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Don't Look Down

I took my daughter Charlotte over to Le Touquet for the first time yesterday. I had promised her a visit to the aquapark on the sea front but hadn’t expected it to be as busy as it was. Of course the French children are already on their summer holidays and most of them appeared to be queuing for the water slides, absolute bedlam but she enjoyed it and slept all the way home to Kent, missing the view on the way.



In fact, I had considered cancelling the flight in the morning, as Le Touquet were giving four thousand metres and special VFR in mist but hearing one of my past instructors on the radio, mid channel, I asked him what it was like there and he suggested that we could duck under the poor visibility at low-level from Boulogne, which we did, only really seeing the runway once we were joining downwind.



The day eventually cleared into what summer should really be and I wonder how long it will last. Apparently, the jet stream has moved south this year and as a consequence we are collecting all the arctic low fronts, which normally stay away from Europe in summer.

Friday, I went to visit Unisys in Uxbridge and hadn’t realised that Denham airfield was so close, a short taxi ride from the centre of the town. Forty minutes into Denham was much easier than two hours or more by car and of course, the view of the city is rather better from an aircraft which also manages to avoid the congestion charge.

My local council, Thanet, I see has been slated as one of the worst in the country in the comparative league tables rom the Audit Commission. To be honest, I’m hardly surprised; it’s always been the case down here, pretty as the area is. Matters are made worse by poor services and the insistence on the part of the poorer London boroughs that they ‘Dump’ their unwanted problems on Thanet’s doorstep, with the consequence of a rather nasty stabbing incident this week in Cliftonville. The residents are rightly complaining that too many children’s homes, homeless hostels and refugees, crammed into a square mile is a recipe for disaster and disorder and one only has to read the local paper any week to see the unhappy results. With so many young foreign students being mugged by feral gangs in the Margate and Ramsgate area, I’m surprised that any European or Russian parent in their right minds would send their children to learn English in those two areas. I certainly wouldn’t.

Anyway, one of Thanet Council's major failures or excuses appears to be its IT, so next week, I’ll call the head of the council and ask if I can be of help. I couldn’t make matters any worse than they are by all accounts!

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