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Monday, November 20, 2017



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Updates from the last 24 hours on the blog, sent on 20 November 2017.
Updates below: 1

Time to contact your MP - Homes Fit For Habitation

Author: Giles Peaker

As I may have reminded you once or twice already (and no doubt will again), the second reading of Karen Buck MP's Homes (Fitness for Human Habitation and Liability for Housing Standards) Bill is on 19 January 2018.

This is a private members bill. It is very rare for private bills to become law, mostly because of the limited time available for debate in Parliament. It makes it very easy for any single MP opposed to a Bill to ‘talk it out’, by taking up all the available time. You may recall that just that happened to version 1 of this Bill in 2015.

In order to prevent this at the second reading of the Bill, we need 100 MPs to be present. This is the number needed to force a vote, so that the Bill can’t be ‘talked out’ and can proceed.

Private Members Bills are debated on Fridays, when many MPs are not at Parliament. This means that MPs will have to be particularly encouraged to attend the second reading on 19 January 2018.

I've prepared a short briefing on the Bill, setting out why it is necessary and important, and what it does. Please feel free to use this and to circulate it around organisations and individuals.

Above all, please contact your MP to tell them why you think the Bill is needed and to ask them to attend on 19 January. If you aren't sure, you can find your MP here.

Shelter are also running a petition in support of the Bill. You could sign that too...

I make no apology for going on about this. It is a relatively simple change to the law, but one that could have significant and lasting effects.

It is too important to be allowed to be filibustered out.  

Some one million rented homes in England, social and private, have category 1 HHSRS hazards, amounting to a serious risk to health. E&OE Julian Bray Editor Tel:+44 (0)1733 345581 .

Saturday, November 18, 2017

RMT ballots for industrial action on Virgin East Coast over attempt to impose 'two-tier workforce.'


RMT  the rail union, is to ballot members on Virgin East Coast after they say the train company decided to impose a pay offer that had previously been rejected by the workforce.

The offer says the union, sought to impose inferior conditions under further productivity and efficiency savings, despite an ongoing reorganisation that has already given the business many savings for this and future years.

Terms and conditions of hand-selected grades are being attacked, with others being better rewarded and left alone.

RMT General Secretary Mick Cash said: “We will not stand by while Virgin East Coast attempt to impose a two tier workforce with different terms and conditions for our members.

“The pay offer was put to our members and they rejected it by a large majority. Instead of negotiating the company has sought to impose the offer. Therefore RMT is preparing a ballot for industrial action for our Virgin Trains East Coast members.

“The union remains available for talks.” E&OE Julian Bray Editor Tel:+44 (0)1733 345581 .

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

POLICE APPEAL; WOODSTON MACHETTE AND GUN ATTACK Peterborough Burglary Review for the last 7 days: 14 burglaries.

Published on 14 Nov 2017

Detectives are urgently appealing for witnesses following an armed robbery in Peterborough.

The incident took place at the Stop and Shop in Woodston on Sunday (November 5) at about 12.10am.

Two men entered the shop armed with a machette and a black hand gun.

One man pointed the gun at a member of staff while the other held the machete to his chest.

The tills were emptied of cash and other items taken from behind the counter.

The men made off on foot along Oundle Road away from the city centre.

They then cut across a car park towards Orchard Street. The got away with approximately £150.

Detective Constable Fran Scott said: “Thankfully the member of staff was not harmed but that doesn’t take away from the severity of the incident.

“I’d like to appeal to anyone who was in the area at the time and may have seen these men to come forward.”

