and councillors children - will be fine.  They'll be dropped off at the school gate by car.  But what about parents that don't have a car?  Or are at work for 7am in the local cake factory or supermarket?  This government are barking mad.
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