Comment: New hospital remains little more than a distant dream

Comment: New hospital remains little more than a distant dream

Comment: New hospital remains little more than a distant dream

First published in News Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author by , Chief Reporter

The health trust in charge of Watford General Hospital moved last week to reassure people about its commitment to rebuild the hospital.

Chief executive Samantha Jones insisted in an open letter to this newspaper the trust was “100 per cent committed to the project”. Which was reassuring, if not a bit confusing, considering no one has yet questioned the trust’s commitment to the long-standing health campus project.

In fact, to people in Watford, the whole scheme has always been unquestionably about Watford General. Without the new hospital the scheme has promised for the last decade, it is just a huge housing development on the doorstep of one of the most densely populated areas of the town.

What was less reassuring was Ms Jones’s statement that it could take the health trust up to 18 months to reveal its clinical strategy, which will outline what the new Watford General Hospital would look like.

Any maths enthusiasts will notice this means the timescale ends around June 2015 – a month after the General Election.

This week, the trust elaborated on the decision saying it had rolled back the timetable to finalise the strategy as it has just appointed new board members and needs time to assess all the options. In the summer, this paper was told the clinical strategy could be unveiled as early as autumn last year.

The decisions in strategy have implications that will affect the lives of people in south west Hertfordshire for decades. So it is not unreasonable for the trust to ask for time to get it right.

But the latest delay is worrying as the forthcoming election cycle is unique opportunity for the trust to win serious financial backing for a regeneration plan.

In 2015, the town will have three parties vying for the parliamentary seat, all of which feel they have a realistic shot at victory. Two of those parties are in Government and the third harbours realistic ambitions of forming one come May next year.

However, there will be no pressure on those parties to say exactly what money is available to regenerate Watford General until the trust comes up with a credible plan. Both Chancellor George Osborne and health secretary Jeremy Hunt were able to bat away questions about hospital funding saying they needed to see what the trust has in mind. Unveiling a clear plan before then would challenge the three parties to set out exactly how much money there will be for the scheme.

The health campus does not just have implications for Watford. The trust is looking at redrawing services across its three sites including St Albans and Hemel Hempstead. New areas marked out on the health campus masterplan show potential for Watford General to expand. And if extra services are due to be based at Watford, then it does not take a huge leap of imagination to figure that St Albans and Hemel could be in line to lose out. Yet a senior member of the trust said this week that even the premise that the main health services will remain in Watford is not “absolutely certain”.

Whatever the case, there are bound to be losers as well as winners in the clinical strategy. And the last thing the trust needs is for the MPs and parliamentary candidates turning its decisions into volatile election issues. Delaying the clinical strategy until after May 2015 would make life politically easier for the trust’s high command. It could also make life more comfortable for politicians running in the General Election. But it is worrying news for people in Watford who have spent a decade waiting for a new hospital. Because on the evidence of this week, they could be waiting a good while longer.

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Comments (30)

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5:01pm Fri 31 Jan 14

TRT says...

And in the meantime, bulldozers roll over the Irish Club.
And in the meantime, bulldozers roll over the Irish Club. TRT
  • Score: 6

5:07pm Fri 31 Jan 14

gusgreen says...

A distant dream? More like a bloody nightmare.
A distant dream? More like a bloody nightmare. gusgreen
  • Score: 5

5:11pm Fri 31 Jan 14

Phil Cox (UKIP) says...

In 2015, the town will have three parties vying for the parliamentary seat, all of which feel they have a realistic shot at victory. Two of those parties are in Government and the third harbours realistic ambitions of forming one come May next year.


Correction.

FOUR parties.
In 2015, the town will have three parties vying for the parliamentary seat, all of which feel they have a realistic shot at victory. Two of those parties are in Government and the third harbours realistic ambitions of forming one come May next year. Correction. FOUR parties. Phil Cox (UKIP)
  • Score: 4

5:15pm Fri 31 Jan 14

Maceo & Fred says...

At last the sorry tale is coming into the public eye. If anyone wishes to takes a look at the plans the extension of the hospital (if it ever happens) is a small part of the overall Health (now housing campus). For those who live in West Watford our population density currently sits at 89% that will rise close to 100% if these homes are built (the average population density in Watford is approx 40%). We can see the sense of a large hospital but not a further 700 homes. and do hope the Hospital Trust receives the central funding required.

No doubt our Mayor will as ever paint a positive spin but she can't keep it going for ever. Although the scheme regeneration is on brownfield land the scheme has always been controversial due to the late decision in 2012 to also include the 115 year old Farm Terrace Allotments due to alleged uncertain viability of the scheme. This viability question has always been challenged and now with the scheme increasing from 600 to 700 homes it seems now it is how many homes and profits can be generated for Kier and Watford Council. What is not also mentioned is that the Council are given financial incentives over a period of years in matched council tax payments so the more homes that are crammed in not only is there the profits from selling the homes but a number of years of ongoing payments to the council from central government.

If anyone is interested in the campaign the allotment holders have been battling with the Council and central government there has been a large amount of information disclosed from Freedom of Information requests that show the facts and not the spin.

https://www.whatdoth
eyknow.com/user/fred
erick_wesley

https://www.whatdoth
eyknow.com/user/mr_m
j_parker
At last the sorry tale is coming into the public eye. If anyone wishes to takes a look at the plans the extension of the hospital (if it ever happens) is a small part of the overall Health (now housing campus). For those who live in West Watford our population density currently sits at 89% that will rise close to 100% if these homes are built (the average population density in Watford is approx 40%). We can see the sense of a large hospital but not a further 700 homes. and do hope the Hospital Trust receives the central funding required. No doubt our Mayor will as ever paint a positive spin but she can't keep it going for ever. Although the scheme regeneration is on brownfield land the scheme has always been controversial due to the late decision in 2012 to also include the 115 year old Farm Terrace Allotments due to alleged uncertain viability of the scheme. This viability question has always been challenged and now with the scheme increasing from 600 to 700 homes it seems now it is how many homes and profits can be generated for Kier and Watford Council. What is not also mentioned is that the Council are given financial incentives over a period of years in matched council tax payments so the more homes that are crammed in not only is there the profits from selling the homes but a number of years of ongoing payments to the council from central government. If anyone is interested in the campaign the allotment holders have been battling with the Council and central government there has been a large amount of information disclosed from Freedom of Information requests that show the facts and not the spin. https://www.whatdoth eyknow.com/user/fred erick_wesley https://www.whatdoth eyknow.com/user/mr_m j_parker Maceo & Fred
  • Score: 8

5:27pm Fri 31 Jan 14

TRT says...

