Age of insecurity: here’s to goodwill

Posted on 07th December 2017 | in Blogs , Community , Harry McQuillen: Age of insecurity

It is always a good time to look for the positives in life. We can find them around us and farther afield.

Let’s start with our NHS, the most cherished of all our public services. At the risk of repeating myself, I’m happy to reiterate the fact that there was no NHS when I was young. Recently I had two appointments for eye treatment. One at Cramlington, Manor Walks for an injection for macular degeneration, and one at the RVI for cataract surgery, for the same eye. I needed a very early rise for 7.00am transport to Newcastle, but it’s all free. A friend is in Coquet Ward, Alnwick, following hip surgery and another friend is going for surgery on a minor skin condition.

Care in the community has been discussed at length in recent times. There is always a place for care organised by the authorities, but we all know that there are many people who help others because they want to help them. A very recent idea involves paying householders to provide a bed and breakfast service for people who can be discharged from hospital before they are ready to cope at home. I’m not sure how well this will work, but the idea could have legs.

Locally, we see new businesses, lots of visitors and enthusiasm for a lot of things going on in Amble. We can see the work of the amazing bunch of stalwarts who have served us so well over the years. They’ve never let us down yet and we all love the celebrations that herald the turning on of the lights, Perhaps our new housing developments could help to solve accommodation problems for local people, young and more mature. A good proportion of affordable housing, with the funding required, would help to make things better for many people.

I see communications as a bit of a mixed bag. When I send an email, a very limited skill in my case, it’s brief, factual, with a few typos. We all hear comments from visitors that they like Amble because people are willing to talk. Apparently there was a lot of digital communication pre Brexit. A recent survey produced an interesting conclusion. People who left school before the age of 16 voted two to one in favour of leave, whereas those who stayed in full time education longer voted remain in the same proportion. It’s so easy to make snap judgements on issues like this. We all know that the level of education of any of us depends on a lot more than what happened at school, or how long we stayed there.

Not long until Christmas. Our weather has been fairly temperate so far, although some of Mother Nature’s omens seem to indicate cold weather ahead.

We know there are problems all over the world and that our news media never fails to emphasise them. I keep my fingers crossed, hoping for the best for us and everybody else.

Here’s to GOODWILL!

Harry McQuillen

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