Yesterday I had a good old rant about the parking situation outside our house. This morning we were having a late breakfast when the doorbell rang. Someone from the Liberal Democrats was there asking if we had any concerns about things in the area. So I bent her ear a little on the parking question. Lots of sympathy but not a great deal of practical help being offered.
The same applied to the public transport question. I explained the difficulties of getting back from Manchester, or indeed Oldham, to Delph at the end of an evening when the last bus leaves at 10.30. So, she told me, what she and her husband usually do is prebook a taxi to be waiting for them when they get off the tram at Oldham Mumps. Oh, my! I never would have thought if that! Of course, what a revolutionary idea: add upwards of £12 to the cost of your evening out!
Then, almost as if something was getting to me on a transport theme, I came across some statistics. Last June, Department for Transport figures estimated that over the next 25 years journeys by train, bus, bicycle and on foot would all fall. Car journeys, on the other hand, would rise by 10%. Three-quarters of all journey-miles are now in private cars. About 90% of goods and business traffic goes by road. Half of the country’s poorest households – about 800,000 families – have cars and spend a quarter of their income on them. This is probably because the bus service to where they live is so rotten.
Here is a link to the article about it.
And here is a link to one of my favourite journalists, Paul Mason, on a similar topic.
And despite my moaning I still feel that we can manage perfectly well without a car - most of the time.
Later in the day I was walking back from Uppermill when I came across a chap taking pictures of the old burnt-out mill building just near our crossroads. It turned out that he takes photos to update information sites about listed buildings. And it just happened that the old mill building, which burnt down during the summer, had been declared a listed building only a couple of months prior to the fire. Would you believe it? Has there been a bit of a scam going on to get around planning officers? Just a little coincidental!
It was a lovely day to be out and about taking photos. Here are a few of mine.