40% of what? Population density isn't expressed as a percentage. It's expressed as persons per square km (or hectare or other unit of area).
I worked it out last year based on the area of the ward and the number of eligible voters, both values available on the internet. I posted the figures in the comments of an article. Unfortunately, I've lost the spreadsheet I used. But it showed Callowland as the most dense ward in Hertfordshire, with Vicarage second by about 250 voters, and that was only by virtue of the fact that Vicarage Ward incorporates a large plot of uninhabited land between the hospital and Riverside Road. Also, as I used eligible voters as the population figure, if the ward has a disproportionate number of unregistered individuals, that would skew the calculations.
40% of what? Population density isn't expressed as a percentage. It's expressed as persons per square km (or hectare or other unit of area). I worked it out last year based on the area of the ward and the number of eligible voters, both values available on the internet. I posted the figures in the comments of an article. Unfortunately, I've lost the spreadsheet I used. But it showed Callowland as the most dense ward in Hertfordshire, with Vicarage second by about 250 voters, and that was only by virtue of the fact that Vicarage Ward incorporates a large plot of uninhabited land between the hospital and Riverside Road. Also, as I used eligible voters as the population figure, if the ward has a disproportionate number of unregistered individuals, that would skew the calculations. TRT
  • Score: 2

5:31pm Fri 31 Jan 14

TRT says...

Found it. 7th August, 2012.

"Can you cite your sources please, Mike?

I have used
http://openlylocal.c
om/ (area) and
http://www.watford.g
ov.uk/ccm/content/pl
anning-and-developme
nt/population-and-st
atistical-informatio
n.en?page=2 (number of registered voters) to calculate the population density of the electoral wards around Watford.

You are quite correct that Vicarage is not the most densely populated ward in the county; at 75.35 persons per hectare, it is second to Callowland at 79.46 persons per hectare.

If you are interested, the table is here, sorted by density:
Callowland 79.46 p/ha
Vicarage 75.35 p/ha
Leggatts 51.99 p/ha
Stanborough 49.33 p/ha
Oxhey 41.93 p/ha
Woodside 40.02 p/ha
Holywell 37.30 p/ha
Nascot 36.49 p/ha
Meriden 34.42 p/ha
Central 34.22 p/ha
Tudor 31.82 p/ha
Park 14.37 p/ha"
Found it. 7th August, 2012. "Can you cite your sources please, Mike? I have used http://openlylocal.c om/ (area) and http://www.watford.g ov.uk/ccm/content/pl anning-and-developme nt/population-and-st atistical-informatio n.en?page=2 (number of registered voters) to calculate the population density of the electoral wards around Watford. You are quite correct that Vicarage is not the most densely populated ward in the county; at 75.35 persons per hectare, it is second to Callowland at 79.46 persons per hectare. If you are interested, the table is here, sorted by density: Callowland 79.46 p/ha Vicarage 75.35 p/ha Leggatts 51.99 p/ha Stanborough 49.33 p/ha Oxhey 41.93 p/ha Woodside 40.02 p/ha Holywell 37.30 p/ha Nascot 36.49 p/ha Meriden 34.42 p/ha Central 34.22 p/ha Tudor 31.82 p/ha Park 14.37 p/ha" TRT
  • Score: 2

5:37pm Fri 31 Jan 14

Karen England says...

I attended the consultation about the so-called Health Campus on 18th January. I stayed for about an hour and a half, and the weight of opinion of the visitors that I heard talking about the main talking point on display- a large map of the site -was definitely negative. The comments posted on the 'comment tree' board were similar - the majority of comments bemoaned the loss of the allotments, the huge over development in terms of houses, and the effect on traffic that would be generated. Yet the Mayor's newsletter this week talks of feedback being overwhelmingly positive. I can't reconcile this with what I saw. I hope the Council officers will be diligent in analysing and reporting the results of the consultation, which they promised would be published on the health campus website. Or is this yet another PR exercise? I would be interested to hear whether anyone else who attended also felt there was a lot of negative comment.
I attended the consultation about the so-called Health Campus on 18th January. I stayed for about an hour and a half, and the weight of opinion of the visitors that I heard talking about the main talking point on display- a large map of the site -was definitely negative. The comments posted on the 'comment tree' board were similar - the majority of comments bemoaned the loss of the allotments, the huge over development in terms of houses, and the effect on traffic that would be generated. Yet the Mayor's newsletter this week talks of feedback being overwhelmingly positive. I can't reconcile this with what I saw. I hope the Council officers will be diligent in analysing and reporting the results of the consultation, which they promised would be published on the health campus website. Or is this yet another PR exercise? I would be interested to hear whether anyone else who attended also felt there was a lot of negative comment. Karen England
  • Score: 9

6:34pm Fri 31 Jan 14

Cuetip says...

gusgreen wrote:
A distant dream? More like a bloody nightmare.
Now here they you go again
They say we need the allotments
For a magnificent campus
It’s only right we build even more homes
With time you wouldn’t remember health
And what you lost
Besides we have further dreams to sell
And keep your visions to yourself
[quote][p][bold]gusgreen[/bold] wrote: A distant dream? More like a bloody nightmare.[/p][/quote]Now here they you go again They say we need the allotments For a magnificent campus It’s only right we build even more homes With time you wouldn’t remember health And what you lost Besides we have further dreams to sell And keep your visions to yourself Cuetip
  • Score: 4

12:08am Sat 1 Feb 14

Andrew1963 says...

TRT wrote:
Found it. 7th August, 2012.

"Can you cite your sources please, Mike?