Anyone with information regarding this incident should call police on 101 quoting CF0638111117 or visit

Alternatively, contact Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555111 or via


On behalf of Cambridgeshire Constabulary

Peterborough Burglary Review for the last 7 days: 14 burglaries.
CF0643851117– Tuesday 7/11/17 – 14.00hrs – Main Street Ufford
This is an attempt as nothing actually stolen. We do not believe this to be linked to the rural series we have been seeing.
CF0643981117 – Tuesday 7/11/17 10.30-19.10hrs –  Waterloo Road Millfield
Entry via a jemmy (wrecking bar) to a sash window. Various rooms have been searched, Jewellery and small electrical items taken
CF0646521117 – Wednesday 8/11/17 22.20-22.25hrs –  Glenton Street, Eastgate
A burglary has been reported at this address, but access was not gained.
CF0647091117 – Wednesday 0.00hrs – Thursday 9/11/17 07.00hrs –  Granville Street
Entry has been gained via an insecure downstairs window, various unlocked rooms entered where a Laptop and 2 Bikes were stolen.
CF0649041117 – Thursday 9/11/17 – 14.30-21.00hrs –  Ainsdale Drive Werrington
Entry to this property was via smashing window & removing glass/beading. The house alarm triggered. Jewellery stolen.
CF0650091117 – Tuesday 7/11 – Friday 10/11 –  Ainsdale Drive Werrington
Entry was gained whist the occupant was out via a lower glass panel on the door being smashed. A search was carried out and Jewellery taken
CF0650711117 – Friday 10/11 12.45-13.15hrs – Cecil Road Millfield
Attempt burglary where offenders have used tool to prise glass/beading from rear door No entry gained and nothing stolen
CF0651171117 – Thursday 9/11 00.00hrs – Friday 10/11 21.00hrs – Linkside, Bretton
Entry was gained via a smashed rear patio doors where an untidy search was carried out. A TV, stereo and car were taken.
CF0652621117 – Saturday 11/11 – 16.30hrs –  Taveners Road Millfield
2 suspects, known to the victim have forced past victim into the house, have stolen cash and a mobile phone.
CF0653101117 – Saturday 11/11 – 15.30-19.45hrs –  Glebe Road, Fletton
House was unoccupied at the time of the Burglary. A rear door lower panel jemmy (wrecking bar) with tool.
Upstairs has been searched and jewellery and cash were taken.
CF0653231117 – Saturday 11/11 – 14.30hrs – Sunday 00.20hrs –  The Drive
Entry to this address was via rear Bifold doors that were smashed allowing hand to enter and unlock door from inside. An untidy search has taken place and jewellery and alcohol stolen.
Various electrical items and mobile left even though clearly visible.
CF00653561117 – Sunday 12/11 00.00-06.45hrs –  Barnes Way Werrington
Entry gained to address via unlocked French doors. Cash stolen.
CF0654231117 – Friday – Sunday – Bala Court Gunthorpe
Entry to this address was via smashing a rear window where an untidy search has taken place and Jewellery stolen from bedroom.
CF0654511117 – Sunday 12/11 – 10.00-17.30hrs – The Crescent, Orton Malborne
There are no signs of forced entry to this address. Purse stolen.

Anyone with information should call police on 101 quoting the relevant crime number or visit Alternatively, contact Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555111 or via
Message sent by
Amanda Large Police, Crime Prevention Officer, Peterborough

Anyone with information regarding the WOODSTON video incident should call police on 101 quoting CF0638111117 or visit E&OE Julian Bray Editor Tel:+44 (0)1733 345581 .

Monday, November 13, 2017

Cllr Darren Fower thinks Peterborough City Council is a mess and a nearly half a billion pounds in debt...

Cllr Darren Fower

Always an entertaining read and packed full of interesting observations is the Darren Fower blog, recently its undergone a colour change as Cllr Darren Fower recently jumped from the Lib Dems to the Labour Party ranks...

We've given him a few weeks to get his feet under the desk, and meet the comrades, so this is a selection of posts from his newly revamped blog, as ever the PbroTrib is sitting on the fence, so the views expressed here are that of Cllr Fowers alone... 

Conservatives have been “running” the City Council since the year 2000, and as someone who has been a councillor since 2004, I can assure you I’ve never seen them in such a mess!

