Developers (“Cranbrook Limited”) still seem to hold all the cards in the town

From Town Council website:

“For distribution – question: What is “Cranbrook Limited” referred to in the last line?

Town Council site:

“The Town Council has been advising previously that we have been chasing the Consortium to release householders from the rent charge deed and yesterday we received the following statement:

“The development partners, Persimmon Homes, Taylor Wimpey and Hallam are continuing to work with their agents to conclude the Estate Rent Charge audit process and Deed of Release on final payment of balances due from each household. Please bear with us as we complete these tasks. We will continue to liaise with the Town Council on this and update you further in due course.”

Whilst we are doing all we can to help progress this matter, the Town Council is not responsible for the development and distribution of the documentation which removes the rent charge deed from individual households – it is and remains the responsibility of Cranbrook Limited.

The Town Council will continue chasing this matter on a regular basis.”

The mysterious case of the missing speeding Health Secretary video!

“WHY DID ITV DELETE THE FILM OF THE SECRETARY OF STATE’S CAR SPEEDING THROUGH OTTERY HOSPITAL CAR PARK?

ITV’s short clip of Matt Hancock, Health Secretary’s ministerial blue-lighted car travelling at speed through Ottery Hospital’s car park, was deleted yesterday afternoon, less than 24 hours after it was posted.
Given that the video, which was in the process of going viral, must have dismayed both Mr Swire and Mr Hancock, my suspicions are directed firmly at these two.

I will be interested to hear from the two politicians whether they played a role in removing the embarrassing footage.

The tweet in question from political correspondent, Nick Smith, also confirmed that Mr Hancock’s black jaguar, using its security alert blue lights, appeared to be fleeing the apparently terrifying prospect of talking to me and around a dozen peaceable looking residents….

Here’s the video of the ministerial car speeding away after trying to shake us off…

For more detail see…

http://www.claire-wright.org/…/why_has_itv_deleted_the_film…

More Cranbrook Taylor Wimpey woes

“An NHS worker living in Cranbrook has spoke of her shock at finding her garden path replaced with a deep trench – and has fumed that the contractor hasn’t even had the decency to erect safety barriers.

Julia, 28, who is also studying physiotherapy at Plymouth University, said the mess left by workers ‘space for a coffin’ after they removed the slate pathway to the front door of her privately-owned home at Stone Barton yesterday.

She claims there had been no letter drop by homes builder Taylor Wimpey to warn locals about the incredibly intrusive and disruptive works.

All the pathways in her road are missing, and she is worried it could lead to a life-changing injury for some of her elderly neighbours.

She said: “I turned up home in the afternoon and they were just gone.

“Apparently they are now going to tarmac it as it’s easier to maintain.

“They have left huge trip hazard with uneven surface and gap 11 cm long in our only entrance to the house! No barriers, no warning signs.

“It is so inconsiderate. They didn’t send us a letter about it, they just did it.

“What if somebody on crutches or in a wheelchair has to leave their house?

“I work in a hospital with elderly patients with broken hips, many don’t make their way though it.

“It is so serious.”

Council contractors have returned today and are digging even more holes in the street.

The section of the pathway removed is maintained by Taylor Wimpey, and it is part of a series of scheduled works in the area.

She has tried ringing the relevant authorities to find out how long the works will last but has not yet been able to get through to anyone who can help.

A Taylor Wimpey spokesperson said: “We would like to apologise for any inconvenience caused to customers at our Cranbrook development while we carry out works to footpaths outside their homes.

“The health and safety of our customers is our priority and, following the concerns raised by residents, our construction manager has visited the working area and confirmed that it has been left safe ahead of the weekend.

“Our sub-contracted groundworker wrote to all affected customers to notify them of this work on 18th September 2018. The work is due to be completed on Monday 1st October.”

https://www.devonlive.com/news/devon-news/cranbrook-woman-28-fuming-after-2052534

“Birmingham pupils sent home early to save school money”

“A head teacher has cut the number of hours children spend at school to save money.

Neil Porter said he would save £18,500 by cutting an hour and 20 minutes every Friday at Birmingham’s St Peter and St Paul RC Junior and Infant School.

The pupils’ early finish means teachers can plan their lessons and there is no need to pay supply staff to supervise children.

But parents have said they have had to change their working hours.
The day finishes at 15:20 BST Monday to Thursday at the Erdington school.

But on a Friday after lunch, the 210 pupils now go into a whole-school assembly with the head at 13:00. They are then picked up by parents at 14:00. …”

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-birmingham-45665080

“The government set a target of 300,000 new homes a year but weakening demand means that construction is slowing”

“England is building 21 per cent fewer homes than during a peak in 2007 as the government struggles to reach its target of 300,000 homes a year.

Figures from the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government showed that housebuilders started work on 38,730 homes in England on a seasonally adjusted basis in the three months to the end of June. This is down from 48,920 in the first three months of 2007. However, it was 126 per cent higher than a low of 17,120 in the first quarter of 2009, in the depth of the financial crisis.

Conversions — for example, turning an office block into flats — also count toward the 300,000 target. When these are included, the figures show that there were 217,350 “additional dwellings” in England in 2016-17, a ten-year high. However, the number of housing starts for new homes is still declining, suggesting that a higher total figure may not be achieved this year. Compared with the previous quarter, the number of housing starts fell by 3.7 per cent from 40,200 in the three months to March and by 4.1 per cent from a year earlier.

Hansen Lu, of Capital Economics, said that demand was weakening. Analysts believe that buyers are starting to hold back because of uncertainty about what Brexit will do to the economy.

“With starts having fallen in four of the last five quarters, the big picture is that housing construction is on a gentle, downward trajectory,” he added. “We expect builders to slow construction further over the rest of 2018, rather than run the risk of building homes they cannot sell.”

The government figures were contested by property analysts and housebuilding groups, and have been discredited by the UK Statistics Authority, because they are compiled through local planning departments. These have been seen to be less reliable in recent years because the planners do not always receive information from all builders in their area.”

Source: Times, paywall

Devon head teachers in London protesting funding cuts

“Head teachers from schools in Devon and Cornwall will join about 1,000 colleagues from around the country in London today, to demand extra funding for schools.

They will meet in Parliament Square before delivering a letter to No 11 Downing Street, amid concerns over work conditions and overcrowded classrooms.

The heads quote the Institute of Fiscal Studies’ claim that per pupil funding has fallen 8% in real terms since 2010. …”

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/live/uk-england-devon-45563759

“Loyal customers being ‘ripped off’ across five sectors, study finds”

“Loyal customers of mobile phone and broadband operators, banks and insurers are being ripped off to the tune of £4bn a year – or as much as £877 per person – according to Citizens Advice, which has lodged a “super-complaint” with the competition watchdog.

The charity said customers who stayed with their utility providers were being unfairly overcharged and that measures must be taken to end “this systematic scam”.

Citizens Advice said its research across five sectors – mobile phones, broadband, home insurance, mortgages and savings – found British consumers were losing £4.1bn a year to the “loyalty penalty”: the difference between what existing and new customers pay for the same service. It added that eight in 10 people were paying a significantly higher price in at least one of these sectors for remaining with their supplier.

Using its legal powers, Citizens Advice has submitted its super-complaint – the fourth it has made since being given the right to do so in 2002 – to the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), which must respond within 90 days.

A consumer who was overcharged across all five markets faced a potential total penalty of £877, made up of £439 for a mortgage, £264 for a mobile phone contract, £113 for broadband, £48 for a cash Isa account and £13 for home insurance. …”

https://www.theguardian.com/money/2018/sep/28/loyal-utility-customers-ripped-off-year-charity-says