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Banking Debacle and Council Tax

A picture for Banking Debacle

Having banked at a ‘Good Address in the City’ for well over half a century it bemuses me to be phoned, by some perfectly charming young lady at a local Branch thereof, offering me her services as my Account Manager. I do not doubt that she is the most capable among Managers. Unfortunately as Banks have lost a lot of their credibility over recent years, one has lost faith in the ability of a Bank to manage anything at all. It would be a foolish person who put all his pennies in any one Bank’s Basket, or accepted their advice, or even the advice of many a Financial Advisor be such a person Independent or otherwise. It was after all their Professions that landed Global Finance in the Mess that it seems to be in today. A while back I, so doubtlessly everyone else was being bombarded with offers of Cash advances in the form of blank cheques that merely needed to be filled in; and was proffered unlimited supplies of Credit Cards. Seemingly many advantaged themselves of such largesse, and now find themselves on the edge of insolvency, because what such money paid for is now worth far less than the debt incurred. Easy mortgages were largely responsible for the inflation of the price of Houses. However the ‘subsidised’ sale of Council Housing, and the Enfranchisement of Privately owned Freeholds, and the Planning Laws all had a part to play. How foolish the Banks and Building Societies were to give such easy credit. How Stupid Government was to de- regulate the City, and to meddle in the Housing Market.

Were those who borrowed too much money more or less foolish than those of us who followed Mr. Micawber’s precept, or even the advice of Polonius ‘neither a borrower nor a lender be etc’. It was all very well putting ones Savings on Deposit or on the Stock Market, but what now the value of the shares purchased or even the interest received? When Investment income falls many have to encroach on the residual value of diminished capital to fund basic living expenses. Possibly all might have been wiser ‘to eat drink and be merry.’ and save nothing. At least the allegedly imprudent may have had a good time at our expense.

I recall being at a Bonfire way back in the 1950’s outside a London Depository when ‘Tea Chest after Tea Chest’ packed with Reich Marks were being incinerated at their owner’s request, because the money was worthless. Do Bankers and Politicians never learn? It was not only Germany, but too Greece, Italy, France, and now the like of Zimbabwe. Hopefully it will not be us next.

It is all very well for Government to legislate about this that or the other. Bring in new laws and regulations, subscribe to the Human Rights Act, and employ more and more personnel to ‘Police’ such matters, but penny by penny it has to be paid for by the tax payer. Good Housekeeping needs to start at Home, and by Home I mean in TISBURY VILLAGE. It is a ridiculous extravagance that our one Village is managed by TWO PARISH COUNCILS. We the Council Tax Payers, pay for such nonsense. Severally we pay the Salary and Office expenses of two Parish Clerks, pay twice for the hire of Halls in which to hold Council Meetings, twice for the cost of elections were we ever to have any. Pay twice for supervision of Council Affairs. One might bore you even further to go into the detail, but hopefully the point is made. What manner of Councillors do we have that seem willing to go along with the State of things as they are? Is such the price that we have to pay for what I at least, regard as our improvidence at Election Tide?

If some may wish to have a Tisbury and a West Tisbury, might this not better be accomplished by having two Wards of but one joint Parish Council? These two persisting Civil Parishes are but vestiges of the former Church Parishes, which Ecclesiastical Parishes have long since amalgamated and formed one Parochial Church Council. There is nothing Historical about a Civil Parish Council, they came into being in my late Father’s Life Time.

Residents of West Tisbury are excused reading this

Currently an ‘E’ banded House located in say Mallard Close, which is in the centre of Tisbury but on the edge of West Tisbury Parish, pays £1676.51 in Council Tax. However an ‘E’ banded house in say Upper Chicksgrove which is in Tisbury Parish, but some two miles from Tisbury Village Square pays £1696.20. Council Tax. Some £19.69 more. Not a big deal one might suggest, but It multiplies up alarmingly. Why should the Tax Payers of Tisbury Parish be subsidising the Residents of West Tisbury who benefit from Tisbury Village quite as much as any of us do. On one of the occasions I queried the matter, I was told ‘West Tisbury don’t want to join Us’. You bet they don’t !

Are the wishes of West Tisbury the proper concern of Tisbury Parish Council? Surely Tisbury Parish Council is there to look after the Affairs of Tisbury Parish. It West Tisbury Parish Council as a body wishes to express its point of view concerning new houses off Hindon Lane, or the future use of the Station Works, then surely it would be not unreasonable for them to amalgamate with us. A while back a representative of West Tisbury sought to address Western Area, on an ex officio basis, but quite rightly was advised that West Tisbury was not a party to the matter and that any statement made should be made as but from a concerned member of the Public, who happened to be a West T. Parish Councillor.

If the TWO PARISHES AMALGAMATED , then savings would be made, and possibly the financial differential might all but disappear. Then WEST TISBURY would have a Legitimate Voice in Tisbury Affairs, and possibly between us we might drum up enough Candidates to enable an Election to be held.

I know Parish Councillors are men or women of good intent, and do much of the ‘Donkey Work’ when it comes to running any Village, but do those who are not members of some local Trade Association or stand with ulterior motivation always remember that there is more to their office than giving a sagacious nod of the head about matters that really are no proper concern of any of them. Have Parish Councils become irrelevant? Is that where the problem lies? In May 2007 two of Tisbury’s adjoined Parishes had absolutely no names submitted for Office prior to the closing day for nominations.

The Tisbury and West Tisbury Parochial Church Councils amalgamated a while back. Might not the Civic Parishes have better done so too?

Thought of the Moment :
I like what I'm doing better than the way you're not doing it. -Dr. Albert Schweitzer, in response to a critic.

22 January 2009 14:38

contact : John B. Pope
Email : pionono@tiscali.co.uk