Thursday, 8 September 2011


There has recently been renewed activity by Criminals posing as Police Officers and arranging to collect Credit Cards as "evidence" in an investigation.

If you are approached or telephoned in this way DO NOT surrender your credit cards or even details of them without contacting the Police (on the 101 number) and your credit card issuer (phone number on your credit card statement).

Genuine Police Officers would never approach you in this way.

Please tell your elderly relatives and neighbours not to open the door to anyone they do not know and not to hand over any cards or money on the doorstep.

Incidents of this nature can be reported to Crime stoppers on 0800 555111, where your call will be taken in confidence and you do not have to give your details.

Monday, 5 September 2011

Water, Water, Everywhere ....

Water, water, every where,
And all the boards did shrink;
Water, water, every where,
Nor any drop to drink.

"The Rime of the Ancient Mariner"
S.T. Coleridge 1798

A friend of mine has an elderly and vulnerable parent who has recently had a particularly upsetting experience with Thames Water

It seems that the Government is introducing new legislation regarding the ownership and liability for upkeep of sewers and water services (between service providers and property owners) and it seems that there is a flurry of activity to try to get matters in order before the legislation comes into force. Thus, the more that service providers can lumber property owners (or Insurers) with costs, the better. The 'flurry of activity' has included surveys for "Customer Side Leaks"; the property owners being liable for fixing leaks and returning a “Leak Fixed Form”.

There is a particularly unusual arrangement of Stop-valves for this property and its neighbours.

A Contractor turned up unannounced and repaired the Stop-valve on the pavement outside this particular property.

Daughter of said property owner phoned and e-mailed Thames Water pointing out that the Stop-valve outside the property was not unique to that property and that Thames Water should already have known this.

The 60-year old (may be even be older than that) Stop-valve on the footway had thus been leaking and was replaced by a brand-new one of modern design, since when it has not leaked.

Thames Water totally failed to grasp the point about the layout of the services to this group of ten houses and the possibly distressing nature of the demanding letters that were sent.

Following further exchange of e-mails a cheque for £75 has been sent to the property owner as a gesture of goodwill.

One would hope that Thames Water employees would have learned something from this but one somehow doubts it ....

Back to the Ancient Mariner:

(S)he went like one that hath been stunned,
And is of sense forlorn:
A sadder and a wiser (wo)man,
(S)he rose the morrow morn.