Category Archives: Culture

The SNP have centralised the life out of Tayside

The Scottish Lib Dems have published a report showing the impact on SNP centralisation on Scotland.

You can read the full report here: The SNP have centralised the life out of Scotland.

The impact just for Tayside has been:

What has been lost:

  • Perth & Kinross Council, Dundee City Council and Angus Council stripped of financial responsibility.
  • Tayside Police abolished and their Dundee HQ scrapped.
  • Police public counters closed in Auchterarder, Blairgowrie, Brechin, Carnoustie, Crieff, Kinross, Longhaugh, Maryfield and Montrose.
  • Arbroath Sheriff Court closed.
  • Tayside Fire and Rescue Service abolished and their Dundee HQ scrapped.
  • Local Tayside Enterprise company board disbanded and now controlled centrally.
  • NHS capital funding decisions for up to 22 local hospitals now made in Edinburgh.
  • Angus College and Dundee College merged, losing local links.

What has been given:

  • Policing with centrally imposed stop and search targets up 236% in Perth & Kinross, 325% in Angus and 102% in Dundee even though the police admit there is “no robust evidence” it works.
  • Armed police routinely patrolling even the smallest towns and villages.
  • Local health services which miss important treatment time targets for children and young people suffering from mental ill-health.

Lib Dem Achievements in Government

Over the last few weeks, I have been disappointed to hear fellow Liberal Democrats repeat the accusations of our opposition, and in particular certain portions of the national media who have been desperately trying to portray Lib Dems in a negative light.  There is a continuing misconception that the Liberal Democrats sacrificed too much to the Conservatives during coalition negotiations. Here’s the real story of what we have achieved in Government.

This document is already 3 months old, so the list has grown since then, but it is a good starting point.

Lib Dem Achievements in Government

 

After the first TV debate during the General Election campaign, our opponents recognised that Nick Clegg was our strongest asset.  Since the morning of the second debate, there has been a sustained attack on him personally and on the reputation of the party as a whole.  Even Ed Milliband has resorted to personal attacks on Nick Clegg.  It is disgraceful, gutter politics.  Unfortunately, if you throw enough mud, it will eventually stick.

Nick Clegg is the antithesis of Teflon Tony Blair.  His record, as demonstrated above, is one to be proud of.  I for one, do not think I could cope with excrement posted through my door, my effigy being burnt, being called a traitor and receiving death threats and still come out fighting the way that Nick Clegg did at the Sheffield Lib Dem Conference.

I cannot agree with those in the party that take the attitude that they are in politics to fight Conservatism as a result of Thatcher’s legacy.  Saying that we would only go into a coalition with a discredited, illiberal, economically incompetent Labour Party would doom our party into subservience.

I came into politics and joined the Lib dems to make a difference on issue that I cared about, whether it was the environment, children’s welfare or civil liberties.  I believe in the values of the party, that local people know best about their area, that solutions should last and that everyone deserves a fair chance.

Those values, issues and policies are now being successfully implemented in Government, and it is a record that we should all be proud of.

 

Investment in Arbroath’s Signal Tower Museum Welcome

I visited Arbroath’s Signal Tower Museum on a cold, frosty morning. I was delighted to hear from Cllr David May, Convener of Infrastructure Services, that the museum secured £450,000 of investment in the recently passed Angus budget.

I thoroughly enjoyed my visit to the museum, the displays are fresh, informative and give a real feel for what life was like for ordinary folk living in Arbroath over the years. Staff there indicated that there were a huge number of items the museum would dearly like to share with the people of Arbroath. Therefore, it is wonderful news that the historic Signal Tower Museum has secured £450,000 for significant renovation from Angus Council.

David mentioned that the model of The Bell Rock Lighthouse, acquired by Angus Council, is included in the BBC’s History of the World in 100 Objects. It is no wonder then, that Angus Council want to support Arbroath and put the town at centre stage for the Bell Rock Lighthouse Bicentenary celebrations.

This significant investment in the Signal Tower is long overdue and I congratulate Angus Council in their vision in investing in Arbroath to help the community celebrate its rich engineering history. It will benefit the whole of Angus, not only in the Year of the Light, but well into the future.

David had said “ This allocation of funding on Arbroath’s Signal Tower is not just for the 2011 international celebrations of ‘the Year of the Light’, but in my view is very much part of our Council’s commitment to heritage tourism. This is a fundamental part of our wish to boost Arbroath. As tourism is one of Angus’s key economic drivers, this considerable investment in the Signal Tower is hugely welcome. I am just disappointed that the SNP did not support us in celebrating Arbroath’s heritage.”

Sanjay visiting Arbroath's Signal Tower Musuem