Author Archives: Steve Tierney

Sarah Bligh

Sarah Bligh

So today’s news is that my colleague, Cllr Sarah Bligh, has crossed the floor to join the Liberal Democrats.  To be honest, I think Sarah probably is more of a Liberal Democrat than a Conservative so I cannot say I am surprised.

Obviously, its disappointing, as I’ve known Sarah since she first became interested in local politics.  But people have to do what they think is best and I have no doubt Sarah will continue to be a strong Councillor on the opposition benches.

She joins Gavin Booth and Stephen Court, both of whom are very nice fellows, even if I don’t always agree with them politically.  I’d like to wish her all the best.

Wisbech Castle Project – 9th June

Wisbech Castle Project – 9th June

Another full day of volunteering at the Castle as a bunch of fine folks worked hard on various different jobs.

Starting at 7.45AM the work continued until 6PM and included painting lots of the white woodwork inside, jet-washing the basement courtard and steps, cleaning and jetwashing the wooden shed, moving lots of accumulated rubbish to the skip, general cleaning and maintenance.

Out in the gardens the lawn was fed, bushes and branches trimmed, paths cleared.

A dozen people beavered away at different times as the project continues to move on.

We had a visit from a team of archaeologists from Peterborough who were keen to look at the vault. They stayed for a tour of the house and expressed admiration for the place and the work being done.

Throughout the day tourists came to the gate and peered in (and we showed them around). It was great to see that all the tourists were gushing about how nice Wisbech is to visit and how excited they were to be able to have a peek at the Castle Project.

I’d like to express my thanks to the amazing volunteers who continue to work so hard so often. I would, however, like Dave Topgood to stop painting everything I am about to touch.

Introducing Councillor Ben Prest

Introducing Councillor Ben Prest

After a month or more of hard campaigning, the Conservative candidate Ben Prest was elected tonight to represent the Kirkgate Ward on Wisbech Town Council.  At Nineteen years of age, I believe that makes him quite possibly the youngest Town Councillor ever elected in Wisbech?

Ben is a bright, eloquent and charming young man and I think he will be a fantastic Councillor.

The victory belongs to Ben, but he was helped by the local Conservative team who worked hard to make sure this young man had every chance.

Ben won with enough votes to beat both the other candidates put together, which, for a young man in his first ever election, is quite a feat.  Somebody said it was “youth versus experience”, which I don’t think was quite right (some sorts of experience are not particularly welcome).  I think that being a fresh face, an earnest and genuine young man, and being a true local candidate were probably the deciding factors.  People seem to prefer candidates who live where they live, or at least very close.  But whatever it was, Ben won very clearly.  Congratulations to him.

Vote For Ben – 7th May

Vote For Ben – 7th May

Wisbech Castle Working Party 6th June

Wisbech Castle Working Party 6th June

Changes and improvements are coming thick and fast now.

The contractors upstairs have all but finished. All that remains is to get some new carpet in and do a little work on the kitchen and the top floor is all ready.

Volunteers have been hard at work elsewhere. The wooden floors in several areas have been cleaned and waxed and look amazing. The Fendick Room has been cleaned, organised and looks brilliant.

A lucky find in the Ground Floor bathroom has meant that we should be able to get that ready at much lower cost than we ever thought. The area has been cleaned and prepared.

In the Basement floor, a volunteer has repaired and painted the walls in the storage room and is well on the way to completing the boiler room / kitchen as well.

We now have our new external tap fitted for the garden, and have been donated a work sink which will be installed shortly.

In the gardens a huge amount of work continues to be done. Volunteers have been pressure washing the old benches ready for rubbing down and varnishing. They look so much better already!

The contractor in the Pump House has completed the work required. It has all been repainted inside and out, the rotten wood replaced and the structure brought back to a point where it looks great inside and is usable for at least a few seasons.

The Castle has also announced its first open-to-the-public event, which will be during Rose Fair on the Saturday – a Victorian Tea Party in the gardens.

WisBEACH Day 2018

WisBEACH Day 2018

Incredible day.  Incredible weather.  Huge crowds.  Awesome atmosphere.

