Notting Hill Carnival should be renamed ‘Stabbing Hill Carnival’

There comes a point when the Notting Hill Carnival gets 15 stabbings, over 450 arrests, loads of vandalism and dozens of injured police officers, when we need to  call it a day on the Notting Hill Carnival. Either that, reduce the numbers and get it ticketed or move it elsewhere to a more controlled area.

No one appears to be listening to the residents, the businesses or those refusing to go because ‘it is not a family event’ anymore. It is a Crime fest.

At Brighton Pride it was far safer despite large numbers attending, better managed and it was largely ticketed, only a handful of arrests.

The Notting Hill Carnival has become a notorious hot spot of criminal activity for years. The police can only do what they can but there comes a point we have to say that the event is now out-of-control. It is not a ‘fun’ event when where are stabbings and criminals roaming through wild.

I have been there a few times, but I would not go on the Monday anymore. Martial arts friends who have been there, who I used to go on a course with, said they narrowly missed being stabbed at the event and even they refuse to go now.

I feel sorry for the local businesses and residents to have to put up with all the anti social behaviour in their gardens too. The numbers need to be restricted and it needs to be ticketed. We have seen from the Hyde Park stabbing frenzies that large unticketed events do not work.  Coming from a hospitality background myself, the Notting Hill Carnival looks highly disorganised. The police have done some great work trying to arrest a lot of trouble makers, but I expect they only got some of them. As an Event Steward, I am used to see businesses and residents  supporting local festivals, cheering people on, but at the Notting Hill Festival many of them want to leave their property and business! There is something wrong here.

It is time for change, people have changed and knife crime is getting worse. Let’s hope that Sadiq Khan takes some action. I have contacted the Met for more data on the event and data on how many women and men were arrested.

Not all lefties such a myself support anti-social  criminal behaviour.  Lefties want to feel safe too!


Croydon’s First PRIDEfest 2016


Hundreds of people from mostly the LGBT community turned up on a hot, summers day to the very first Croydon Pride, on 28th August which was organised just in six weeks.

Croydon’s first openly gay Mayor Wayne Trakas-Lawlor  said ‘this is  the first time Croydon Council has supported a Pride Festival in the borough and, indeed, the first time in a very long time since any Pride-related event was celebrated here at all”.

Everyone seem to be having a good time, with generally a positive reaction from the general public who took photos of people in the Parade.

The Pride was a free event, not ticketed and the atmosphere was ‘happy’, family-orientated and not ‘loud and rowdy’ so it was a really nice and pleasant event, not too large and overwhelming. It was easy too get to as well, and you didn’t have crowds of people on the trains unlike at BrightonPride.  The police looked chilled out and relaxed.  I didn’t see any large police vans hiding in side streets. I think smaller Prides can be a lot safer and less stressy.  I didn’t see people so plastered they were causing annoyance.

However, some revellers were littering the streets with plastic bottles, beer cans and cigarette butts but a few considerate community minded volunteers helped pick up their rubbish. Local businesses were pleased to see so many people turn up although some hadn’t realised there was event despite the Council handing out several leaflets.

We went to a local independent cafe, and ordered a meal with soft drinks, and kept well away from the Boozy bars; it also meant that we had a seat too.

One of the people on the podium did a shout out to various sexualities   but one young asexual was disappointed that asexuals were not given a mention.  Organisers at Croydon Pride are keen to do more for asexuals at the next Croydon Pride.

PHOTO BELOW: CroydonPride Parade


UK Age Discrimination & Job Ads

Age discrimination is a big problem in British society and some job ads are targetting younger employees to avoid paying higher wages or for other reasons.

This is just one example from of a job ad in Kent:-

“The XXX organisation is seeking to recruit a full time receptionist for their main office located in Sevenoaks.

The role will be responsible for operating the Group switchboard, meeting and greeting visitors to the building as well as providing assistance to the Facilities department during busy periods.

This would be an ideal role for a school or college leaver, looking to start their career within an office environment.”

Beaulieu has got in touch with the Equalities and Human Rights Commission and ACAs for their comments. The organisation concerned has also been contacted.

If you see any other similar job adverts,  please show them to us and share your experiences of age discrimination and any positive outcomes.



Match of the Day – Big Pants Watch

Never mind the cycling on #Rio2016, many people in Britain are staying up late this evening to watch if Gary Lineker  will present Match of the Day wearing his pants after losing a bet about Leicester City.  Imagine many us all sitting on our sofas right now with baited breath…

Well, we had a bit of a ‘teaser’ earlier as he was spotted with an ironing board…that was a good sign……

At 1030 when Match of the Day  started – he actually did it, although he wore Leicester City white boxers, which really isn’t the same as dodgy Y-fronts. Then  my friend promptly spilt his coffee on the sofa….and this was not even his sofa – it was his sister’s, who’s on holiday and he now has got some explaining to do…


Volunteer receives 36 pages of Red Tape to work for a Charity

Many of us like to volunteer and put something back. Some charities make it really easy for people to volunteer, but others, who  want to be  office volunteers seem to be lumbered with mountains and mountains of red tape.

