This letter was published in both Crawley papers.
‘Four legs good, two legs bad!’. So chanted the animals as they overthrew the farmer to create ‘Animal Farm’ in Orwell’s justly famous book.
‘Private ownership good, public ownership bad’ is seemingly the mantra of our times.
The private sector is often held up as the exemplar of virtue (railways, health, education, the media, power supplies, cleaning services etc) from which the public sector has much to learn – or else be taken over by.
Last Tuesday (March 9th) I walked from home to Ifield Station to catch a train to London. The Crawley Borough Council in-house grass-cutting crews were out for the first time. Apart from the pleasant fragrance of freshly-cut grass, the streetscene of Ifield was visually transformed - although a grass verge could not be cut as a large van was parked across it! The new Labour-controlled borough council has taken steps to ensure that in 2015 the standard of grass cutting in Crawley will be an improvement upon previous years.
Arriving in good time at the station, the journey to (and from) London on the privatised railway system was a catalogue of delay, overcrowding, discomfort and misinformation. It took two hours to get into central London - including a chilly forty minute wait on the platform at Ifield.
Perhaps those providing privatised services to ‘customers’ sometimes have something to learn from our remaining public services.
Labour borough councillor for Northgate ward.