These weekly updates are taking a while to create… thinking I’ll post as stuff happens in real time, or a few hours after… then joining them up on a Sunday will take like 30 mins… allowing me to relax more while fine dining by the pool 😉
Monday 15th July
Met up with Jason Mills, Countryside Manager and got a better understanding of his work and work load! This is the chap we need to turn to if we are thinking, let’s plant this and that in our woodland or on our curb-sides, he knows what would naturally thrive in a given location and what should be there to maintain “England’s green and pleasant lands”.
My fear with the vision to open up our herbaceous borders is that both well meaning individuals and too many idiots will simply throw around random seeds that will then proliferate and be very difficult for a small team of professionals to manage.
I bumped into representatives of Wild Maidenhead and their Windsor associates from different, equally interesting horticulture groups, pulling out the Japanese Knotweed from the riverbank at Sutherland Grange this afternoon. Jason works closely with these groups, keen to help but also keen to do it right… please make sure you ask people who know their hyacinthoides non-scripta from their begonia or you might do more harm than good to the local ecology.
I mentioned we should have the results of our ecological survey very soon and will be putting on an event for those interested.
Tuesday 16th July
Read through the Windsor Town Forum minutes and there was very little to prepare as it is more of a talking shop, although its constitution reads differently… perhaps a few tweaks needed there…
RBWM Full Council July meeting coming up next week…
Read the minutes of the last full council meeting, just look at all the questions / comments from the independents about a host of topics … the Conservatives really didn’t enjoy that, especially Cllr Dudley who that evening started another meaningless conversation on Twitter about attire. Obviously a distraction technique from all the negative news that had been publicised that week… anyway, there is a much bigger boulder coming down the road next week…
Cllr Dudley, in a recent tweet, is looking forward to the paper on the re-development plans for the Nicholson Centre and Broad Street Car Park. Big question for me is the level of funding… Vicus Way Multi-Storey Car Park for 500 car places is currently going through procurement, tender closes 31st July and has a budget of £10m… Broad Street replacement car park for 1,000 cars has a budget of £35,000,000 ??? I’ll be asking for an explanation on Tuesday…
“The RBWM must tighten up the way it runs its finances” was a warning from the Local Government Association this week!
You can’t just float on the wind and hope you don’t smash into the cliff face… I did ask about finances at the last full council meeting, Cllr Hilton joked, “why a councillor concerned that we might overspend on his ward! What a strange concept, ho, ho, ho!” Well I still don’t have the promised report, I guess I’ll have to bring that up again as well on Tuesday 😉
Wednesday 17th July
Bit of head space, I was able to progress the Windsor Town Council signature campaign to snappy snaps. Daljit is doing incredibly well with his signature gathering and by all accounts Richard’s on a pub crawl, gathering hundreds as he goes 😉
The idea of a town level tier to governance to ensure that Windsor gets its fair share of the public purse… at Fi.Fest, talking to the audience as I gathered signatures for both Windsor Town Council and Maidenhead Town Council, it was very apparent that residents from each town feels the other gets a fairer share of the pie! I have asked officers for numbers on this a few weeks back, I best follow up and see what’s what…
Thursday 18th July
I had a meeting with one of the Youth Service Officers to find out more about their role but also to explore how Manor Youth Centre, Dedworth is currently used and what services they could benefit from offering to the local community. The kitchen there is very 1980’s if not before! Perhaps a new catering kitchen where young people of all abilities could be taught life skills would be in order?
Thursday evening and we had the Windsor Town Forum which is suppose to be about all the non-parished areas of Windsor and cover topics from around the whole of Windsor. A very limited programme… I did ask for it to be expanded on for next time, not sure what I need to do next to ensure that happens? Perhaps writing a blog is the best way to do that?
One more reason why I may well move to single blogs on single topics to max the impact as polite emails have much more chance of being completely ignored.
My pal Dave from Rotary had mentioned about the parking machines being a pain, I suggested he turn up and ask his questions to the main man and he did. Excellent presentation but then he’s good at that sort of thing… you’ll be able to listen to the meeting here in a couple of days >>>
Cllr Neil Knowles was on form, not happy that the constitution was being ignored… it quite clearly states that to be on the Windsor Town Forum you need to be a ward councillor… there are only 3 conservatives in Windsor, 8 Independents / Lib Dems, so they had brought in Cllr Cannon from Datchet as a 4th but that ain’t Windsor.
Cllr Bowden did try to not dig a hole but he probably did, make an appeal for that rule, we’ll just ignore this one… not sure that worked but hey, we’ll see what happens at the next Windsor Town Forum meeting aka WTF 😉
I’ve got him an appropriate outfit for the full council meeting 😉
Friday 19th July
Drove down to Devon for a meeting with my boss and enjoyed some jolly nice fish & chips at Rockfish Exmouth, an up and coming fish restaurant chain that are expanding along the south coast.
Collected Charlie’s stuff as he moves back to Windsor for the summer before heading off to Bristol to do an ology 😉 Being a small world, Phil’s lad is setting up the new Rockfish outlets, goes in, shows them how to rock fish and then heads back to chef at Exeter before being sent off to set up the next restaurant in the chain.
Popped into to see a few pals and enjoyed a nice evening out at The Swan, Sidmouth which if The Swan, Windsor can emulate, it will be doing a grand job… well on its way by all accounts 😉 (Video from the last evening at The Swan I went to…)
Saturday 20th July
Spent a few hours watching the sea roll in while reflecting on the full council meeting agenda for Tuesday! Enjoyed whitebait for lunch, do enjoy a little fishy on a little dishy 😉
Followed by a nice stroll along the beach before heading back to Windsor where I sat on the sofa and fell asleep within minutes.
I did like those baskets hanging off the railings, super idea, if full of local wild flowers 😉