Does EVERYONE ignore our Police and Crime Commissioner

The official Facebook page has many posts from Ms Hernandez but only a small handful of comments, most of them negative. The Twitter account seems similarly sparse.

Not a good start for someone who said she was going to use social media to engage with the public.

Wonder what Mrs May thinks of these non-jobs?

OFCOM wants rural broadband volunteers to inform them of ” challenges” to service

Telecoms watchdog seeks rural volunteers

TELECOMS watchdog Ofcom wants rural people to tell it about the broadband challenges they face.

Ofcom said it wanted to find out more about the “rural broadband experience” by encouraging rural people to join its research panel.

Ofcom said it existed to make communications markets work for everyone. One of the ways it did so was by conducting research to find out about the customer experience across the UK.

Each year, Ofcom reports its findings in its flagship Connected Nations report – which provides a snapshot of the state of the UK communication network.

To inform this and wider work, Ofcom is calling for volunteers to sign up to join its expanded research panel of broadband customers.

Ofcom said it was “particularly looking to sign up more people who live in rural areas in order find out more about the challenges they face”.
Potential participants are encouraged to sign up via Ofcom’s partner’s website at

Volunteers who meet Ofcom’s sample requirements will be sent a unit to plug into a mains socket and connect to their home broadband router.

Further details of the sign-up process are set out below.

1. Broadband users sign up to take part in the research by completing an online form on SamKnows, Ofcom’s technical partner’s website here:

2. SamKnows compares these volunteers to Ofcom’s sample plan, which is designed to ensure that the panel is statistically robust and nationally representative. Please note that not all of those who volunteer to take part in the research will be selected.

3. Those who fit Ofcom’s sample plan will be asked to complete an online end-user licence agreement.

4. Volunteers are then sent a whitebox hardware measurement unit that they plug into a mains socket and connect to their home broadband router using the provided cable.

Please note that the whitebox will not interfere with the panellist’s connection as it only runs tests when the connection is not in use, and it does not monitor what the panellist uses their connection for.
Further detailed information about the process can be found at

If you have any questions or would like further information about this work, contact Jose Kurian at

Problems in East Devon can also be referred to EDDC’s broadband czar, Councillor Phil Twiss …

Hinkley C doesn’t make sense

And yet our Local Enterprise Partnership and its devolution deal puts it at the heart of their plans – not surprising given the nuclear interests of several LEP members:

” … Hinkley C had been described as “the most expensive object on Earth” many months before the National Audit Office (NAO) revealed that subsidies would be nearly five times as big as had been previously advertised. The avalanche of subsidies has produced an ongoing state aid dispute with the UK launched by Austria, a new state aid investigation by the European commission into the reactor builder Areva, and a potential state aid dispute over France’s plans to make up EDF’s credit shortfall on the project.

Hinkley C has now become so uneconomic that it has been condemned in editorials in the normally pro-nuclear Times, Telegraph and Mail, and many EDF executives and employees think it might be a bad enough plan to completely destroy the state-owned utility.

On Thursday EDF’s board will make a widely trailed decision on whether to proceed with this “investment”. After years of delay, this unseemly hurry looks a bit like panic.

The tide has been turning against Hinkley ever since the problems at Olkiluoto in Finland and Flammanville in France, Hinkley’s elder siblings, became horribly apparent. Now, with a new UK government not so publicly committed to the project, EDF may be feeling that its chances of getting Hinkley built are likely to diminish even more quickly. Osborne seemed willing to countenance almost anything in his desperation to get his legacy built, but Philip Hammond might look at thte figures and the alternatives, and start looking for a way out.

To be clear, the Hinkley subsidies are not bungs to power brokers or inexplicable government largesse; Hinkley’s problems are so severe and so numerous that it requires potentially illegally high levels of state support in order for it to be built. Listing them all – the legal risks, the engineering risks, the liability risks, the credit risks, the safety risks – would take so long there would probably be some new ones before I’d finished. But they all spring from a reactor design, which has so far proved impossible to make work, and has even been described as “unconstructable” by an engineering professor.”

“Councils demand reassurance on universal broadband pledge”

Councils have urged the government to “reaffirm its commitment” to a minimum broadband speed to stop thousands of homes and businesses falling into a “digital twilight zone”.

The Local Government Association called for a “timetable for action”, saying it was “paramount” to press on with extending broadband to all of the UK.
Ministerial changes after the Brexit vote must not delay work, it added.

The government insisted it was on track with its broadband coverage plans.
The promise to give every household a legal right to high-speed broadband was announced in the Queen’s Speech in May, as part of measures to make the UK a “world leader in the digital economy”.

The government expects an initial minimum speed of at least 10 Mbps (megabits per second) by 2020 under the new “broadband universal service obligation” (USO).

The pledge is included in the Digital Economy Bill, which will also include powers to direct Ofcom to regularly review the speed provided to ensure it is “still sufficient for modern life”.

Council leaders said they supported the creation of a national minimum broadband speed, but called for a “safety net” for those who were unlikely to be covered by the plan.

The government plans to set a reasonable cost threshold above which the remotest properties could be expected to contribute to the cost of their connection.

Mark Hawthorne, from the Local Government Association (LGA), said good digital connectivity was “a vital element of everyday life”, and key to the economy.

A minimum speed was “a good start”, but it must keep pace with national average speeds, especially at peak times, he stressed.

“Without this there is the real possibility of some areas – particularly in rural and hard-to-reach areas – falling into a digital twilight zone.”
The LGA’s call comes a day after Ofcom announced proposals to make BT’s Openreach division a distinct and legally separate company from BT to ensure “faster, more reliable broadband.”

But Ofcom stopped short of calling for Openreach – which runs the UK’s broadband infrastructure – to be spilt off entirely.

Responding to the LGA’s intervention, Digital Minister Matt Hancock said nine out of 10 UK homes and businesses could already get superfast broadband, and Britain was on target to reach 95% coverage by the end of next year.

Fast and reliable broadband was “a must these days”, he added, saying the bill to make the minimum speed requirement law was currently going through Parliament.”