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Martin Kirby Column; Ups and Downs, Policing Bikes and Doctor No

By Kirbso  |  Posted: April 20, 2014

  • Who's the Doctor? I'm not keen to be treated online.

Comments (1)

No doubt there's a perfectly simple explanation and it's just me being a senile old duffer, but I'm very confused by the new 'rise and fall' bollards being installed in Eastgate Street. Unless I've missed something, there's no logic in siting them where they are. As far as I can tell, the main objective is to stop traffic driving through the 'Gate Streets' during the day, when the area is supposed to be a pedestrian zone. Deliveries by vans and trucks are not allowed between 10am and 5pm but we all know that no matter what the time of day, you have to dodge 'white van man', Mr or Mrs 'the rules are for somebody else' and even the occasional police car that is not on a 'shout' but more likely on its way back to Bearland for the occupants' tea break.The bollards are currently being installed outside the Argos store, while other bollards will be installed in Northgate Street, Westgate Street and Southgate Street in the next fortnight. We're told that "The daytime automated bollards in the Gate streets are being put in to make the shopping streets safer between the hours of 10am and 4pm". I'm all for that, but looking at where the bollards are currently sited in Eastgate Street, isn't that going to make turning right from Eastgate Street into Clarence Street a bit difficult during those times? Even though they'll probably have a 'bollard button' in the cab, it's going to slow down buses such as the numbers 9, 7, 3 and 1. I would have expected the bollards to be sited at the junction between the Co-op and Boot's, to protect the pedestrianised section of Eastgate Street without any inconvenience to other traffic. But still, maybe I've got it wrong and these bollards will only operate at weekends and another set will be installed by Boot's. As I said, it hasn't been made clear and I'm easily confused.
The Kirby chucklebutton was pushed last week when I had a casual look at the Twitter page of Barton Street Police. At the time, there was a 'tweet' that solemnly informed the public; "Operation Throttle day of action is underway . . . Anti-social moped riders watch out, we're coming to find you!"Before very long, there was another message that said; "Motorbike stopped in Dinglewell, Hucclecote. All checked out ok and no issues with his driving".Not exactly 'Get yer trahsers on – you're nicked' is it?
I don't mean to keep harping on about advancing age but let's be fair – I'm so old I can remember when Top Gear was a TV programme about cars!Anyway, the grumpy old fart in me is very unsure about people reaching for an iPad and asking for an online diagnosis when they don't feel well.Apparently, Prime Minister David Cameron (or the John Major tribute act, as I prefer to call him), has said we should soon be able to see our GPs on evenings and at weekends, book appointments online and receive electronic prescriptions.Sorry, but the thought of my grandchildren having to rely on speaking to their family doctor on the phone, or via email or even Skype, is worrying to say the least. Seeing a doctor when you feel ill is one of the last things that should be taken over by a computer – if ever. We've only just been warned about a new computer bug that can steal passwords and so on – how long will it be before hackers can get into your medical files or we even have perverts pretending to be online doctors and getting their dubious pleasure from behind a webcam? Or in extreme cases, possibly handing out fatal advice? I'd rather wait for an appointment.

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  • toadhall99  |  April 28 2014, 7:56AM

    I would not like to ride over one of those with a motorcycle