Author Topic: Swindon's new monument to itself...  (Read 12624 times)

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Offline Muggins

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Re: Swindon's new monument to itself...
« Reply #40 on: February 04, 2014, 10:10:11 AM »
I've sat and watched it twice, sat on a bench having a McDonalds. Well not watching it exactly, as you say Tobes, it was on and my eye's strayed to it out of curiosity.   

I thought it ironic that they are switching off for one of the very things I thought it was put there for. (bad grammar I know).

I wonder how much outcry there will be that it won't be on? 

And I wonder at the outcry if the local pubs did the same?
Oi! Listen mush. Old eyes, remember? I’ve been around the block a few times. More than a few. They’ve knocked down the blocks I’ve been around and rebuilt them as bigger blocks. Super blocks. And I’ve been round them as well.  The Doctor (Night Terrors)

Offline Richard Symonds

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Re: Swindon's new monument to itself...
« Reply #41 on: February 04, 2014, 10:47:53 AM »
The Council is seeking savings tomorrow night at Cabinet when the budget is to be discussed.

Either turn this television off completely and save the cost of having it, believed to be £35,000 per annum or get someone else to pay for it!

Simple really isn't it, but apparently not for the Conservative Administration, it would appear?
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Offline Geoff Reid

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Re: Swindon's new monument to itself...
« Reply #42 on: February 04, 2014, 03:29:40 PM »
InSwindon Ltd (or however the BID company defines itself) seem to be responsible for the day to day running costs of the screen which, of course, means that BID partners get to control what is, and what is not shown on the screen.

It is for exactly the same reason that (I believe) Swindon Town Centre will never have a traditional English market within the BID district.  The BID partners will allow any number of faux markets - farmers markets, french farmers markets and rotting wooden christmas sheds - but they won't entertain anything which they deem 'threatens' their trade.

I've said it before, the BID district/Town Centre is little more than a milking parlour and it is one reason that I spend very little time or money there.

I also think it's sad that the sale of alcohol in the town centre is given such economic weight and that the public behaviour of those who have been sold alcohol is of such concern to the vendors of the same.

Something is seriously out of whack in the BID District.


Offline Richard Symonds

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Re: Swindon's new monument to itself...
« Reply #43 on: February 04, 2014, 03:57:56 PM »
Interesting perspective Geoff and the failing Farmer's market is proof of that fact.

In St Albans from where I write the shops actually benefit from the hugely successful Wednesday and Saturday markets as the stalls are a mere six feet from the shops and people flit between the two.  There would be a riot by the likes of Marks and Spencer if the market were to be closed down as it is the reason why people queue to come into town and use both facilities which compliment one another and not compete with one another.

Perhaps the party of business who control Swindon Borough Council ought to get into their cars and come down here on a Saturday to see what happens in a truly vibrant retail environment.

But meanwhile the centre of Swindon continues its slow lingering death and when one of the big boys move out it will be too late to save it as everyone goes elsewhere in the Borough or to Bristol, Bath, Oxford or Reading to do their Serious Shopping.
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Offline the gorgon

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Re: Swindon's new monument to itself...
« Reply #44 on: February 04, 2014, 05:55:45 PM »
Only ever watched it whilst eating a recently purchased Greggs pasty  :popcorn:

Mind you it has to be said that I think BBC paid for this originally as there are other towns and cities out there that have them.

Offline Tobes

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Re: Swindon's new monument to itself...
« Reply #45 on: February 04, 2014, 07:00:09 PM »
Quote
Mind you it has to be said that I think BBC paid for this originally as there are other towns and cities out there that have them.

So, if paid for by the beeb, its paid for by ordinary people using a form of taxation...
I do not agree with what you have to say, but I'll defend to the death your right to say it - [attributed to] Voltaire... 'Entia non sunt multiplicanda praeter necessita' - William of Occam.... 'You have a right to feel offended, but just cos you are offended doesn't mean you are right'

Offline Richard Symonds

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Re: Swindon's new monument to itself...
« Reply #46 on: February 05, 2014, 10:18:53 AM »
Turn it off as I am sure we must be at the very least paying for the electric!!
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Offline Tobes

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Re: Swindon's new monument to itself...
« Reply #47 on: February 05, 2014, 11:24:48 AM »
Quote
Turn it off as I am sure we must be at the very least paying for the electric!!

