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Tony Allen


Mon 2 Dec 2019

By Tony Allen

The Town Council may recently have declared a Bovey Tracey and Heathfield Climate Emergency, but where do you really start to be able to make a significant difference? Already we have seen and are seeing community litter picks, and the activities of the Plastic Free Bovey group, which is encouraging firms, voluntary bodies and individuals to reduce their use of single-use plastics, and this has had some early successes. Likewise, with the setting up of the Bovey Family Storehouse project which encourages the re-use of clothes, toys and other items that children grow out of so quickly (this is now located at the football pavilion in the Recreation Ground) rather than throwing away and buying new. Consideration is also being given to setting up a Repair Café if suitable premises can be found.

As far as the council is concerned, the plan is to make the new community building better than carbon neutral. Installation of an Air Source Heat Pump rather than a gas-powered boiler is being assessed as are solar panels on the roof after build completion. You may have already noticed that wildflower verges are being planted in four spots in the parish: two along The Le Molay-Littry Way from Bucks Close to De Tracey Park (sponsored by Complete Estate Agency) and at the junction with Bradley Road, Haytor Road by the Fire Station roundabout, and in Battle Road opposite Mole Valley Farmers. Other sponsors and funding are being sought. Several more sites can be expected next year when the growing season returns. The council is also assessing the availability of suitable places for tree planting and is asking the public for its suggestions too. Some funding for this is available from various third parties.

Of course, Bovey Tracey can’t do it all on its own. Matters like better provision of public transport, park and ride facilities, electric vehicle community charging points, are dependent to some degree on other public authorities. Devon County and Teignbridge District are seeking to bring together common policies on all these matters, and to help smaller councils avoid having to re-invent the wheel, when others may have already been there and done it.

It is crucial that we all point in the same direction as far as reducing climate change and improving environmental sustainability is concerned, which means we all have a part to play. It is not just down to everyone else. Your house, garden, cars, lifestyle, travel, shopping habits and waste disposal are examples of where personal choices are implicated. A Climate Emergency: Bovey & Heathfield Facebook account has been set up, where you will receive advice from specialists on where you might be able to improve matters in and around your property and personal activities. If you are looking for this sort of information to help you personally in the climate action campaign, this could be a useful place to start. Over to you!

COMMUNITY COHESION........................

This is a matter that concerns me greatly, and I know that many of you feel the same way. I feel our national politicians have set a dreadful example of how not to behave, and there are those that think they now have a licence to behave in the same way. We all live in the same community and need to work together to consider the rights of each other. Working on the climate emergency is a good example of this. It’s about time to grow up and respect that others are entitled to their views, even if we don’t agree with them. That way peace and goodwill are the winners.

WOULD YOU SCRAP THE TV SOAPS?....................

I was interested to hear recently that viewers were getting fed up with the non-stop violence and sensationalism portrayed in the popular TV soaps, saying they were encouraging a belief that that sort of behaviour was normal, which is now reflected in the crime levels and domestic violence around the country. It is interesting that this view is taking prominence, because it has been denied for so long. As a result, many say they have now stopped watching the main soaps, and that they should be scrapped by the TV companies that show them. Now that really would be viewed as a sensation in its own right!


A woman sends her husband to the shops. “Get one pint of milk” she says, “and if they have any avocados, could you get six”. A few minutes later he’s back with six pints of milk. “Why did you get all those?” she asks. “Because the shop had avocados” says the man.

Behind every successful man is a surprised woman.

Recent reports indicate a significant downturn in London stockbrokers’ enthusiasm for fooling around under the table with each other.  This has led to a massive drop in the Footsy index.

Studies say that 90 per cent of people in any group think they’re in the top 10 per cent.

Another recent report has revealed that 99 per cent of people are stupid. Luckily, I’m in the other 4 percent.

Johnny just can’t get to sleep. He’s tried counting sheep, but by the time he’s got past 10,000, the alarm goes off.

First thing in the morning, there was a tap on the door. My plumber really does have an odd sense of humour.

They say taking regular naps helps stop you getting old. This works particularly well if you take them while driving.

Joe phones up the Incontinence Hotline. The first thing he hears is a voice saying “Can you hold please?”

It’s been reported that a gigantic bluebottle has escaped from a secret science facility in the USA and is threatening to destroy Washington DC. The police are sending in a SWAT team.

I hate it when there’s a knock on your front door and when you answer it there’s no one there. Someone told me it’s a game called Yodel.

I have a friend who is half Indian. He’s called Ian.

Trevor and Tom are waiting at the bus stop when they see a lorry go by with the back loaded up with rolls of turf. Tom is very impressed. “When I win the Lottery, that’s what I’m going to do”, he says. “What are you going to do?” asks Trevor. “Send my lawn away to be cut,” says Tom.


Tony Allen is a Bovey Tracey Town Councillor. This column is written in a personal capacity and not on behalf of any group or organisation. The jokes are all in the public domain, so you may have seen some or all before! If you’d like to contact me about my column, please do so via the Cottage Magazine website:

Other columns by Tony Allen

IDEAS & SUGGESTIONS FOR THE FUTURE........ - Thu 24 Jan 2019
Young people in the community - Thu 15 May 2014
Moving Bovey Tracey forward - Tue 4 Mar 2014
Is Bovey Tracey too shabby and run down to attract visitors? - Mon 9 Sep 2013
A public consultation should be just that - Mon 11 Mar 2013
Athletes, young people and rural watch - Tue 13 Nov 2012
Bovey Beats Most Of The Summer Weather - Wed 5 Sep 2012
What sort of Town do you want Bovey to be? - Sun 1 Jul 2012
Awards, Traffic, Policing & another Top Shop! - Thu 3 May 2012
RUBBISH, SPEED, LIGHTS OUT, BADGERS and more! - Mon 7 Nov 2011
Newspapers, Tragedy, Cheques and MORE! - Sun 11 Sep 2011
Community Matters - Mon 11 Jul 2011
Growth of Neighbourhood Watch In Bovey Tracey - Tue 3 May 2011
Which would you rather have: A PC (Police Commissioner) OR Several PCs (Police Constables)? - Thu 10 Mar 2011
Helping Ourselves In Time Of Austerity - Sun 9 Jan 2011
Security in the current Economic Climate - Thu 4 Nov 2010
Security Matters - Spelling it Out - Mon 6 Sep 2010
The Ultimate Deterrent or Not - Tue 6 Jul 2010
NHS Summary Care Records  Will Your Personal Health Information Be Secure? - Mon 3 May 2010
Social Networking - A risk or a good thing? - Sun 28 Feb 2010
Security Matters - Back to Basics! - Thu 3 Dec 2009
Security matters - are you being conned? - Wed 4 Nov 2009
Security matters - ID cards and hotel key cards - Wed 4 Nov 2009
Security matters - Personal security - Wed 4 Nov 2009
Security Matters - Who owns your identity? - Wed 4 Nov 2009
Security Matters - Victim of crime - need help? - Wed 4 Nov 2009

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