Saturday 22 March 2014

Waterway Asset or a Liability!

Is Vince Moran a waterway asset or a liability? Your answers to this question please written on the back of a £25 cheque addressed to CaRT - (Cycling Angling Rambling Truss)

The public have a perception of charity and the public will always want to support the welfare of people flooded and forced out of their homes. The public will do this long before donating in support of the infrastructure of canals. Some people will see the CaRT 'National Emergency Appeal' for funding as muscling in on other much more worthwhile appeals at this time. Appeals such as 38 Degrees that are trying to raise donations for direct emergency relief for those stricken people who have been flooded out of their homes.

I would have thought with over 2000 miles of canal and rivers to maintain. CaRT like the Environment Agency, various Local Authorities in England and the various Internal Drainage Boards would have a 'Grant in Aid' agreement in place with the Government for averting flooding disasters. Otherwise, CaRT should identify the costs and apportion those costs to the local authorities where the issues are located. If such a Grant in Aid agreement does not exist, between CaRT and the government via DEFRA the next question should be - why not?

I'm worried that this is another predictable knee jerk reaction by CaRT to flooding and the dire message that has been prematurely sent out. It seems that those in the know operating boating businesses (Boating Trade Condemns Appeal) think that the begging letter might have done more damage to the inland waterways that the effects of flooding. 

"Maybe it's poetic justice – the way that the country that began the industrial revolution has found itself so unprepared against the climate change it has ushered in. But one can't help thinking, nonetheless, that Brunel must be turning in his grave. Half a century – at least – of failure to invest in a resilient national infrastructure has brought us to this."
Deborah Orr writing in the Guardian. 

Most of the time CaRT seems just to want to ignore those 'irritating' boaters. However, when anything like a calamity occurs. Just like a friendly but persistent dog, one that's always wanting to hump your leg. Out come the saturation (pun) mailing lists to bombard those irritating boaters for even more of their money. The cunning Baldrick plan put in place by directors and then orchestrated by the various members of CaRT staff. A snow storm of emails from 'Director', 'Corporate Relationships Manager', 'Individual Giving Manager' or 'Boating Communications Manager'. I think I just need a 'Trustee' and a 'CEO' to have the full set!

Once more this calls into question the public relations skill set of the trust. It seems that for the gaff prone - every opportunity is now and forever more, going to be seized upon, to turn up holding the friendly but persistent doggies begging bowl. Can someone introduce Vince Moran to Prince Philip, it seems to me that they have a wealth of experience to share.

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