If the businesses of the town centre agreed to sponsor it to fully fund it - with a small donation from SBC to allow local third sector providers to promote their services, wouldn't that be a happy compromise?
I do not agree with what you have to say, but I'll defend to the death your right to say it - [attributed to] Voltaire... 'Entia non sunt multiplicanda praeter necessita' - William of Occam.... 'You have a right to feel offended, but just cos you are offended doesn't mean you are right'

Offline Muggins

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Re: Swindon's new monument to itself...
« Reply #48 on: February 05, 2014, 12:05:27 PM »
that's a good idea Tobes and I think we discussed that on TS when it first went in. 

However, if it was a small amount from SBC for the vol sector to promote itself, then why can't the businesses donate that time direct.

No need for the Rate payers to get involved at all.

No doubt SBC considering itself as it does as a business, would be charged full rate to promote itself!

Would it be worth our money to promote them though?
Oi! Listen mush. Old eyes, remember? I’ve been around the block a few times. More than a few. They’ve knocked down the blocks I’ve been around and rebuilt them as bigger blocks. Super blocks. And I’ve been round them as well.  The Doctor (Night Terrors)

Offline Tobes

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Re: Swindon's new monument to itself...
« Reply #49 on: February 05, 2014, 01:15:22 PM »
Mind you, according to The Adver, as Swindon's the town with the most lard-arses per head of population in the west, perhaps a massive telly by a fast food joint really ought to be seen as a piece of reflective civic art...?

 >:D

http://www.swindonadvertiser.co.uk/news/10986620.We___re_the_fattest_town__figures_say/?ref=var_0
I do not agree with what you have to say, but I'll defend to the death your right to say it - [attributed to] Voltaire... 'Entia non sunt multiplicanda praeter necessita' - William of Occam.... 'You have a right to feel offended, but just cos you are offended doesn't mean you are right'

Offline Muggins

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Re: Swindon's new monument to itself...
« Reply #50 on: February 05, 2014, 01:55:38 PM »
Yeh, and don't forget I'm one of 'em! :santa_cheesy:

In fact I could be Swindon's new monument.
Oi! Listen mush. Old eyes, remember? I’ve been around the block a few times. More than a few. They’ve knocked down the blocks I’ve been around and rebuilt them as bigger blocks. Super blocks. And I’ve been round them as well.  The Doctor (Night Terrors)

Offline Tobes

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Re: Swindon's new monument to itself...
« Reply #51 on: February 05, 2014, 03:22:24 PM »
Muggs, if I outlast you, I will stir your ashes into a big metal sculpture casting of you on The Chariot with a Maccy D's in one hand and an outstretched finger ready to poke a recalcitrant councillor in the eye.

I'll sneak it down to Wharf Green and bolt it down to the paving slabs  :thumb:
I do not agree with what you have to say, but I'll defend to the death your right to say it - [attributed to] Voltaire... 'Entia non sunt multiplicanda praeter necessita' - William of Occam.... 'You have a right to feel offended, but just cos you are offended doesn't mean you are right'

Offline Muggins

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Re: Swindon's new monument to itself...
« Reply #52 on: February 05, 2014, 04:57:22 PM »
Fitting tribute to a big lady I think, but could I be holding a McDonalds Vanilla milkshake - that's my weakness.
Not that I have them very often, and they give me an ice cream headache every time.

I like the pointing figure idea, every time a councillors goes through standards committee, he can be led down there and made to stick his own eye on it. It could be called the Swindon Poke!  As in pig in a.....

 :santa_angry:  I like this expression too. Failing that it will have to be what my family calls the 'Muggins Wither' but they've never managed to catch that on camera.   
Oi! Listen mush. Old eyes, remember? I’ve been around the block a few times. More than a few. They’ve knocked down the blocks I’ve been around and rebuilt them as bigger blocks. Super blocks. And I’ve been round them as well.  The Doctor (Night Terrors)

Offline Tobes

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Re: Swindon's new monument to itself...
« Reply #53 on: October 06, 2014, 12:28:34 PM »
Just thought I'd bring this thread up again. In another on TS, I've been accused of 'having a downer' [by implication, unfairly] on an aspect of regeneration.

I think this latest twist regarding the proven failure and huge cost of The Big Screen in Wharf Green proves something; that criticism can very often be absolutely justified - and in the age of the internet, views expressed in advance or at the time of a perceived mistake being made can no longer be swept under the carpet or ignored.

Worse than pessimism is a polly-annerish desire to view everything with a political objective through rose-tinted specs.

