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St. Luke's Book Shop has existed in Hyde Park Road for over 2 years now. It has provided invaluable support and encouragement to the education of children not only in Hyde Park Junior and Infant Schools across the road, but in secondary schools around the city.
With extremely good value products, this shop has enabled families from a wide range of incomes to share in the delight of books.
In August 2003, Gari Bimha arrived in the UK following his Wife and children. Forcibly conscripted into the Zimbabwean (Rhodesian) National Army in 1979 he served the compulsory term, resigning in 1988. He then trained as a minister before rejoining the Army, hoping to do some good in his position as an Army Chaplain.
He was granted a UK student visa in 2003 (2 yrs) to study at Bristol, this was renewed for an internship and he then gained a 1 year visa as an assistant minister. Further visa applications were denied. In 2009, leave to remain / asylum was denied. Rights of appeal were not granted. Further appeals have all been dismissed.
Gari took annual leave to travel to the UK in order to escape atrocities and corruption in Zimbabwe. It was his moral conclusion that he could not serve his country under President Mugabe. His status in the Zimbabwean Army is 'Deserter', the punishment for which is typically torture and execution. Gary fled his occupation and country rather than resign knowing the likely outcome of trying to gain Army clearance.
HM Government believe the situation in Zimbabwe does not pose a threat to Gary and his family!
The reality is that he faces torture and execution if forced to return.
Gary, his Wife Bridget and children participate wholeheartedly in the life of Plymouth and of their community. They have completed and passed the "life in the UK" assessment.
He and his family, are now at risk of removal back to Zimbabwe.
We believe that this decision is against all sense of humanity and natural justice, and are calling on the Home Office to use their powers of discretion and allow Gari and his family to stay.
The high water bills in the South West, compared to the rest of the UK, has been one of the biggest issues in the region for the last 20 years. It is something many in Devon and Cornwall have been campaigning on all our careers. We are now within touching distance of solving this injustice.
The problem stems back to the privatisation of the water industry over two decades ago. Unlike the other utilities, water was split into regional monopolies so customers have not benefited from any price competition. Other factors created high prices; South West Water gained responsibility for the upkeep of almost a third of Britain’s coastline; it has to sustain this with only three percent of the country’s population. You then have to add the problem that the water infrastructure in the South West was far less advanced than other regions; requiring South West Water to raise even more over the years to bring the region up to standard.
Despite the obvious unfairness, the issue was not tackled by Government for a number of years. After a long campaign, we finally gained in 2008 the commission of an independent report to look into this, it published its conclusions in 2009 and finally in this year’s Budget, the Government announced its intention to resolve the problem.
The proposal is to provide £40million every year to reduce the average bill by £50 a year. All that needs to happen for the Government to adopt this proposal fully is to pass through the consultation process, which is currently underway. From there new legislation can be introduced to finalise the change. The more people who respond to the consultation, the more likely it is that the plans will be introduced.
The full consultation is here: http://www.defra.gov.uk/consult/2011/04/05/water-affordability-1104/
Over the past decade, pressure from a small group of people has led to ever more onerous restrictions on the use of Plymouth's Long Beach.
Every year access to the beach has been reduced in both number of vehicles allowed and length of time the drive-on beach is open during the year all without any true representation of or input from the majority of Plymouth residents.
We have complied with every restriction, and the fact that the "threatened" bird population has increased each year shows that our responsible adherence to the current management plan is working. Despite this success, pressure is still being put on agencies to further restrict access.
We submit that the current management plan works as it stands, and the residents of Plymouth and their children should be able to continue to enjoy Long Beach.
THE chief executive of Plymouth City Council has no plans to take a voluntary pay cut.
Barry Keel, yesterday defended his pay of more than £167,000 after his counterpart on Devon County Council agreed to a five per cent cut.
Dr Phil Norrey, the chief executive of Devon County Council, will take a pay cut from £157,000 a year to £149,000. This will bring him below the "fat cat threshold" of £150,000 set by Gordon Brown, the Prime Minister. Mr Brown said last December that "public sector bodies found to be squandering public funds on over-generous salaries for officials, at the expense of services for people, will be named and shamed". The "culture of excess" was defined as public sector pay of more than £150,000 and bonuses over £50,000.