I have used
http://openlylocal.c

om/ (area) and
http://www.watford.g

ov.uk/ccm/content/pl

anning-and-developme

nt/population-and-st

atistical-informatio

n.en?page=2 (number of registered voters) to calculate the population density of the electoral wards around Watford.

You are quite correct that Vicarage is not the most densely populated ward in the county; at 75.35 persons per hectare, it is second to Callowland at 79.46 persons per hectare.

If you are interested, the table is here, sorted by density:
Callowland 79.46 p/ha
Vicarage 75.35 p/ha
Leggatts 51.99 p/ha
Stanborough 49.33 p/ha
Oxhey 41.93 p/ha
Woodside 40.02 p/ha
Holywell 37.30 p/ha
Nascot 36.49 p/ha
Meriden 34.42 p/ha
Central 34.22 p/ha
Tudor 31.82 p/ha
Park 14.37 p/ha"
The only reason Vicarage is only the second most densely populated ward is because the vicarage road cemetery is officially designated as public open space. The same category as Cassiobury park! The fear must be that the town hall is motivated not by the need to help get a new hospital, but by the prospect of a profitable urban regeneration plan. Hence the health campus is now little more than a housing estate with retail and private health club. The managing director of Watford council is the former chief executive of the London Development Agency. Highly experienced at delivering houses and commercial redevelopment. Once it is fully hemmed in with houses and shops all clogging the new access road required for the AAU atWatford, you can see the Watford General site downgraded and ripe for redevelopment. The health campus far from delivering a new hospital maybe the Trojan horse that leads to its closure.
[quote][p][bold]TRT[/bold] wrote: Found it. 7th August, 2012. "Can you cite your sources please, Mike? I have used http://openlylocal.c om/ (area) and http://www.watford.g ov.uk/ccm/content/pl anning-and-developme nt/population-and-st atistical-informatio n.en?page=2 (number of registered voters) to calculate the population density of the electoral wards around Watford. You are quite correct that Vicarage is not the most densely populated ward in the county; at 75.35 persons per hectare, it is second to Callowland at 79.46 persons per hectare. If you are interested, the table is here, sorted by density: Callowland 79.46 p/ha Vicarage 75.35 p/ha Leggatts 51.99 p/ha Stanborough 49.33 p/ha Oxhey 41.93 p/ha Woodside 40.02 p/ha Holywell 37.30 p/ha Nascot 36.49 p/ha Meriden 34.42 p/ha Central 34.22 p/ha Tudor 31.82 p/ha Park 14.37 p/ha"[/p][/quote]The only reason Vicarage is only the second most densely populated ward is because the vicarage road cemetery is officially designated as public open space. The same category as Cassiobury park! The fear must be that the town hall is motivated not by the need to help get a new hospital, but by the prospect of a profitable urban regeneration plan. Hence the health campus is now little more than a housing estate with retail and private health club. The managing director of Watford council is the former chief executive of the London Development Agency. Highly experienced at delivering houses and commercial redevelopment. Once it is fully hemmed in with houses and shops all clogging the new access road required for the AAU atWatford, you can see the Watford General site downgraded and ripe for redevelopment. The health campus far from delivering a new hospital maybe the Trojan horse that leads to its closure. Andrew1963
  • Score: 1

8:07am Sat 1 Feb 14

dontknowynot says...

Phil Cox (UKIP) wrote:
In 2015, the town will have three parties vying for the parliamentary seat, all of which feel they have a realistic shot at victory. Two of those parties are in Government and the third harbours realistic ambitions of forming one come May next year.


Correction.

FOUR parties.
this is clear fantasy there are only two parties with a chance of victory.
Libdems are set to get two dozen seats and UKIP none how either can be considered as having a chance of victory eludes me.
[quote][p][bold]Phil Cox (UKIP)[/bold] wrote: In 2015, the town will have three parties vying for the parliamentary seat, all of which feel they have a realistic shot at victory. Two of those parties are in Government and the third harbours realistic ambitions of forming one come May next year. Correction. FOUR parties.[/p][/quote]this is clear fantasy there are only two parties with a chance of victory. Libdems are set to get two dozen seats and UKIP none how either can be considered as having a chance of victory eludes me. dontknowynot
  • Score: -2

11:57am Sat 1 Feb 14

zigthedog says...

I attended the last of the consultations and agree with Karen and in fact didn't hear a single voice in favour of the Campus. In the last couple of years they built the new "Acute Admissions Unit" at Watford general, how many know this building has only planning permission for 6 years. Wonder why? What will happen in 2020 when that period of time ends, pull it down and build more houses?
I attended the last of the consultations and agree with Karen and in fact didn't hear a single voice in favour of the Campus. In the last couple of years they built the new "Acute Admissions Unit" at Watford general, how many know this building has only planning permission for 6 years. Wonder why? What will happen in 2020 when that period of time ends, pull it down and build more houses? zigthedog
  • Score: 1

12:57pm Sat 1 Feb 14

TRT says...

Actually Andrew I never thought of that. Perfect timing. Get the area zoned and building underway then the hospital site becomes untennable and you get another plot able to take an 8-10 storey housing block. Hospital services acute are relocated somewhere more sensible in 10-15 yrs, say a prime spot of green belt out towards Apsley or Bricket wood or park lane. Say where mr dump it has left them with a problem near Gradens of the Rose. Yes, now it becomes clear.
Actually Andrew I never thought of that. Perfect timing. Get the area zoned and building underway then the hospital site becomes untennable and you get another plot able to take an 8-10 storey housing block. Hospital services acute are relocated somewhere more sensible in 10-15 yrs, say a prime spot of green belt out towards Apsley or Bricket wood or park lane. Say where mr dump it has left them with a problem near Gradens of the Rose. Yes, now it becomes clear. TRT
  • Score: -1

8:03pm Sat 1 Feb 14

Harry Caine says...

Andrew1963 wrote:
TRT wrote:
Found it. 7th August, 2012.

"Can you cite your sources please, Mike?

I have used
http://openlylocal.c


om/ (area) and
http://www.watford.g


ov.uk/ccm/content/pl


anning-and-developme


nt/population-and-st


atistical-informatio


n.en?page=2 (number of registered voters) to calculate the population density of the electoral wards around Watford.