It seems quite clear to me, given that there is no more silverware in the cupboard for them to sell, that they’ve agreed annual rises in Council Tax over the next 5 years, the back tracking on bulky waste collections, senior officers moving to jobs outside the authority etc!

And let’s not forget the recent events, like:

Tory Mayor drops resignation bombshell – After a year in the role as mayor, Tory councillor, David Sanders, announced at a meeting of Full Council (without informing his leader or other senior Tory councillors) that he’d be resigning his position as a elected member after 20 years in the role.

Some suggest this was solely down to his view of how things are being run by his party colleagues at the Town Hall?

Chief Finance Officer jumps shipJohn Harrison, who received £184,572 last year including pension contributions, suddenly left the authority, without even a good-bye email?

I was very surprised, as I thought he was pretty much entrenched at the Council and especially after I was told at a meeting (which he also attended) that he’d be the one leading the renegotiation of the Council’s contract with Amey?

Nearly half a billion in debt – This year I discovered from holding the Tories at the Town Hall to account during a formal meeting, that they are presently in debt to the tune of £395,400,000 and repayment of individual loans ranges from 2 months to 49 years.

The total interest payment over the life of the outstanding debt is presently £405,000,000……. nearly half a billion! To put it into perspective, if you get paid £16,000 a year, then its like you owing £38,400 …… on top of YOUR mortgage or rent etc Not very fiscally sound, eh?

Rhubarb Bridge fiasco – Hundreds of local residents were left dismayed after the Tories launched a “consultation” exercise regarding the future of the Rhubarb Bridge, however, on attending they discovered that there was only one option on the table, and that a multi million pound deal had already been signed!

To join his blog feed just follow this link: E&OE Julian Bray Editor Tel:+44 (0)1733 345581 .

Sunday, November 12, 2017


Drones are expected to feature heavily on Christmas wishlists this year, and many High Street shops have several types and pricepoints in stock. However, it's critical that while people have fun, safety must remain paramount.

NATS has been educating drone users about the need to be responsible while flying, especially around aviation.

Although many use drones for fun they come with a rulebook; rules which are embedded to ensure safety.

Drones have a unique element to them in that having opened the box, charged the battery and got your smartphone configured to control it, you can then take to the skies. No other gadget has this ability.

It's for this reason that the CAA's Dronecode was first developed. It sets out the rules to ensure safe, responsible use of drones to maintain the UK's excellent air safety record.

Over the last few months we've been conducting research into the first Code to see how well it has been adopted and we've created a new version to further ensure safety remains as important as fun.

The new Dronecode is supported with an easy to remember mnemonic:
  • Don't fly near airports or airfields
  • Remember to stay below 400ft (120m) and at least 150ft (50m) away from buildings and people
  • Observe your drone at all times 
  • Never fly near aircraft
  • Enjoy responsibly
To host the Dronecode and other drone safety information we've worked to set up a new website at

It's an exciting time to be involved in the growth of the drone market - we want to absolutely ensure people have fun with their own gadget; but we must ensure safety is key.

At times like Christmas, when many will be receiving them and enthusiastically unpacking them and taking them out, responsibility can sometimes be lost amid the excitement.

This Christmas, we all need to make sure people are aware of the Dronecode before taking to the skies. E&OE Julian Bray Editor Tel:+44 (0)1733 345581 .





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THE HIGH COURT has ruled....People have a right to lampoon and criticise politicians and public officials under the Human Rights Act, the High Court has ruled.

We have the full High Court judgment, saved as a page on here. l

ampoon (lampoon) Pronunciation: /lamˈpuːn/ verb [with object] publicly criticize (someone or something) by using ridicule, irony, or sarcasm: the actor was lampooned by the press noun a speech or text lampooning someone or something: the magazine fired at God, Royalty, and politicians, using cartoons and lampoons.

Derivatives: lampooner noun lampoonery noun lampoonist noun Origin: mid 17th century: from French lampon, said to be from lampons 'let us drink' (used as a refrain), from lamper 'gulp down', nasalized form of laper 'to lap (liquid).


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