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TUNBRIDGE WELLS A picket has been organised this evening from 7.30pm outside the Trinity Theatre where an Election debate has been arranged  but it has been ‘hijacked’ by the three main Labour, Conservatives and Lib Dems. The event was organised by the Kent & Sussex Courier.

The UKIP and Green Party will from a protest outside the Theatre and on Twitter as they were deliberately excluded.

The Daily Mail owned Kent & Sussex Courier defended themselves on Twitter:

@TunWellsPeople we chose 3 main parties as they had 97 per cent of twell vote at last gen elec- we are also in line with bbc election policy
@TunWellsPeople we think the debate will b more purposeful if we have just three, rather than diluting it with all candidates

Source: twitter.com

You can read  ‘the debate’ on Twitter on ‘KSCourier’. I wonder if there will be any hecklers inside. It is unsurprising there was 97% of the vote for the main parties, if the media suppresses other parties.

I have asked  the Courier as to when there will be a debate for the excluded parties. When I receive a reply I put it up on here.

Update: 7,.30pm The UKIP & Green Parties have arrived. They are now outside the Trinity Theatre where they have been BANNED!

daveybarnett At #twhustings, fought my way past the Greens & UKIP. (@ Trinity Theatre)

Source: twitter.com

The Institute of Advanced Motorists (IAM) has called on motorists to pay extra attention to cyclists looking to avoid potholes as the nation emerges from the recent snow and ice.

From roadcc’s website:

“In a press release issued by the IAM, Neil Greig, the organisation’s Director of Policy and Research, said that “as well as worrying about your vehicle, with potholes being a major cause of suspension failure, drivers should be particularly conscious of cyclists and motorcyclists trying to get past a pothole and give them a wide berth.”

Mr Greig added: “They are entitled to a wobble and would appreciate not having a motorist attempting to overtake just as they avoid a hole in the road.”

He advised that cyclists and motorcyclists alike should “look well ahead and change direction early so they have time to deal with the holes, and so that their movements don’t cause surprise to other road users.”

Potholes become particularly prevalent after spells of icy weather when water penetrates cracks in the road and expands as it freezes, causing cracks in the tarmac. ”

In the UK, motorists are actually expected to drive slowly by cyclists and  leave plenty of room between them and the cyclist, according to the Highway Code.

There are numerous things on the road that can obstruct cyclists, not just potholes but glass, from previous crashes or wine bottles thrown on the road, dead animals and bit of car wreck, road signs and other bits of rubbish that accumulate on the road side.

It is incredible these days that the victim loses his job but the perpetrator does not as in this case in Tonbridge in Kent:

A employee who was sexually harrassed at a Hildenborough Beefeater chain, and won his case at an Employment Tribunal, has had to leave his job.

However Robert Deboick,  who lost the case, was allowed to continue working at the Whitbread establishment.  His wife Lisa, is the General Manager.  This article made front page headlines in the Kent & Sussex Courier this week.

This has outraged local residents, former employees and shareholders, some of whom  regularly  used to eat at the Hilden Manor restaurant.

Some are planning a rally on Tuesday in the quiet commuter village in protest.

It is not just this story, but what they say in their ‘corporate spiel’ that just does not add up in this instance.

A SEX PEST is continuing to work in a senior role at a popular Tonbridge restaurant, the Courier can reveal.

Robert DeBoick held on to his job at Hilden Manor Beefeater on London Road – despite groping a male former work colleague.

A tribunal in Ashford heard he also indecently exposed himself to his victim on two occasions – and was warned about his behaviour by Kent Police and his bosses at Whitbread.

The victim, who cannot be named for legal reasons, is furious that DeBoick, whose wife Lisa is the venue’s general manager, kept his job as kitchen manager even though an employment tribunal ruled against him.

He said: “I’m very angry he’s still there. I only found out recently he was still in the same job, when I was basically forced to move on.

Whitbread’s website states that Beefeaters are ‘warm and welcoming’, a ‘welcome with a smile’:

Beefeater logo“First established 35 years ago, Beefeater is a warm and welcoming restaurant that is ideal for any occasion, from a quick bite to eat, through to meeting up with friends or celebrating with family.”


At the tribunal, DeBoick put it down to ‘horseplay’:

“DeBoick admitted at the October tribunal to touching his victim’s nipples, testicles and bottom – and also to telling him he loved him.

He said it was all part of kitchen “banter” and “horseplay” which regularly occurred between members of staff.”

Alan Parker, the CEO, states on Whitbread’s website:

“Our pub restaurant brands – Beefeater, Brewers Fayre, Table Table and Taybarns – located on joint sites alongside Premier Inn, continue to gain market share and delivered strong growth, with total sales* up 6.9% and like for like sales up 2.1%. “

Source: whitbread.co.uk

Whitbread also manage other brands:-

“Whitbread Group PLC is a UK-based hospitality company, managing several popular brands in hotels, restaurants and coffee houses, including Premier Inn, Table Table, Brewers Fayre, Taybarns, Beefeater and Costa Coffee. The company’s headquarters are based in Dunstable, Bedfordshire. The company was founded as a brewery by Samuel Whitbread and Thomas Shewell in 1742 but has since halted all interests in brewing. The Company is listed on the London Stock Exchange and currently is a constituent of the FTSE 100 Index.

Whitbread have a Press Cutting list on their website but the article from the Kent & Sussex Courier has, as yet, not been put up.

Whitbread also state that  ‘Doing Nothing is not an Option’, under the title ‘Corporate Responsibility’ on their website.

“We believe doing nothing is not an option.  So we’ve been working on a plan which we’re calling Good Together . It is a demonstration of our Whitbread Way – our values of genuine, confident and committed.  Good Together is big and bold  – covering lots of areas like energy efficiency and reducing waste, sourcing the most sustainable raw materials such as coffee beef and fish, encouraging healthier eating and further developing our charity programmes.”

Source: whitbread.co.uk

and finally, this is what Whitbread say about the people they employ

“Our 33,000 people serve over 9 million customers every month. And as the frontline of our business, we are 100% dependent on our people to deliver our brand promises, day in and day out. That’s why we only employ the very best people in the hospitality industry – and we do all that we can to keep them.

There isn’t a typical Whitbread employee. Despite being from different backgrounds, Whitbread people are always friendly, passionate and ready to help.

And they’re nice people to be around. (YES THEY DID SAY THAT)

They come from hundreds of countries across the world, and from all age groups. There are common things we believe in – people and team work; passion for winning; continuous improvement and caring for guests – but it’s the diversity of people who make up our company and their ability to meet the needs of our customers that make us successful.”

Source: whitbread.co.uk


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