You are quite correct that Vicarage is not the most densely populated ward in the county; at 75.35 persons per hectare, it is second to Callowland at 79.46 persons per hectare.

If you are interested, the table is here, sorted by density:
Callowland 79.46 p/ha
Vicarage 75.35 p/ha
Leggatts 51.99 p/ha
Stanborough 49.33 p/ha
Oxhey 41.93 p/ha
Woodside 40.02 p/ha
Holywell 37.30 p/ha
Nascot 36.49 p/ha
Meriden 34.42 p/ha
Central 34.22 p/ha
Tudor 31.82 p/ha
Park 14.37 p/ha"
The only reason Vicarage is only the second most densely populated ward is because the vicarage road cemetery is officially designated as public open space. The same category as Cassiobury park! The fear must be that the town hall is motivated not by the need to help get a new hospital, but by the prospect of a profitable urban regeneration plan. Hence the health campus is now little more than a housing estate with retail and private health club. The managing director of Watford council is the former chief executive of the London Development Agency. Highly experienced at delivering houses and commercial redevelopment. Once it is fully hemmed in with houses and shops all clogging the new access road required for the AAU atWatford, you can see the Watford General site downgraded and ripe for redevelopment. The health campus far from delivering a new hospital maybe the Trojan horse that leads to its closure.
All this sounds like heaven compared to blockaded Gaza
Population density:
4657 p/ha
It's akin to shooting fish in a barrel
[quote][p][bold]Andrew1963[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]TRT[/bold] wrote: Found it. 7th August, 2012. "Can you cite your sources please, Mike? I have used http://openlylocal.c om/ (area) and http://www.watford.g ov.uk/ccm/content/pl anning-and-developme nt/population-and-st atistical-informatio n.en?page=2 (number of registered voters) to calculate the population density of the electoral wards around Watford. You are quite correct that Vicarage is not the most densely populated ward in the county; at 75.35 persons per hectare, it is second to Callowland at 79.46 persons per hectare. If you are interested, the table is here, sorted by density: Callowland 79.46 p/ha Vicarage 75.35 p/ha Leggatts 51.99 p/ha Stanborough 49.33 p/ha Oxhey 41.93 p/ha Woodside 40.02 p/ha Holywell 37.30 p/ha Nascot 36.49 p/ha Meriden 34.42 p/ha Central 34.22 p/ha Tudor 31.82 p/ha Park 14.37 p/ha"[/p][/quote]The only reason Vicarage is only the second most densely populated ward is because the vicarage road cemetery is officially designated as public open space. The same category as Cassiobury park! The fear must be that the town hall is motivated not by the need to help get a new hospital, but by the prospect of a profitable urban regeneration plan. Hence the health campus is now little more than a housing estate with retail and private health club. The managing director of Watford council is the former chief executive of the London Development Agency. Highly experienced at delivering houses and commercial redevelopment. Once it is fully hemmed in with houses and shops all clogging the new access road required for the AAU atWatford, you can see the Watford General site downgraded and ripe for redevelopment. The health campus far from delivering a new hospital maybe the Trojan horse that leads to its closure.[/p][/quote]All this sounds like heaven compared to blockaded Gaza Population density: 4657 p/ha It's akin to shooting fish in a barrel Harry Caine
  • Score: -1

10:45pm Sat 1 Feb 14

Su Murray says...

Phil Cox (UKIP) wrote:
In 2015, the town will have three parties vying for the parliamentary seat, all of which feel they have a realistic shot at victory. Two of those parties are in Government and the third harbours realistic ambitions of forming one come May next year.


Correction.

FOUR parties.
Phil,

Watford is a 'bellweather' seat and pretty much always has been. In fact since 1974 Watford has always elected an MP from what turns out to be the 'winning party'. If only we declared earlier, we could all go to bed early knowing what flavour government we were going to wake up to!

Granted, we have to assume at some point that record will be broken. But it's not going to happen at the next General election. Watford simply isn't going to break out in a 'fresh place' and give UKIP there first ever MP.

Of course, if you are referring to the technical number of candidates standing for election, then there will be at least 5 (The Greens) if not 6 (given BNP have stood in previous elections) or even 7 - who knows what plans/funding TUSC have!
[quote][p][bold]Phil Cox (UKIP)[/bold] wrote: In 2015, the town will have three parties vying for the parliamentary seat, all of which feel they have a realistic shot at victory. Two of those parties are in Government and the third harbours realistic ambitions of forming one come May next year. Correction. FOUR parties.[/p][/quote]Phil, Watford is a 'bellweather' seat and pretty much always has been. In fact since 1974 Watford has always elected an MP from what turns out to be the 'winning party'. If only we declared earlier, we could all go to bed early knowing what flavour government we were going to wake up to! Granted, we have to assume at some point that record will be broken. But it's not going to happen at the next General election. Watford simply isn't going to break out in a 'fresh place' and give UKIP there first ever MP. Of course, if you are referring to the technical number of candidates standing for election, then there will be at least 5 (The Greens) if not 6 (given BNP have stood in previous elections) or even 7 - who knows what plans/funding TUSC have! Su Murray
  • Score: -1

11:00pm Sat 1 Feb 14

Su Murray says...

Karen England wrote:
I attended the consultation about the so-called Health Campus on 18th January. I stayed for about an hour and a half, and the weight of opinion of the visitors that I heard talking about the main talking point on display- a large map of the site -was definitely negative. The comments posted on the 'comment tree' board were similar - the majority of comments bemoaned the loss of the allotments, the huge over development in terms of houses, and the effect on traffic that would be generated. Yet the Mayor's newsletter this week talks of feedback being overwhelmingly positive. I can't reconcile this with what I saw. I hope the Council officers will be diligent in analysing and reporting the results of the consultation, which they promised would be published on the health campus website. Or is this yet another PR exercise? I would be interested to hear whether anyone else who attended also felt there was a lot of negative comment.
Karen,

"I hope the Council officers will be diligent in analysing and reporting the results of the consultation, which they promised would be published on the health campus website".

I wouldn't hold your breath.

