LENGTHSMAN From what the Enquirer can see there is a movement afoot to reduce the effectiveness of the lengthsman scheme. For the last three years we have built up a lengthsman scheme that is the envy of Herefordshire. Councillor Geoff Fielding has almost single handedly prepared bids for funding, built budgets, completed all the paperwork, worked with the lengthsman closely on scheduling needed works, ensuring they are up to standard and passing information to the Clerk for action. We are sure that there are very few in the Cradley & Storridge communities who have failed to see the results that our lengthsman scheme has achieved. Herefordshire have on two occasions asked if our scheme can be used as an example to other parishes as to what to aim for. About two and a half years ago Geoff Fielding and the then Vice Chair Ken Nason attended a briefing on behalf of Herefordshire by Balfour Beatty. At that meeting it was stated by a senior member of Hereforshires Accounts in response to objections to the amount of works being included into what the lengthsman was expected to do for little money from Hereford. He stated “ If you don’t carry out these works yourselves in Parish then, they WON’T get done” As was estimated at the time it was proposed that Cradley prepared itself for the inevitable removal of the financial support for the lengthsman scheme from Herefordshire. It was proposed to the PC that they start putting funds aside so that Cradley was ready with money in the bank to fund the lengthsman scheme when Hereford withdrew funding. That is happening in April 2018. The PC has accrued funds to run the lenghsman scheme for two years from April. They already have their own suppliers signed up and being used for materials, and contracts and insurances all ready to go. Schedules of proposed works and budgets have already been prepared for Hereford’s approval. So why is the lengthsman still not signed up to go next month? Because someone who knows nothing about the lengthsman scheme feels that the scheme that has run so well for 3 years, has to be taken apart and broken up for some stupid box ticking exercise. The previous council passed on the lengthsman scheme fully working ,with funding in place - so why is it thought that changes are needed? !! ASK YOUR COUNCIL!!
Local Heros Contrary to what a lot of people think there are those in the community who don’t have agendas and are prepared to take up the challenges when they arise without a second thought. John and Joy Perkins who farm in Cradley have spent time and energy in helping during the latest snow fall. Working to clear the Cradley to Mathon Road on several occasions when it was blocked due to snow drifts. They selflessly dug out cars and got stranded people well on the way to their destination. CONGRATULATIONS AND THANKS TO THEM FROM THE ENQUIRER AND THE COMMUNITIES OF CRADLEY AND MATHON Now that’s COMMUNITY A SIGN OF THE TIMES or, a load of bureaucrats? Like the American Surgeon who spent so much time on procedure, ticking boxes and researching legal liability, haunted by a perpetual fear of being sued, that he never in fact managed to find time to do the job he was employed to do, i.e carry out operations on his patients. It seems that the PC is going down this same road. What have they actually achieved for the good of the community in 2018? Bureaucrat: an official in a government department, in particular one perceived as being concerned with procedural correctness at the expense of people's needs