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Derek Flint - has left us


John Wright
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On 11/10/2020 at 7:38 AM, Derek Flint said:

Utter bollocks.

 

I forgot. All coppers are sweetness and light now. Now they are not as bad as the old days ( and they were bad ) but I would always avoid getting involved with them. American cops for example , Italian or Spanish cops when they get a few footie fan heads to crack?  Violence against the public is just in cop DNA. Except in America of course. Did I forget Hong Kong or any other bastions of freedom?  

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  • 1 year later...

Well, for the first time in 18 months I've stepped foot on the Island. I've been involved with Porsche Club GB for a number of years - as far back as 2005 when I first started giving safety briefs to visiting car clubs. I've supported every visit they have made, right up to 2019, which was the last one before lockdown.

The old boy who ran them, Geoff Ives, is not in the greatest of health, and he called me late last year to see if I'd take over the mantle. I couldn't really say no, and so we went to press with 30 rooms to offer and a 3 day visit.

It sold out within hours.

And so, sans Porsche (having sold mine a few months prior) we landed on the 12th May for a 5 night visit. I've given myself a few days to reflect on what I found, and thought it might be useful just to 'report back'. I was apprehensive about returning on many levels and was similarly anxious as to what I would find, and how I would feel. 23 years is a long time in one place, and since leaving we have moved house twice. Had we ultimately done the right thing?

The first positive was that I felt 'at home'. The Island is just so familiar that I didn't expect it to be anything else. And one of the greatest joys was reconnecting with people - both planned and unplanned. That was just magic, and helped me realise how strong some of our friendships are. It was good to see relatives still there, and make sure they were OK too.

A benevolent friend and former neighbour was kind enough to lend me a Porsche, so I didn't look a complete muppet leading a sports car tour in a Hyundai i20. What that brought into focus was that truly, the Manx population has nothing to moan about in respect of the state of the roads. The UK is far, far worse! We had some great, swift but sure driving and every visitor enjoyed it.

And I found myself evangelising about the place as much as I ever had. Extolling its virtues, good places to visit and things to see. Two great days of weather helped, but as we all know, when the sun is shining there is nowhere else like it.

But there was another side. The place looks unloved, and far from prosperous. Ramsey still has pavements strewn with weeds, and the ever-increasing number of brown field sites detract from lovely little spots like outside the courthouse, and the still-beautiful Mooragh. As for Douglas - well, we didn't get a lot for our 20-odd million, did we? An abject failure, and a high street which really did feel like it was on its knees.

People are trying hard. Jacksons went above and beyond for a visit. Fynoderee put on a very warm welcome and Ramsey Park Hotel is almost 'running hot' it was that busy. As ever, the potential is just at the door, but the Island really does need billions that aren't available spending on it to catch up. Every derelict plot moves the goal further away.

We left having had a fantastic break, and I'm looking forward to doing it all again very soon. But the question is; was it ultimately the right move?

The first thing is tax. I give too much to the treasury now. That stings. But beyond that, I think we are doing OK. We live in Lytham, which is bloody outstanding, with the same sort of town feel that Ramsey had, but more amenities that Douglas. We can be in London in 2 hrs 30 minutes from the door, and the biggest thing for me is the opportunities. I was struggling on island for a meaningful second career. Today, I'm a university lecturer, and am undertaking a professional doctorate. That would never have happened back 'home'.

And that is a key; the island still does feel like 'home'. Maybe one day we will return in some shape or form, but to be honest, it would have to be on a time-share basis. I really want the best of both worlds! It remains a source of frustration to me that the Island seems unable to move forward, resting on pipe-dreams of 500,000 visitors but with no real strategy. Meanwhile, the UK has its many faults, but at least there is a degree of progressiveness and opportunity.

I still love you, Ellan Vannin, but you need to pick up your skirts and run now, rather than just amble along. Manage your most recent mistakes, but stride strongly into the future.

 

Del

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15 minutes ago, finlo said:

Total clear out of the civil service would be a start!


Remains to be seen if the new Treasury Minister also plans to preserve the gargantuan government establishment by dipping into reserves until the end of the term of office of the Cannan Administration

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35 minutes ago, SleepyJoe said:


Remains to be seen if the new Treasury Minister also plans to preserve the gargantuan government establishment by dipping into reserves until the end of the term of office of the Cannan Administration

Well I think that's Alfs plan, or rather Caldric Randalls plan, and Dr Alex will follow whatever he is told to follow.  As we saw with the 500k visitors a year madness

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36 minutes ago, cissolt said:

Well I think that's Alfs plan, or rather Caldric Randalls plan, and Dr Alex will follow whatever he is told to follow.  As we saw with the 500k visitors a year madness

If there is an immediate lesson to be learnt by MHKs from the Ranson case it is to be critical of the "information" provided and from whom. 

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3 minutes ago, Gladys said:

If there is an immediate lesson to be learnt by MHKs from the Ranson case it is to be critical of the "information" provided and from whom. 

If there was any wisdom in that respect they should have taken note of AC's shot across the bows last October.

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8 minutes ago, doc.fixit said:

But, but there are many face worker CS who are very good at their job and very helpful to the customer.

Yes, agreed doc. 

The big problem in my opinion is the culture that runs through the whole of government. "Don't rock the boat, don't change anything, it's served us well for years" is the mantra. By "us" they mean themselves, heaven forbid that the gravy train should lose steam, well I think it's about to, unless they change the fuel! 

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