WHISPERING SMITH: The Devil and the deep blue sea...

My patch and hat in better times...
My patch and hat in better times...

It is always the same old story from Tory police commissioners, that ‘we, the common people’, do not appreciate or understand the glorious ‘benefits’ of austerity and the resulting beneficial reduction in police funding.

‘We’ are informed that ‘we’ do not live in the 20th century any more.

True, ‘we’, apparently, are in a sort of limbo stuck between the Devil and the deep blue sea.

What is the point of reporting vandalism when you know perfectly well that nought will be done about it or the response to an actual crime is too late in coming.

Why ring Katy Bourne, the police commissioner’s gifted ‘special’ number instead of 999?

Beat feet on the street, front line policing is the real answer – that in close combination with modern technology.

‘We, the common people’ know that so why don’t our elected representatives?


I HAVE often banged on about the amount of work, dedication and commitment needed if you take on the responsibility of an allotment – well, time to take my own advice.

This year I have had a sore back – bending down easy, getting back up, not so much!

I say it’s an old war wound but really it is a long-standing problem, no pun intended, exacerbated by a fall early in the year.

So, my allotment has suffered and, embarrassingly, is nowhere near up to the standard it should be and has been in the past so, I am turning in my fork and spade.

Sad, really, it was such a privilege to have had an allotment and the town council are to be congratulated for their continuous support of the project.

I met many friendly folk, got lots of good advice, lost a couple of inches off my waistline and, apart from three bee stings from a nearby hive and bitter comments from those few who enjoy killing foxes, it has been a real pleasure and often a source of inspiration for this column.

I will miss it very much.


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