"Or is this yet another PR exercise"?

In a nutshell - yes.
[quote][p][bold]Karen England[/bold] wrote: I attended the consultation about the so-called Health Campus on 18th January. I stayed for about an hour and a half, and the weight of opinion of the visitors that I heard talking about the main talking point on display- a large map of the site -was definitely negative. The comments posted on the 'comment tree' board were similar - the majority of comments bemoaned the loss of the allotments, the huge over development in terms of houses, and the effect on traffic that would be generated. Yet the Mayor's newsletter this week talks of feedback being overwhelmingly positive. I can't reconcile this with what I saw. I hope the Council officers will be diligent in analysing and reporting the results of the consultation, which they promised would be published on the health campus website. Or is this yet another PR exercise? I would be interested to hear whether anyone else who attended also felt there was a lot of negative comment.[/p][/quote]Karen, "I hope the Council officers will be diligent in analysing and reporting the results of the consultation, which they promised would be published on the health campus website". I wouldn't hold your breath. "Or is this yet another PR exercise"? In a nutshell - yes. Su Murray
  • Score: 0

7:13pm Sun 2 Feb 14

Phil Cox (UKIP) says...

Su Murray wrote:
Phil Cox (UKIP) wrote:
In 2015, the town will have three parties vying for the parliamentary seat, all of which feel they have a realistic shot at victory. Two of those parties are in Government and the third harbours realistic ambitions of forming one come May next year.


Correction.

FOUR parties.
Phil,

Watford is a 'bellweather' seat and pretty much always has been. In fact since 1974 Watford has always elected an MP from what turns out to be the 'winning party'. If only we declared earlier, we could all go to bed early knowing what flavour government we were going to wake up to!

Granted, we have to assume at some point that record will be broken. But it's not going to happen at the next General election. Watford simply isn't going to break out in a 'fresh place' and give UKIP there first ever MP.

Of course, if you are referring to the technical number of candidates standing for election, then there will be at least 5 (The Greens) if not 6 (given BNP have stood in previous elections) or even 7 - who knows what plans/funding TUSC have!
Su,

it's a four-way marginal. Wait and see.

Where have you been?
[quote][p][bold]Su Murray[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Phil Cox (UKIP)[/bold] wrote: In 2015, the town will have three parties vying for the parliamentary seat, all of which feel they have a realistic shot at victory. Two of those parties are in Government and the third harbours realistic ambitions of forming one come May next year. Correction. FOUR parties.[/p][/quote]Phil, Watford is a 'bellweather' seat and pretty much always has been. In fact since 1974 Watford has always elected an MP from what turns out to be the 'winning party'. If only we declared earlier, we could all go to bed early knowing what flavour government we were going to wake up to! Granted, we have to assume at some point that record will be broken. But it's not going to happen at the next General election. Watford simply isn't going to break out in a 'fresh place' and give UKIP there first ever MP. Of course, if you are referring to the technical number of candidates standing for election, then there will be at least 5 (The Greens) if not 6 (given BNP have stood in previous elections) or even 7 - who knows what plans/funding TUSC have![/p][/quote]Su, it's a four-way marginal. Wait and see. Where have you been? Phil Cox (UKIP)
  • Score: 0

8:45pm Sun 2 Feb 14

Su Murray says...

Su,

it's a four-way marginal. Wait and see.

Where have you been?

Evening Phil,

It will certainly be interesting. I wouldn't bet on it being a four way marginal though. Lib dems have lost an awful lot of support at National level. ;-)

|'ve been around but busy over the last few months dealing with various 'domestic disasters'. The WO should commission a 'feel good' piece from me all about it. Every one that read it would feel so happy it wasn't them!
Su, it's a four-way marginal. Wait and see. Where have you been? Evening Phil, It will certainly be interesting. I wouldn't bet on it being a four way marginal though. Lib dems have lost an awful lot of support at National level. ;-) |'ve been around but busy over the last few months dealing with various 'domestic disasters'. The WO should commission a 'feel good' piece from me all about it. Every one that read it would feel so happy it wasn't them! Su Murray
  • Score: 0

12:11am Mon 3 Feb 14

Phil Cox (UKIP) says...

Su Murray wrote:
Su,

it's a four-way marginal. Wait and see.

Where have you been?

Evening Phil,

It will certainly be interesting. I wouldn't bet on it being a four way marginal though. Lib dems have lost an awful lot of support at National level. ;-)

|'ve been around but busy over the last few months dealing with various 'domestic disasters'. The WO should commission a 'feel good' piece from me all about it. Every one that read it would feel so happy it wasn't them!
I like your style Su. I wouldn't vote for your party, but I like your style.

Sorry to hear about your DDs.

Are you standing for election this year?

Not only are the LibDems melting down nationally and now suffering from sex scandals (though not as bad as the Oaten one), they also have to get through the next local elections here in Watford. The national party are considering abandoning seats like Watford to concentrate their resources on the seats they already hold because even holding on to them will be a miracle.

So, if that comes to pass, that leaves UKIP, Labour and the Tories potentially attracting large shares of the vote.
[quote][p][bold]Su Murray[/bold] wrote: Su, it's a four-way marginal. Wait and see. Where have you been? Evening Phil, It will certainly be interesting. I wouldn't bet on it being a four way marginal though. Lib dems have lost an awful lot of support at National level. ;-) |'ve been around but busy over the last few months dealing with various 'domestic disasters'. The WO should commission a 'feel good' piece from me all about it. Every one that read it would feel so happy it wasn't them![/p][/quote]I like your style Su. I wouldn't vote for your party, but I like your style. Sorry to hear about your DDs. Are you standing for election this year? Not only are the LibDems melting down nationally and now suffering from sex scandals (though not as bad as the Oaten one), they also have to get through the next local elections here in Watford. The national party are considering abandoning seats like Watford to concentrate their resources on the seats they already hold because even holding on to them will be a miracle. So, if that comes to pass, that leaves UKIP, Labour and the Tories potentially attracting large shares of the vote. Phil Cox (UKIP)
  • Score: 0

11:13pm Mon 3 Feb 14

Su Murray says...

Thanks Phil.

