Tuesday 21 September 2010


I am sure that no-one will have forgotten the flowerpot slalom which had become an integral feature of the cycle bypass at the blackhorse road junction. Well, I reported it and got this lovely response back a couple of weeks ago.
Dear Grumpy Cyclist*,

Thank you for your email dated 11/09/10

I have forwarded your report to the grounds maintenance department responsible under reference number 1588541,they will investigate this and deal with asap.
Please contact us at Waltham Forest Direct if there is anything further we can do to help you.
Yours sincerely etc.

* They didn't actually use the prefix grumpy cyclist. That would just be odd.

Now this looks promising. They will investigate and deal with asap. Now, I am not too sure what degree of investigation is required to realise a flowerpot is in the way and move it, but nevermind, the whole email sounds almost enthusiastic to resolve my minor issue.

Now I went past the offending flowerpot today, and guess what? It was in exactly the same place as it was when I reported it a couple of weeks ago. Clearly Waltham Forest Council's definition of ASAP is significantly different to mine.

Now this isn't a really big thing. It is more an inconvenience and a bit stupid. I doubt anyone would die from have to weave around the flowers, unless they had some kind of ultra-aggressive strain of hay-fever. But the fact is that a 5 minute job has simply been ignored.  I suspect that somewhere there is a job-ticket for this lodged in a council (or more likely Kier) van and is awaiting the time when someone can be bothered to get off their arse to check it out (or the end of space-time, whichever comes sooner).

It shows the real priority that Waltham Forest give cyclists. Which would be so close to zero as to make no practical difference to not 
giving a toss at all.

I do sometimes speculate whether I could adopt such a laissez-faire attitude to paying my council tax. Something tells me they may be just a bit more pro-active with this though.

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