Wednesday, 20 April 2016


This morning, about coffee time (our friend Helga was taking coffee with us), when I had occasion to leap up and take the above photo of a young greenfinch. These seem to have become fairly rare over the last year or so, but this one has been coming to the bird feeder over the last couple of days, and finally allowed me to photograph him.

This afternoon, we walked into town to do one or two jobs that had become necessary, and we were pleased to see that work had finally begun on our friend Hilary's house (the pink, bescaffolded house in the above photograph).  It is a very old house - Hilary has a trick, when showing people around her house of saying "This is the new part; it's around five hundred years old."  Then, on entering into what she calls the 'older part', saying "Now this bit is rather earlier. Well, another two hundred years or so older than the new part I've just been showing you".  For the last year or more Hilary has been battling with the local council for planning permission to put up scaffolding on the front of the house, where large areas of the plastered facade have been threatening to tumble into the street, and it looks as if planning permission for the scaffolding must have been finally granted; and only just in time, too. So now the necessary repairs can be started.

Walked home via the river walk. Not long ago there were three black poplars in this immediate area of river bank. Now only this one is left, and, as you can see, it has recently been very heavily pollarded. There are very few black poplars left in the east of  England; so I hope the town council know what they're doing. There are signs of it having been pollarded a good deal in the past, and also signs of a few green shoots already showing in the upper part of the tree, so it may be alright (???)  Hope so anyway.
Must walk round that way rather more often. Will keep you in touch.


P.s. Ann has just 'phoned Hilary, who says that it's THREE years, not one, that she has been trying to get planning permission  for scaffolding  to be erected on her home, so that the necessary repairs can be done.  Like many of the houses in town (including ours) Hilary's home is Grade 2 listed, so it's hard  to see why the council make it so difficult for us to keep our homes in good repair.


Crowbard said...

Hilary should sue the council for the extra cost of the work. If she got quotes three years ago that are better than current prices, I'm sure her solicitor would advise on the viability of legal action. Time to storm the Bastille or Winter Palace or Cosa-Council Castle where the indolent bossy-boots hide.

Mike and Ann said...

Thanks for the advice, Crowbard. I'd personally leave lawyers and councilors well alone. They always (perhaps especially the latter) seem to me to be abrasively self confident beggars. Generally you couldn't dent that self confidence, or make them admit to being mistaken, with a pickaxe. I wouldn't mind trying sometimes. One of them, on our town council, has recently moved to America. He hasn't resigned from the council, and continues to draw all his travel allowances!!!

Crowbard said...

Grasping, conniving hucksters the lot of 'em, some of them could fleece a politician ~ if they could find one that faced the same way for more than a second.

BBC said...
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