The DDs are gradually getting sorted and no harm to any of the family so, it's just the way things go sometimes. Mind you, I'm thinking sod a piece in the WO, I could pen a good sit com out of it..........

Obviously, I wouldn't vote for UKIP. Not because I buy the whole 'racist stuff' but because I don't think the one and only policy UKIP has, is necessarily correct. Plus until Farage trashed your national manifesto last week, I disagreed with most of what was in it.

Much as it may surprise you, there is a great deal of similarity between the Greens and UKIP when it comes to individuals and the desire to devolve decisions to a local level. The difference is, The Greens actually have a reasonably democratic set up which controls the leadership, where as Farage dictates national UKIP policy.

As to the Lib dems, again Local politics is very different to National politics. What is happening Nationally won't necessarily affect the Lib dems so badly locally. Though if Watford people really get their heads round the whole 'Housing campus' and what is really going on, plus the way they have been mislead, then that could have an impact.

Often, I think party politics shouldn't be allowed - at least not at a local level. At a National level, it probably is unavoidable.

Will I stand this year? I truly don't know at this point Phil.

When's your next 'stall'? If I'm around it would be interesting to come along and have a chat. Though I can tell you now - you won't 'recruit' me to the cause! ;-)
Thanks Phil. The DDs are gradually getting sorted and no harm to any of the family so, it's just the way things go sometimes. Mind you, I'm thinking sod a piece in the WO, I could pen a good sit com out of it.......... Obviously, I wouldn't vote for UKIP. Not because I buy the whole 'racist stuff' [I don't] but because I don't think the one and only policy UKIP has, is necessarily correct. Plus until Farage trashed your national manifesto last week, I disagreed with most of what was in it. Much as it may surprise you, there is a great deal of similarity between the Greens and UKIP when it comes to individuals and the desire to devolve decisions to a local level. The difference is, The Greens actually have a reasonably democratic set up which controls the leadership, where as Farage dictates national UKIP policy. As to the Lib dems, again Local politics is very different to National politics. What is happening Nationally won't necessarily affect the Lib dems so badly locally. Though if Watford people really get their heads round the whole 'Housing campus' and what is really going on, plus the way they have been mislead, then that could have an impact. Often, I think party politics shouldn't be allowed - at least not at a local level. At a National level, it probably is unavoidable. Will I stand this year? I truly don't know at this point Phil. When's your next 'stall'? If I'm around it would be interesting to come along and have a chat. Though I can tell you now - you won't 'recruit' me to the cause! ;-) Su Murray
  • Score: 0

9:05am Tue 4 Feb 14

Phil Cox (UKIP) says...

Ouch Sue! Ouch!

You've been reading someone else's propaganda if you can come out with phrases like "the one and only policy Ukip has."

Then you go on to say you don't most of the policies from the last UKIP manifesto. ???

Come along to our street stand on the first Saturday of each month, we are outside the One Bell pub (opposite BHS) from 9.15 - 1.

Alternatively, come to our friendly local public meeting on 20th Feb at the Town and Country Club, Rosslyn Rd, 7:30. It's much warmer and there is a bar. We have two speakers talking about UKIP policies or some other local issue. This meeting it is covering education and the Mayoral elections.

I'll make sure there's a membership form available for you - you never know, you might like what you hear!

Look forward to seeing you again Su, all the best.
Ouch Sue! Ouch! You've been reading someone else's propaganda if you can come out with phrases like "the one and only policy Ukip has." Then you go on to say you don't most of the policies from the last UKIP manifesto. ??? Come along to our street stand on the first Saturday of each month, we are outside the One Bell pub (opposite BHS) from 9.15 - 1. Alternatively, come to our friendly local public meeting on 20th Feb at the Town and Country Club, Rosslyn Rd, 7:30. It's much warmer and there is a bar. We have two speakers talking about UKIP policies or some other local issue. This meeting it is covering education and the Mayoral elections. I'll make sure there's a membership form available for you - you never know, you might like what you hear! Look forward to seeing you again Su, all the best. Phil Cox (UKIP)
  • Score: 0

9:24am Tue 4 Feb 14

TRT says...

Of course, they'll have to fix the flooding at Lower High St if they want to use it as an ambulance access road...
Of course, they'll have to fix the flooding at Lower High St if they want to use it as an ambulance access road... TRT
  • Score: 1

10:53pm Tue 4 Feb 14

Lucy60 says...

Isn't it time the proposed development was renamed the 'Vicarage Housing Estate'? -for that is what it will be. The term 'Health Campus' has been a strong marketing trick but is so misleading when maintaining a hospital (that des not have the best track record) let alone expanding or improving it is in such doubt. Smoke and mirrors springs to mind. The marketing team with their sqewed consultations are certainly 'spinning' this one.
Isn't it time the proposed development was renamed the 'Vicarage Housing Estate'? -for that is what it will be. The term 'Health Campus' has been a strong marketing trick but is so misleading when maintaining a hospital (that des not have the best track record) let alone expanding or improving it is in such doubt. Smoke and mirrors springs to mind. The marketing team with their sqewed consultations are certainly 'spinning' this one. Lucy60
  • Score: 1

10:53pm Tue 4 Feb 14

Su Murray says...

Phil Cox (UKIP) wrote:
Ouch Sue! Ouch!

You've been reading someone else's propaganda if you can come out with phrases like "the one and only policy Ukip has."

Then you go on to say you don't most of the policies from the last UKIP manifesto. ???

Come along to our street stand on the first Saturday of each month, we are outside the One Bell pub (opposite BHS) from 9.15 - 1.

Alternatively, come to our friendly local public meeting on 20th Feb at the Town and Country Club, Rosslyn Rd, 7:30. It's much warmer and there is a bar. We have two speakers talking about UKIP policies or some other local issue. This meeting it is covering education and the Mayoral elections.

I'll make sure there's a membership form available for you - you never know, you might like what you hear!

Look forward to seeing you again Su, all the best.
Tsk!

Attention to detail Phil. I said I disagreed with the previous (2010) UKIP manifesto. Following his 'car crash' interview with Andrew Neil about 10 days or so ago, Farage disowned the whole manifesto and said there would be a new one after the Council and Euro elections.