History, in the form of Wi-Fi and numerous other less than sparking examples (to which this can now be added), shows the financial cost of projects which aren't subjected to the proper scrutiny we expect from our public servants.

 http://www.swindonadvertiser.co.uk/news/11515701.Private_firm_takes_on_the_Big_Screen/

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NEWS
Private firm takes on the Big Screen

THE big screen at Wharf Green is to be run by a private company in an attempt to generate income for the town.

Having accepted it lacks the necessary expertise, the council is to sign a contract with b-focused, which runs screens in Bristol, Plymouth and Portsmouth.

It is hoped that this company will be able to use both the screen and the surrounding area to put on events, working with other commercial enterprises.

The council will retain 70 per cent of any income generated, while b-focused will keep the rest.

Initially the screen, and therefore to a large extent the content, was operated by the BBC. But in 2013 the BBC pulled out due to funding reasons.The council decided to independently run the screen on a six-month trial basis to work out what it needs to help it generate income and promote local events.

During that time the costs have been assessed and a schedule to get advertising revenue has been developed. A plan to get rid of the screen was considered but it was decided this would be a backwards step that could cost in excess of £100,000.


... and can we remember what was discussed here on TS right back at the beginning of this project, eh?

As usual, sensible questions at the time have been reflected by wise words from Bob Wright:

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Not everyone is in favour of the screen and some have questioned whether people even want it, given that key football matches are not shown, often on police advice.

Councillor Bob Wright (Lab, Central) said: “I don’t think there ever was a demand for a big screen.

“This was part of regeneration and was meant to be a draw and it has had limited benefits. When public demand was there for football events the matches were not available.

“Local residents have complained about the noise from the screen use. Alternative better big screens now exist in local venues.

“Seeking commercial gain when it is not a council core activity just means we are being diverted from the more pressing issue of why the regeneration has had limited success at Wharf Green. A big screen has not been a big attraction and has been relatively expensive.”
I do not agree with what you have to say, but I'll defend to the death your right to say it - [attributed to] Voltaire... 'Entia non sunt multiplicanda praeter necessita' - William of Occam.... 'You have a right to feel offended, but just cos you are offended doesn't mean you are right'

Offline I Could Do That

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Re: Swindon's new monument to itself...
« Reply #54 on: October 06, 2014, 03:15:06 PM »
I read that article.
I also thought Bob Wright summed it up very accurately  :thumb:
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Offline Geoff Reid

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Re: Swindon's new monument to itself...
« Reply #55 on: October 06, 2014, 08:16:15 PM »
Can anyone actually identify a single 'innovative', 'vibrant' and/or 'visionary' scheme the council has pursued for financial gain which has both worked as promised and not resulted in costs/loss to the tax payer?

Offline Tobes

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Re: Swindon's new monument to itself...
« Reply #56 on: October 06, 2014, 10:57:08 PM »
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Can anyone actually identify a single 'innovative', 'vibrant' and/or 'visionary' scheme the council has pursued for financial gain which has both worked as promised and not resulted in costs/loss to the tax payer?

I can't...  :-\

I actually feel slightly sorry for the conservatives on this issue, as it appear that they're trapped in an ideological cleft stick. The policy of the national party is to pare everything back to the bone - meaning councils are becoming administrators of an ever limited fiefdom which has seen ever more elements of their traditional provision dominated by short termism and profiteering private companies.

What else would a conservative party do? i guess as the local party is dominated by suit wearing members who believe they have innate business skills, on one level it at least in theory makes sense that they could/should use those skills to ensure 'bang to the buck' is achieved by managing the civic possessions to maximum efficiency.

What I find strange though, is as you point out Geoff - where are the successes? Are they merely hidden from us - or ignored by the local media? Does the local party simply think its been unlucky rather than incompetent? Or do they blame the opposition? .... Or even us.... ?

I suppose I'd rather see the council trying to invest our money wisely in projects which ought to make a return on that investment if the profit can be used to protect otherwise slashed service and provision - and I accept it won't always work, but recent experience seem to show a lot of projects which I argue on balance have worked against civic and societal interests.

I hope they either raise their game - or change policy and stick to what they ought to be able to do.

Like preventing a road junction in the busiest part of town which disabled pedestrians can't use.

Or granting lucrative licenses to fraudsters, repeat offenders and violent criminals.

... and plenty more besides...!  :coolsmiley:
I do not agree with what you have to say, but I'll defend to the death your right to say it - [attributed to] Voltaire... 'Entia non sunt multiplicanda praeter necessita' - William of Occam.... 'You have a right to feel offended, but just cos you are offended doesn't mean you are right'