Birds of a feather will flock together was the title chosen by a recent eagle-eyed correspondent commenting in the context of GESP.
The reference to eagle-eyed birds is continued by another correspondent, Michael Temple, who introduces us to a new online publication West Country Bylines:
West Country Bylines (WCB hereafter) is, like Owl, an eagle-eyed bird ever on the watch for lies and skullduggery both across the region and nationally. Like Owl, too, it is its own bird, free of political influence from the Big Birds of Prey. It has a particular predilection for factual truth and loves to get its claws into all forms of crookedness, humbug and mismanagement. Fed by flocks of small local birds from all over the West Country, it is a natural companion for Owl and like-minded birds elsewhere in the country.
First issue can be found here Issue Number 1 – 23 July 2020 – West Country Bylines
Mike is the author of the article Thrown to the wolves. Covid-19 in care homes: a tragedy and a scandal
This also caught Owl’s eye in the first edition by Dumbledrone:
“….Neil Parish of Tiverton and Honiton continues to make his heaviest contributions in the areas of agriculture and food, and took up the role of chair of the environment, food and rural affairs committee. He spoke in both the trade and agriculture bill debates against a US trade deal threatening our food and welfare standards, citing the importance of a level playing field for our farmers and food producers, and has called for constituents’ voices to be heard in trade debates.
As a farmer, he knows this subject well and understands the threat that his party’s brave new world brings to his industry. All credit to Parish for using his expertise to push back on elements in this bill and show willingness to work cross-party to ensure better legislation. But are his personal interests or those of his constituents the major lever behind these small acts of rebellion? He sadly wasn’t concerned about protecting the interests of the NHS in the 20 July vote. Parish, along with Simon Jupp (East Devon), seemed more exercised by the need to retain BBC regional politics’ coverage. That said, Parish is one to watch next term!
…East Devon’s Simon Jupp has shown his party loyalty by speaking in favour of Robert Jenrick’s intervention in the Westferry planning decision and roundly supporting the decision to fold the department for International Trade and Development into the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. He has advocated strongly for the tourism industry in his constituency and, as a former journalist, has campaigned against cuts to BBC local politics’ coverage. Despite this flicker of resistance, he doesn’t seem ripe turf for rebellion.”
Will we soon have our own West Country “Parliament “? [of Owls]