Admittedly, as we've seen from the current government (and others before), manifesto's aren't necessarily all that reliable! Still, I find it astonishing that UKIP are in effect, asking people to vote for them in the Council and Euro elections, without actually setting out what their current policies are - other than leaving the EU obviously.

I'd be more tempted by the promise of a glass of dry white than a membership form. ;-)
[quote][p][bold]Phil Cox (UKIP)[/bold] wrote: Ouch Sue! Ouch! You've been reading someone else's propaganda if you can come out with phrases like "the one and only policy Ukip has." Then you go on to say you don't most of the policies from the last UKIP manifesto. ??? Come along to our street stand on the first Saturday of each month, we are outside the One Bell pub (opposite BHS) from 9.15 - 1. Alternatively, come to our friendly local public meeting on 20th Feb at the Town and Country Club, Rosslyn Rd, 7:30. It's much warmer and there is a bar. We have two speakers talking about UKIP policies or some other local issue. This meeting it is covering education and the Mayoral elections. I'll make sure there's a membership form available for you - you never know, you might like what you hear! Look forward to seeing you again Su, all the best.[/p][/quote]Tsk! Attention to detail Phil. I said I disagreed with the previous (2010) UKIP manifesto. Following his 'car crash' interview with Andrew Neil about 10 days or so ago, Farage disowned the whole manifesto and said there would be a new one after the Council and Euro elections. Admittedly, as we've seen from the current government (and others before), manifesto's aren't necessarily all that reliable! Still, I find it astonishing that UKIP are in effect, asking people to vote for them in the Council and Euro elections, without actually setting out what their current policies are - other than leaving the EU obviously. I'd be more tempted by the promise of a glass of dry white than a membership form. ;-) Su Murray
  • Score: 0

11:01pm Tue 4 Feb 14

Su Murray says...

TRT wrote:
Of course, they'll have to fix the flooding at Lower High St if they want to use it as an ambulance access road...
Did you go along to any of the consultations TRT? No one seemed able to answer how the proposed solutions to building on the flood plain, will impact/affect flooding elsewhere. Nor for that matter how the road would impact on congestion elsewhere.
[quote][p][bold]TRT[/bold] wrote: Of course, they'll have to fix the flooding at Lower High St if they want to use it as an ambulance access road...[/p][/quote]Did you go along to any of the consultations TRT? No one seemed able to answer how the proposed solutions to building on the flood plain, will impact/affect flooding elsewhere. Nor for that matter how the road would impact on congestion elsewhere. Su Murray
  • Score: 0

11:09pm Tue 4 Feb 14

Su Murray says...

Lucy60 wrote:
Isn't it time the proposed development was renamed the 'Vicarage Housing Estate'? -for that is what it will be. The term 'Health Campus' has been a strong marketing trick but is so misleading when maintaining a hospital (that des not have the best track record) let alone expanding or improving it is in such doubt. Smoke and mirrors springs to mind. The marketing team with their sqewed consultations are certainly 'spinning' this one.
Tut Tut Lucy!

I was assured by a Keir representative that it is in fact a Housing and Commercial estate. Doesn't matter to them either way whether the hospital plans go ahead. Nor for that matter, do they care that much whether the allotments are included or not!

You're correct - smoke and mirrors all along. And spin.
[quote][p][bold]Lucy60[/bold] wrote: Isn't it time the proposed development was renamed the 'Vicarage Housing Estate'? -for that is what it will be. The term 'Health Campus' has been a strong marketing trick but is so misleading when maintaining a hospital (that des not have the best track record) let alone expanding or improving it is in such doubt. Smoke and mirrors springs to mind. The marketing team with their sqewed consultations are certainly 'spinning' this one.[/p][/quote]Tut Tut Lucy! I was assured by a Keir representative that it is in fact a Housing and Commercial estate. Doesn't matter to them either way whether the hospital plans go ahead. Nor for that matter, do they care that much whether the allotments are included or not! You're correct - smoke and mirrors all along. And spin. Su Murray
  • Score: 1

11:23pm Tue 4 Feb 14

TRT says...

Su Murray wrote:
TRT wrote:
Of course, they'll have to fix the flooding at Lower High St if they want to use it as an ambulance access road...
Did you go along to any of the consultations TRT? No one seemed able to answer how the proposed solutions to building on the flood plain, will impact/affect flooding elsewhere. Nor for that matter how the road would impact on congestion elsewhere.
The consultations were ridiculously timed. There was no way I could make any of their three sessions as was at work. I responded online.
[quote][p][bold]Su Murray[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]TRT[/bold] wrote: Of course, they'll have to fix the flooding at Lower High St if they want to use it as an ambulance access road...[/p][/quote]Did you go along to any of the consultations TRT? No one seemed able to answer how the proposed solutions to building on the flood plain, will impact/affect flooding elsewhere. Nor for that matter how the road would impact on congestion elsewhere.[/p][/quote]The consultations were ridiculously timed. There was no way I could make any of their three sessions as was at work. I responded online. TRT
  • Score: 1

11:46pm Tue 4 Feb 14

Su Murray says...

TRT wrote:
Su Murray wrote:
TRT wrote:
Of course, they'll have to fix the flooding at Lower High St if they want to use it as an ambulance access road...
Did you go along to any of the consultations TRT? No one seemed able to answer how the proposed solutions to building on the flood plain, will impact/affect flooding elsewhere. Nor for that matter how the road would impact on congestion elsewhere.
The consultations were ridiculously timed. There was no way I could make any of their three sessions as was at work. I responded online.
As Lucy said, the consultations were skewed. Did you find the online response reasonable?
[quote][p][bold]TRT[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Su Murray[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]TRT[/bold] wrote: Of course, they'll have to fix the flooding at Lower High St if they want to use it as an ambulance access road...[/p][/quote]Did you go along to any of the consultations TRT? No one seemed able to answer how the proposed solutions to building on the flood plain, will impact/affect flooding elsewhere. Nor for that matter how the road would impact on congestion elsewhere.[/p][/quote]The consultations were ridiculously timed. There was no way I could make any of their three sessions as was at work. I responded online.[/p][/quote]As Lucy said, the consultations were skewed. Did you find the online response reasonable? Su Murray
  • Score: 0

12:13am Wed 5 Feb 14

TRT says...

