Tuesday, 31 December 2013

Honouring My Mother

My mother - Joyce Jones, BEM
I was delighted to learn that my mother, Joyce Jones, had been included in the New Year's Honours. The official listing, for the award of a British Empire Medal, says: 

"Mrs Joyce Pauline Jones. For services to the community in New Tredegar, Caerphilly through the New Tredegar Communities First Partnership (New Tredegar, Caerphilly)"

My father, sister, brothers and I are all very proud of you Mam.

Monday, 30 December 2013

Ed Miliband's New Year Message 2014

"We are in the midst of the biggest cost of living crisis in a generation. It's the way people feel." 
Ed Miliband's New Year message for 2014: Labour's programme for change.

Tuesday, 24 December 2013

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas! 
That's all for this year - 
so a Happy New Year as well!

Monday, 23 December 2013

A Hard Rain's A-Gonna Fall

 Hardly a Christmas carol I know, but an old favourite nonetheless!

Saturday, 21 December 2013

Royal Berks Hospital: Time For A Fresh Start

RBH: Time For Better Leadership
With the announcement on Friday night of the departure of RBH Chief Executive Ed Donald it is time the hospital trust governors ensures that the New Year brings a fresh start for the hospital. 
Clearly the opportunity presented by the departure of the last Chairman in March 2012 to deliver strong strategic leadership has been missed, so will they act now?

While we all want the hospital to do well - and individual care can be excellent - recent reports suggest that the hospital is struggling to maintain standards against a range of national measures. The health watch-dogs Monitor and CQC may have more to say about the RBH soon.

Add to that:

  • the recent collaboration in the controversial and utterly bonkers idea of creating a new secondary school for East Reading at the London Street site - with the governing body apparently not being told about this venture or the survey work undertaken earlier in the year, until relatively recently 
  • the £18million overspend on a botched IT scheme at a time of extreme financial stress 
  • and the Trust's complete failure to engage with Reading Council in sorting out car parking pressures in and around the hospital, leading local councillors to brand the hospital as a "bad neighbour" at a recent planning committee.

Take all this together and it's hard not to think that the Friday night announcement of the departure of the chief could be seen as being the action of an increasingly troubled organisation.

I'm always prepared to stand up for the NHS, but cannot defend a poorly run organisation which cares little about the impact it has on the local community in which it sits.

Redlands deserves better, Reading deserves better.