Owen Temple & Margaret Nealis

Liberal Democrat campaigners for Consett North Learn more

Shotley Hospital Ward should reopen in February

by Owen Temple on 6 January, 2017

That’s the good news I got from a health scrutiny meeting this morning, directly from the Chief Executive of the County Durham and Darlington Foundation Trust. In response to my question she told me that the “owners” of the hospital, NHS Property Services Limited, had told her that their contractors should finish the remedial work they […]

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History offers more hope than despair

by Owen Temple on 23 December, 2016

In a world which many people think is going to the dogs, I found the following graph really helpful: If it encourages you too, you might be interested in the source of it: A history of global living conditions in five charts. It contains a lot of very interesting detail as well as convincing arguments as […]

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Helpers, Margaret and Owen have been out putting leaflets and Christmas cards through people’s doors in Consett. We’re not naive enough not to realise that quite a few go straight into recycling – but this year it might be a mistake. One of my extremely kind deliverers found a £5 note on a doorstep as he was […]

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Bin collections will stay the same so people are asked to put their bins out on their usual collection day. Real Christmas tree collections can be booked online free of charge between 19 December 2016 and 8 January 2017 at www.durham.gov.uk.  Alternatively call 03000 261 000 when offices are open (see below). Most council offices and […]

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Am I just getting old?

by Owen Temple on 12 December, 2016

Or has the world gone slightly bonkers! Don’t get me wrong, I’m fully supportive of the proposed new Care Home which gained planning permission this afternoon. It’s to be based on the site of the former Victoria Club at the junction of Delves Lane and Gloucester Road, and will provide an impressive building and up to […]

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Discouraging signal from DCC Labour

by Owen Temple on 7 December, 2016

OK – DCC have suspended the dismissal notices and promised a review, but the tone at County Hall today suggested no change of heart towards Durham’s Teaching Assistants, just a change of tactic. The response to the question about whether ATL (100+ TA members) would be included in negotiations was a straight “NO”.  But Unite […]

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Latest Briefing to Councillors on Teaching Assistants

by Owen Temple on 5 December, 2016

I pass this on to everyone so that you can be as well informed as your councillor: I am writing to update you further on developments today concerning the teaching assistants dispute and proposed strike action this week by Unison. Following further constructive meetings with Unison, they have today called off the industrial action planned […]

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For the last year Liberal Democrats on Durham County Council have pressed for negotiations to resolve issues around the variety of contracts currently held by the county’s teaching assistants. We therefore warmly welcome the council’s change of direction, withdrawal of dismissal notices, and the promise of a real review of Teaching Assistants’ roles, functions, job […]

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Clock this!

by Owen Temple on 1 December, 2016

I’m delighted to report that Durham County Council, Cllr Derek Hicks, Cllr Alex Watson, and I have reached agreement to replace the clock which once stood at the bottom of the bus station. The difference will be that this will be a much more substantial clock than the one which preceded it – essential if […]

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A Welcome Change – but is it a sea change?

by Owen Temple on 1 December, 2016

Durham County Council’s decision to suspend the dismissal notices it had issued to many of its teaching assistants is very welcome – and long overdue. Likewise its decision to undertake a review of teaching assistants’ roles, functions, job descriptions and activities to see whether they properly reflect their true value. I wouldn’t be human, however, if […]

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