Su Murray wrote:
TRT wrote:
Su Murray wrote:
TRT wrote:
Of course, they'll have to fix the flooding at Lower High St if they want to use it as an ambulance access road...
Did you go along to any of the consultations TRT? No one seemed able to answer how the proposed solutions to building on the flood plain, will impact/affect flooding elsewhere. Nor for that matter how the road would impact on congestion elsewhere.
The consultations were ridiculously timed. There was no way I could make any of their three sessions as was at work. I responded online.
As Lucy said, the consultations were skewed. Did you find the online response reasonable?
No. The consultation form was designed to give a skewed response, talking about the "health campus" as a done deal. The major contention points just didn't appear. I'm trying to find words to describe just how poor the questionnaire was. The information boards were lacking in detail. The whole presentation is a far cry from the much more detailed 2007 scheme which included elevation plans, survey reports, space utilisation calculations etc etc.
[quote][p][bold]Su Murray[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]TRT[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Su Murray[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]TRT[/bold] wrote: Of course, they'll have to fix the flooding at Lower High St if they want to use it as an ambulance access road...[/p][/quote]Did you go along to any of the consultations TRT? No one seemed able to answer how the proposed solutions to building on the flood plain, will impact/affect flooding elsewhere. Nor for that matter how the road would impact on congestion elsewhere.[/p][/quote]The consultations were ridiculously timed. There was no way I could make any of their three sessions as was at work. I responded online.[/p][/quote]As Lucy said, the consultations were skewed. Did you find the online response reasonable?[/p][/quote]No. The consultation form was designed to give a skewed response, talking about the "health campus" as a done deal. The major contention points just didn't appear. I'm trying to find words to describe just how poor the questionnaire was. The information boards were lacking in detail. The whole presentation is a far cry from the much more detailed 2007 scheme which included elevation plans, survey reports, space utilisation calculations etc etc. TRT
  • Score: 0

8:13am Wed 5 Feb 14

Phil Cox - UKIP Mayoral candidate for Watford says...

Su Murray wrote:
Phil Cox (UKIP) wrote:
Ouch Sue! Ouch!

You've been reading someone else's propaganda if you can come out with phrases like "the one and only policy Ukip has."

Then you go on to say you don't most of the policies from the last UKIP manifesto. ???

Come along to our street stand on the first Saturday of each month, we are outside the One Bell pub (opposite BHS) from 9.15 - 1.

Alternatively, come to our friendly local public meeting on 20th Feb at the Town and Country Club, Rosslyn Rd, 7:30. It's much warmer and there is a bar. We have two speakers talking about UKIP policies or some other local issue. This meeting it is covering education and the Mayoral elections.

I'll make sure there's a membership form available for you - you never know, you might like what you hear!

Look forward to seeing you again Su, all the best.
Tsk!

Attention to detail Phil. I said I disagreed with the previous (2010) UKIP manifesto. Following his 'car crash' interview with Andrew Neil about 10 days or so ago, Farage disowned the whole manifesto and said there would be a new one after the Council and Euro elections.

Admittedly, as we've seen from the current government (and others before), manifesto's aren't necessarily all that reliable! Still, I find it astonishing that UKIP are in effect, asking people to vote for them in the Council and Euro elections, without actually setting out what their current policies are - other than leaving the EU obviously.

I'd be more tempted by the promise of a glass of dry white than a membership form. ;-)
Sue,

UKIP nationally may have their policies under development, the same as other mainstream parties at this stage of the electoral cycle, but we in UKIP Watford have a set of policies that we have just disclosed to the W.O. and will be publishing in more detail on our website on Friday.

Good policies Su. Nothing ungreen in them, but no windmills or tax increases for windmills either.

Have a look. You might want both a glass of wine and a membership form!
[quote][p][bold]Su Murray[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Phil Cox (UKIP)[/bold] wrote: Ouch Sue! Ouch! You've been reading someone else's propaganda if you can come out with phrases like "the one and only policy Ukip has." Then you go on to say you don't most of the policies from the last UKIP manifesto. ??? Come along to our street stand on the first Saturday of each month, we are outside the One Bell pub (opposite BHS) from 9.15 - 1. Alternatively, come to our friendly local public meeting on 20th Feb at the Town and Country Club, Rosslyn Rd, 7:30. It's much warmer and there is a bar. We have two speakers talking about UKIP policies or some other local issue. This meeting it is covering education and the Mayoral elections. I'll make sure there's a membership form available for you - you never know, you might like what you hear! Look forward to seeing you again Su, all the best.[/p][/quote]Tsk! Attention to detail Phil. I said I disagreed with the previous (2010) UKIP manifesto. Following his 'car crash' interview with Andrew Neil about 10 days or so ago, Farage disowned the whole manifesto and said there would be a new one after the Council and Euro elections. Admittedly, as we've seen from the current government (and others before), manifesto's aren't necessarily all that reliable! Still, I find it astonishing that UKIP are in effect, asking people to vote for them in the Council and Euro elections, without actually setting out what their current policies are - other than leaving the EU obviously. I'd be more tempted by the promise of a glass of dry white than a membership form. ;-)[/p][/quote]Sue, UKIP nationally may have their policies under development, the same as other mainstream parties at this stage of the electoral cycle, but we in UKIP Watford have a set of policies that we have just disclosed to the W.O. and will be publishing in more detail on our website on Friday. Good policies Su. Nothing ungreen in them, but no windmills or tax increases for windmills either. Have a look. You might want both a glass of wine and a membership form! Phil Cox - UKIP Mayoral candidate for Watford
  • Score: 0

8:34am Wed 5 Feb 14

Phil Cox - UKIP Mayoral candidate for Watford says...

With no windmill taxes, you might also be able to afford both of them!
With no windmill taxes, you might also be able to afford both of them! Phil Cox - UKIP Mayoral candidate for Watford
  • Score: 0

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