Owen Temple & Margaret Nealis

Liberal Democrat campaigners for Consett North Learn more

After the recess

by Owen Temple on 23 August, 2016

Special Council meeting about Teaching Assistants

by Owen Temple on 28 July, 2016

As the holiday season starts, councillors get an email out of the blue telling us that there is a Special Council Meeting on September 14th, the only subject matter being Teaching Assistants. I don’t know when we’ll hear any more, but I know which side I’m on:

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All Planned Out

by Owen Temple on 22 July, 2016

That is the self-description of one of the mere 15 people who attended the consultation about the County Durham Plan at St Patrick’s Church Hall. Admittedly some potential attenders may never have made it into the meeting which had to be entered by the back door, not the more usual main hall entry, but the […]

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County Durham Plan – URGENT call to Consett!

by Owen Temple on 13 July, 2016

Consett residents will get their only direct and personal chance to feed into the “new” Durham County Plan tomorrow (Thursday July 14th) at St Patrick’s Church Hall, between 4 o’clock and 7.30. This “son of” the earlier attempt at a county plan which was trashed by a Planning Inspector last year has all the same flaws […]

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The Chilcott Report is full of it, the failure of politicians to challenge the intelligence which misled them into believing that Saddam had Weapons of Mass Destruction. Apparently the information they were given was partial, omitting key caveats, and swallowed too easily. I don’t pretend it’s on a par, but the willingness of Durham county councillors to […]

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Small impacts

by Owen Temple on 8 July, 2016

As a councillor there is enough beating of one’s head against a wall to make even small impacts rewarding. Today, as expected, the Mental Health Trust for our area made its decision on provision for elderly sufferers from severe dementia, sufferers whose behaviours are so challenging that they cannot be catered for outside of hospital. The decision […]

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Chilcott Enquiry

by Owen Temple on 6 July, 2016

As we re-run the events of 2004 across the media, I remember how proud I was of Charles Kennedy’s stand in the face of a good deal of pressure from politicians and media. You can watch hime make the case against the Iraq War here

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In November 2015, I sought to get sight of the Corporate Management Team report which ultimately led to the dismissal of 2,700 teaching assistants and the offer to re-engage them on dramatically worse terms. I was refused permission on two grounds. The grounds for refusal were spelt out carefully and, whilst I did not like them, I […]

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No Comment!

by Owen Temple on 17 June, 2016

Durham County Council won a Municipal Journal Achievement Award last night for Excellence in Governance and Scrutiny.  This prestigious national award was in recognition of our innovative approach to engaging people, through overview and scrutiny, our ‘slow to 20’ campaign, and through the area action partnerships and the recent consultation and poll on devolution. From […]

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Litter pick with insight

by Owen Temple on 17 June, 2016

Yesterday I had a very pleasant morning litter-picking with Groundwork, fourteen year five pupils from St Patrick’s junior school, fellow councillor, neighbourhood wardens and a teaching assistant. The children were terrific. I asked one if he was a volunteer or a pressed man. He grinned and insisted he was a volunteer, supported by the statement, […]

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