The European Parliament voted to burden every blog like this with an obligation to anticipate any possible copyright breach, even to the point of using the title of a title elsewhere. To my mind politicians do not understand the Internet and instinctively do the wrong thing.

This is what the EFF has to say:

Despite waves of calls and emails from European Internet users, the European Parliament today voted to accept the principle of a universal pre-emptive copyright filter for content-sharing sites, as well as the idea that news publishers should have the right to sue others for quoting news items online or even using their titles as links to articles. Out of all of the potential amendments offered that would fix or ameliorate the damage caused by these proposals, they voted for worst on offer.

Full article here.

The Saga Continues

The next meeting of the Planning Control Committee is due to meet on Thursday 20th Sept to review the reasons for refusal of the applicationto redevelop the station pub (ref. 17/01622/1).

The general idea is to simplify the reasons for refusal to avoid the appeal being decided by a public enquiry, a very expensive process for NHDC and for everyone else.
This is the link to the meeting agenda item.

The key document is the officers’s report, which recommends that:

  • Reason 1 (loss of pub) is retained, but related to the new version of the NPPF that is now in force, but a dependence on policy ETC7 (change of use of shops etc.) is dropped,

  • Reason 2 (cramped layout) is retained,

  • Reason 3 (inadequate parking) is dropped, on the grounds that Herts Highways had no objection the original application,

  • Reason 4 (noise and odour impacts) is dropped on the grounds that this can be mitigated in practice,

  • Reason 5 (lack of completed S106 Obligation) is dropped on the grounds that it is likely one will be in place by the time the appeal takes place,

where Reason 1 etc. are the reasons originally given by the Planning Control Committee in its decision on 19th April 2018.

There is a discussion about this on the SOS Pub Facebook Group.

Prompted by this tweet, I concluded that I believe the following:

  • what hurts me but doesn’t kill me often makes me wiser, or at least less likely to be hurt in future,
  • my emotional reaction to a policy, derived from thinking about how it will affect me, or an individual I know (or hate) is a bad way of evaluating it,
  • the idea that there are good people and bad people, or good tribes and bad tribes, is much less true than that people do things because they face incentives to do good or bad things.

Hello There!

Sorry I haven’t been posting much. I don’t go to NHDC meetings any longer - yay! - and it’s been the holiday season. The Parish Council continues, and we are in danger of going up to full strength, which is no mean feat. Graveley is struggling to be quorate, which has required NHDC to step in. Members of the PC regularly discover they have better things to do with their time, so if you fancy serving the community in this capacity, it’s always worth dropping a note to the Clerk to say that your’e interested.

The Station Pub is a big issue. The appeal has been submitted and the SOS Pub group are busily raising money and instructing experts to back up NHDC in its decision to reject the original application. Their Facebook Group has the latest twists in that saga which, unfortunately, might run and run.

The two NHDC members for Knebworth seem both very active on social media, particularly in the area of reporting of missed bins. It has to be said that NHDC did not exactly cover itself in glory over letting this new contract, especially as East Herts, which has the same contractor and a very similar service with the exception that it has universal brown bin collection, is experienced no difficulties, as far as I am aware.

Best Regards,

Steve. 07712176618.

me on Twitter

We’ve had to wait a long time for The Lytton Arms to re-open, but on Thursday the 17th May the day we’ve all been waiting for arrived. The Lytton Arms was once again open for business.

The pub has been upgraded in many ways, some visible, some less so:

  • the kitchen has been totally refurbished and is now state of the art,
  • the cellar has been re-fitted and can accommodate nine cask ales and a cask cider,
  • the old conservatory with the fly-catching nets has gone, and in its place is a modern, warm replacement,
  • the outside area (where the beer festival casks were set up) is now opened out right through to the boundary with the fields. This is a huge improvement on the old garden, and is perfect for this time of year,
  • every square centimetre of paintwork has been renewed, and the colour scheme modernised,
  • the roof and structural features of the building have all been fixed!

There are probably more improvements, but the main thing for me is that the pub now has plenty of beer, quick food service, a 50% discount on food until the end of the month (search for the code, but you’ll probably get it anyway if you ask), and a marvellous buzz of local residents enjoying a quiet drink in comfortable surroundings.

Jason has now taken over the running of the pub, with a very able team, which includes Stef, who will be familiar to all the regulars from the late James Price’s time running The Lytton. The pub is now part of Anglian Country Inns, a highly professional operation run by Cliff Nye, brother of Steve Nye, former landlord at the pub.

Current beers include Fat Sprat by Adnams, Koha by Mad Squirrel, Happy People by Shiny People, Nelson’s Revenge by Woodfords, Hawse Buckler by Oakham, Bring Me Sunshine by Tring, Lucky Lobster by Brancaster (part of AC Inns), Tiki Blonde by Mad Squirrel, Squid Ink by XT, Take 5 by Harpoon and Affligem by De Smelt as well as Rapple, a Raspberry cider by Apple Cottage. However, even as I type this some of these brews will have been replace. It’s very unlikely you’ll visit and not find anything interesting to drink.

The Lytton now has its own social media presence: on Instagram, on Facebook and on Twitter. Start hitting those ‘Follow’ buttons now for the latest offers!