A little bird tells me that Father Hope, the ex-Archbish of York and now Parish Priest of the nearly-heretical St. Margaret's, Ilkley, has been off work for the past four-six weeks. With stress. Yup, running a church in one of the richest parishes in the country, dealing with all those social problems, etc., tc.
The Gazette printed the letter about the Trust, alongside a couple of others. Strange to be on the same side as arch-Tory Barbara Cussons (actually, as I'm not sure she knows what sie she's on, this may not be true). In common with usual practice, the subs failed completely to proof the page, with the result that the last paragraph got completely mangled. ONe just can't get the staff. Quite how someone manages to mangle the text in a letter sent by e-mail where all one has to do is cut and paste is beyond me.
1) Given that the new Natural England body only becomes effective from 1 October 2006, why the precipitate rush to form a trust? Natural England has yet to make clear its level of support for either trusts or council-owned natural land. 2) Councillor Hawkesworth needs to spell out precisely what extra funding would become available if a Trust was formed. Would this funding only become available if the Trust had significant private sector involvement? 3) Under the suggested terms of any trust: How would the trustees be selected? Would Trustees be elected by Ilkley rate-payers? Would the rate-payers of Ilkley have any say in the Trust's composition? Would the Trust be intended to have control over access and use of the moor--ie. could it potentially allow the re-introduction of shooting? Would the Trust have control over the properties on the Moor--Silver Well, White Wells, etc? 4) Given that the recent proposals for hiving off the public buildings of Ilkley to a private body collapsed under accusations of corruption, should public concern over similar privatization of the moor not be taken more seriously, rather than being treated with disdain by COuncillor Hawkesworth? Let us not forget that Ilkley Moor was bought for the people of Ilkley by the Local Board in June 1893. Since that time we have collectively owned it. This land is our land, and it should not lightly be handed over to a group of unelected individuals over whom we have no control. (and from where does the 'this land is our land quote come? Probably the first use of a diggers slogan with regard to Ilkers)
Last week was the 100th anniversary of the completion and opening of the New Bridge. Not a mention was made of it by local dignitaries, local paper, local shops. So, to make up... Happy Birthday to you Happy Birthday to you Happy Birthday dear New Brook Street Bridge Happy Birthday to you
More on the trust idea from the minutes of Bradford council (it's a cached google version of a pdf). Given that the management document suggests that 5K is all that is spent on the moor by Bradford (which sort of makes the management document unattainable), the notion of the trust is to allow an independent body to apply for more funding. Of course, with the very generous precept IPC organizes for itself, there is a pot of money ready and waiting to improve the environment. Those opposed seem to be suggesting that all the moor needs is more brass, which is true. But its unlikely to be increased by Bradford. Better by far to return it to local control. Before going forwards, though, would the trust consist of the usual busybodies? Would there be elections (after all, according the the Middelton settlement, we all own the moor)? Would the people of Ilkley have a say in what happens, or would it be like everything else, and decided in the tory club and the golf club (Ilkley, not Ben Rhydding), or in the gated community on OWler Park Road? But if one of the ideas is considered, selling off Silver Well Cottage, I know at least two people who might be very interested.
(you know you should give up blogging when you re-use post titles for the third time). Fraser tells me there's a meeting of the Parish COuncil to dicsuss the plan for the future management of the Moor, June 5th, 7-30. Be there or, as I shall be, be somewhere else. The management plan is available here -- I don't yet have an opinion, except I don't want a trust with no pasaran in charge.
Apparently young chap Fraser is on the steam wireless tomorrow (24th May) talking about the Moor. You and Yours, 12pm. Or do I mean am. Anyway, its midday. And I daresay you can hear it on the 'listen again' facility at the beeb's website.
By way of the rather lovely clickrich who I keep meaning to link to (and now have) an image of a memorial to a bomber that crashed on t'Moor during the war. I know nothing about this. Must have completely missed the story due to being over on the wrong side of the Pennines. Maverickapollo has the full story linked here. Can someone give me directions please?
The local paper has re-done its website. Which is a bit of a shock. No more massively out of date articles, no more letters from over a year ago (actually no letters at all as they haven't uploaded those yet). Now it's all spankingly up to date and interweb-friendly. Course, the fact the Ilkley Gazette has increasingly little to do with Ilkley and uses more and more stories from sister papers in Yorkshire sort of undermines the project, but at least now we know why they've been cutting back on the paper version.
Well, after everywhere shutting down together, loads of places are now opening up. Rumours of Pizza Express in the station, and a restaurant advertising for a chef de partie in the paper today, a new venture, specialising in East Asian cuisine.' Surely not another curry house? Nobu opening up north?