I wanted to volunteer for a small charity for  just for a few hours  in an office in something I have a keen interest in, but yesterday, I was swamped with 36 pages of tedious but well meaning corporate Red Tape. I cannot even bear looking at it again.

It was all written in legal jargon and generally in  a fairly unfriendly language as if to say, ‘watch your back or you will out’.  Apparently volunteers must  even have an appraisal to discuss ‘performance’.  There was nothing to welcome the volunteer at all, and to say, ‘we thank you for wanting to help us ‘ no, none of that.  Sexual relationships were discussed on the forms and if the volunteer had a relationship with another staff member, one of them would be ‘asked to leave’.  Then of course, if you were a politically minded person, you would have to ‘speak to your superiors’ if you were lobbying which could affect the charity, as they need to be impartial. Generally fair points, but I felt that I would always be ‘on edge’ at the charity.

At the end of the day, the charity does not own me, but looking at the amount of legalise I received,  like to think that they do.

The irony is that the charity concerned was crying out for volunteers.


Duke of Westminster & Being sent to Boarding School at Seven

The Duke of Westminster, on Desert Island Discs, said that he didn’t like being sent away at seven  to Sunningdale School,  in Berkshire, which was part of his family tradition..

My own father went to that prep school and  all he remembered about that it was being good at the high jump, but he also remembered being sent away at around seven years old too, and being deeply unhappy.    Though my own brother went to boarding school at about twelve, it was certainly better than at seven, but  in his case, it suited him.  Everyone in our own family thinks it is wrong to send children at seven to boarding school.

We should question this tradition, and it is great that the Duke of Westminster had brought this matter up.


Citizen Journalism Project:Workplace Bullying Survey

I will be publishing the results of this Survey in about a year’s time on my blog. I am really interested to hear from people, what happened to them and to hear tips from those who have succeeded in their case (or cases).

Having been through this myself, and in  cases where I have brought the matter up (although was difficult), I have won them (in various ways) and even had an apology from of the bullies , I can share my own tips via the Survey too. It is really difficult, but with the right support and help, you can beat the Workplace Bully.   Some of the stuff I went through, it was so crazy, you wouldn’t believe it, but it is amazing what people will do when the  boss is away and colleagues are bored and haven’t been given enough work to do.  Other than the violence, I have been through everything!

If you would like to complete the Survey, please fill it in here:

For all of us who have been through all this, I highly recommend The Workplace Bullying Institute on Youtube. Brilliant organisation, they really know how to tackle them.


Update: January 2017 Several good responses so far and some useful tips. Some shocking results. Thanks for providing with me details so far.


UK: Mint Staffing – Agency staff & Businesses claim they’ve been unpaid

Several angry staff employed by @Mintstaffing , who supply highly trained hospitality staff for such events as  Pride Brighton, football events and the Grand National, claim that they have not been paid  on Twitter.

Many people who have contacted Mint Staffing  about have  been blocked by the Agency.Their website is  also down, and goes to a white page with ‘GONE’ on the banner:-

(10/08/2016) Update: The website above now works, all very strange.

Companies House confirm they do not have a company registered Mint Staffing Solutions but have a Mint Staffing Limited, based in Manchester.

Those who have not been plan to  take this matter up further.


Southern Rail Strike: Staff should use alternatives to 5 day strikes says Ex TSSA member and delegate

I generally agree with the rail staff that it is wrong for all sorts of reasons to have no guards on the trains.

There ought to be a new or more effective alternative to strikes as long as five days where it jeopardises the economy, other people’s jobs, those who need to work or visit hospitals, or  attend other essential appointments. Or they should find ways to ‘work with commuters’ but still targeting Govia in another way.  Right now, rail users are being held to ransom, though many do agree with the strikers, but disagree with the way they are doing it. A five day strike is completely unreasonable.

The workplace is often stressful enough without the extra worry of being late for work, and the threat of being sacked. The low  and unpaid  will be  particularly badly effected as many of them do not have cars to use as an alternative to the train. Those of us in rural areas have trouble even getting any buses, some don’t even start until 9.30am and finish at 5.. Others may have already taken their holiday and don’t have any left.

You never near of any striking staff member offering to help anyone needing  to work or to visit the hospital.  No they are out their standing with placards picketing and chatting on telly. If they helped people get to work, then perhaps the Strikers could get more respect.  It would be good if commuters would help car share with others to minimise the disruption. Working Together with Rail Users may help in some small way. As a successful campaigner myself, you need to get the majority of  rail users ‘on side’.I expect most of them are unhappy with Govia too.

There needs to be a lot more talk on alternatives, rather than the old and tired  Labouresque techniques that frequently do not work and create animosity. Not all Union members support Labour anyway and  have quite different  and often visionary views.  In fact, with Govia getting less money this week, perhaps this will make them even more keen to remove guards as  cost cutting exercise.

It is all a horrible mess and I am glad I generally travel by bicycle.