As we left for work this morning the road was packed with police and the woods opposite the house were sealed off with 'scene of crime' tape. I went over to ask the police what was happenning to be met with a stonewall response that 'we are investigating an incident'. Brilliant! I would never have guessed that without police assistance. What sort of incident? A bomb making factory in the bushes? An explosive device found? An arms cache revealed by the provisional IRA as part of their deal with the Government? Who knows? As it turned out, someone amongst the local constabulary felt able to reveal to the local newspaper that they were investigating a mysterious death after a body had been found in the woods. Only a few weeks ago there was an alleged sexual assault in the woods, and following that the police undertook to keep Councillors informed so that we could try to stop incorrect rumours spreading, and as elected representatives we would have some idea of what was happenning in the neighbourhood. Fine policy that turned out to be!
Last night the Planning Committee once again through out (unanimously) the odious plans by Blue Chip Casinos to turn a local pub in a residential area into an all-night gambling den (see 26 July posting). Congratulations to all the residents who turned up to the Planning Committee with their banners and placards... who says people aren't interested in politics! Hopefully, now, the owners of the pub, who I understand to be Enterprise Inns, will put in some investment and turn The Barleycorn into a decent pub with good beer and food that will be a benefit the local community. If they're not going to do that, let's flatten it and build some homes in what is one of Sandwell's better areas (and that, believe me, is not a big claim).