Thursday 7 December 2023
I was on holiday down in Cornwall four years ago. I found an art exhibition at St Ives and went in for a browse. This was my favourite piece. I chatted to the lady who made it.
Wednesday 6 December 2023
Thanks for popping in. Toodle pip. ilona
Tuesday 5 December 2023
My bank has just announced that they will be closing our Scunthorpe branch in April 2024. Over the last few years they have been installing computers in the wall, and serve yourself cash machines. Staff numbers have been reduced and they expect everyone to sort themselves out once they step inside the door.
It's been a while since I have been in there. They made it perfectly clear that they don't want customers to come inside and bother the staff. On the odd occasion I have needed to conduct my business over the counter, I have been quizzed by the one floating member of staff, and when I explained what I wanted to do, I have been steered towards the automatic hole in the wall.
I hesitate and say, I don't know how to do that. The member of staff then has to make the transaction for me while I watch. The only thing I have to do is key in my pin number. I stand back and let them get on with it. They hand me a print out slip of paper.
Then the plandemic reared it's ugly head and I dreaded going to the bank because they only allowed one person in at a time. Those waiting had to queue all the way down the High Street. What a fiasco that was. At that point I started visiting my local Post Office to withdraw cash from my account. That has worked well for me.
A news article has caught my attention. In the Yorkshire Post the headline says, 'It is a lie to claim that demand for in-person banking services is in decline'. The writer, Andrew Vine, bemoans the fact that his local Halifax branch shuts next month on the grounds that customer demand is falling.
Quote from the article. . . . .
We’re being fed an untruth by the banking industry that demand for in-person services is in decline, when the evidence of our own eyes tells us different. What’s happening is less to do with declining demand than a determination by the banks to cut the costs of staffing and maintaining branches by forcing customers online. But it’s part of the vicious circle that the banks are creating in order to massacre the branch network.
He is exactly right. Closing banks and building societies is part of a long term plan to move everybody over to Central Bank Digital Currency. People think it's wonderful to be able to conduct all their financial business on their hand held smart phone. This addiction to their gadget will cost them dearly when CBDC comes in. Computer fraud and stolen identities, are already making life difficult for those who's bank account is plundered and the account drops into the red.
I will continue with my method of spending cash as often as I can. It gives me peace of mind.
Thanks for popping in. Toodle pip. ilona
This headline gives the impression that the market has recently been cancelled. In fact it was decided in March last year that it was going to be the last Christmas market. It became too big and far too busy. I went a few years ago and it was a waste of time. Couldn't get anywhere near the stalls, the crush was most unpleasant.
The decision was announced nine months ago on the basis that we simply could not continue delivering an event that had been deemed a significant risk to public safety.
Read the story here. It's not only about Lincoln Christmas Market, it's about changing the word Christmas.
A popular Christmas market in County Durham has been renamed the "Winter Market" - seemingly in an attempt to become more inclusive.
The Bowes Museum, which was founded by the ancestors of the Queen Mother, has this year removed the word 'Christmas' from the event's title.
Councils are also cancelling lights switch-ons because they are strapped for cash. Some are declaring bankruptcy.
Towns including Bournemouth, Bolton, Medway and Leominster are cancelling the events in order to save cash.
In Bournemouth, the switch-on was ditched after its £44,000 budget was scrapped in a cost-saving exercise - the council currently has a £44m hole in its finances.
Medway Council took similar action and said it would save £75,000 - as they seek to fill a £17m budget gap.
Make the most of it. It could be the last year we have Christmas celebrations.
Toodle pip. ilona