Couldn’t have asked for more, really.

Well done all my colleagues at Wisbech Town Council and all the brilliant volunteers.  Another one knocked out of the park!

Phab Disco

Phab Disco

I enjoyed spending Tuesday night with the local PHAB club, where I was providing the disco that found the centre of the festivities.

It was a lovely evening and it was great fun to see everybody enjoying themselves to much.

A particular shout out to Tammy – in all my years of charity DJing I have never had somebody hand me a letter during the disco detailing not only their song requests, but solid reasons why those are their song requests!  I was charmed and, as you might imagine, the requests were certainly played!


Work Continues At The Castle

Work Continues At The Castle

Work continues apace yesterday and today.

The Gardening team have planted all sorts and the gardens are now generally looking lovely.

Some volunteers have been working on getting the fountain back in order. Looks like it will need a new pump installed, but otherwise still seems to function well.

The Pump House is being painted and repaired. This is broadly just a job to make it functional again, as it will need a larger and more extensive refurb in two or three seasons time, but It’s coming on great and looking much better. The crumbling rotten wood panels are being replaced and made safe.

In the house the tradesmen working on the top floor are close to finishing the refurb. All it should then need is some new carpet and it will be ready to use.

Other volunteers have been beginning to catalogue and sort the many things in the Medworth Room.

On the Ground Floor, a brilliant volunteer has been hard at work painting one of the small rooms which is destined to become the freezer room for wedding catering.

A volunteer who is a professional plumber is securing and installing a new industrial sink for our workshop area and an external tap for help the gardening team connect their houses. A volunteer who is a professional electrician has already installed external electric points for attaching tools and is working on emergency lighting in key areas and lighting for the front of the house.

We expect to have some portions of Wisbech Castle open for Rose Fair. There’s still a long way to go, but we should be proud of the fantastic amount of work our many volunteers have already achieved.

(The reason I don’t name any volunteers is because so many people are now helping and I don’t want to accidentally forget anybody. We will, however, be cheering and thanking our volunteers in an official way later in the year – more news on that later.)

– Steve Tierney

Stinging Nettle Alley Volunteer Fly Tip Clearance

Stinging Nettle Alley Volunteer Fly Tip Clearance
Yesterday on Wisbech Discussion Forum (Facebook)  somebody reported a fly tip on the alleyway between Lynn Road and Clarence Road on this forum yesterday.
I reported it to FDC who said that they couldn’t clear it because it was on private land.  (Not precisely sure it actually was/is on private land, but I digress.)
So a few of us thought: “what the hell, let’s just go and clear it ourselves.” How long could it take?
Well, that was a lot of rubbish. We’d filled forty bin liners and had barely touched it. As we got down the pile there was a lot of rotten food that was squirming with maggots and worms. There were old nappies, old filthy flea-infested clothes that smells of urine. And it got worse.
One of the volunteers vomited several times during the cleanup. We sort of felt like we needed one of those special teams they bring in to clean up crimes. Extreme cleaning.
Anyway. We got through the majority of it, filling nearly fifty bags of stuff. We then piled all the bulky waste which FDC agreed the Rapid Response team would come and take away – this is the stuff we couldn’t fit in my car; sofa, mattress, a couple fo TV husks. Everything except the kitchen sink. Except there was also a kitchen sink.
Thanks to the volunteers; David Gutteridge. Ben Prest. Jamie Edwards David Topgood all of whom saw the report on Facebook yesterday and agreed to help.
It was a couple of hours of truly disgusting work. Disgusting in the real sense. My car was used to transport the waste to the dump, who agreed to take it helpfully. My car stinks and will be in need of a deep clean all its own later today.

Classic opposition tactic

Classic opposition tactic:

If you do a thing:
Attack you for doing it. Say you should not have done it, or don’t have the experience to do it, or can’t afford to do it, or are doing it for the wrong reasons.

If you don’t do a thing:
Attack you for not doing it. Say you should have done it, or you were scared to do it, or you are too worried about money and not about value, or decided not to do it for the wrong reasons.

Silly, really.