10 June 2014
As you will see from the picture perhaps sunny day, funny interview:
OK, that was a bit of an out-take (Dale starring and Johnny doing the key grip, or whatever its called, role) and don’t worry, Dale looked at the camera when he had to. The BBC were kind enough to ask us about the Shoreline Management Plan (SMP) and we told them what rubbish it is.
The SMP sprang from nowhere, no one concerned was consulted, on one affected was told, it is obscure, it is convoluted, it is incomprehensible and it is completely wrong where it says there is nothing here of any economic value. Apart from that it is worth every one of the many, many pennies that taxpayers paid Halcrow, the consultants who wrote it.
Unfortunately it has become the shield of choice for bureaucrats. We say that it is flawed, we are patted on the head and told not to worry because it is ‘non statutory’. We push the county council for answers as to why they will not pay to repair the sea defences that they installed in the first place and they say ‘sorry that’s what the Shoreline Management Plan says we have to do, i.e. nothing’.
Someone (Karl Marx? Chairman Mao? – answers on a postcard please) said history repeats itself first as tragedy then as farce. 1917 was the tragedy for Hallsands when the original village was washed into the sea. One hundred years later is the farce, but the bureaucrats of Devon County Council don’t yet understand that they are the ones with their trousers around their ankles. Don’t worry, they soon will; the spotlight is relentlessly moving towards them.