Tenant’s Joy

Feedback from tenants of Douglas Borough Council’s Lord Street flats due to be relocated to apartments in the Council’s £12.6m Peel Road social housing development has been overwhelmingly positive, after they attended an open day at Douglas Town Hall.

Housing officers, together with representatives from utility and service providers, were on hand to provide tenants with information, while a digital tour gave tenants an opportunity to view the interior of typical apartments and details of fittings and fixtures. You can see more, or take a 3D tour of the flats, here.

Housing and Property Committee Chair Councillor Janet Thommeny said: ‘I’m delighted with the encouraging feedback we received from the open day. We aimed to provide tenants with as much information as possible and thanks to the hard work of our officers and other parties in arranging the event it’s fair to say that we achieved our ambition. Moving home can be stressful so the Council was determined to communicate with our tenants in an effective and clearly presented way that would be involving and interactive. We’re truly grateful to our tenants for sharing their views.’

Turning Turning Turning

The new year has begun with a flurry of activity at the Great Laxey Wheel, where contractors have commenced work on a project to repair and conserve the iconic waterwheel. 

Designed by the Victorian engineer, Robert Casement, the wheel was completed in 1854 to pump water from the depths of the Laxey mines using water from Glen Mooar to power the wheel.

John-Paul Walker, Historic Buildings Architect for Manx National Heritage, the charity responsible for the Island’s natural and cultural heritage said: ‘Following a competitive tendering process, we are delighted to be working alongside Auldyn Construction, who will undertake phase 1 of the project.  This will see old render and defective timbers replaced and the wheel, housing, railings and viewing platform re-painted. Works will take place over a four month period.  We are also delighted and extremely grateful for the assistance of the Laxey Mines Research Group, whose expert volunteers will be undertaking essential preparatory works for the second phase of the conservation work.  The Laxey Mines Research Group have been directly involved with the Laxey site since the 1980s and bring unparalleled expertise and knowledge to the project.  The second phase of the works will see repairs to the T-rocker, along with the rods, bogies and rod duct.’

JVT is Going

Prof Sir Jonathan Van-Tam is leaving his role as England’s deputy chief medical officer. Prime Minister Boris Johnson thanked him for his ‘extraordinary contribution to our country’. The professor said it had been the ‘greatest privilege’ of his career to have served the UK during the coronavirus pandemic.  He will continue to work for the government until the end of March before taking up a new role at the University of Nottingham.

His use of a metaphor was a popular regular feature during the UK’s covid briefings. Fittingly in this instance, it is much like a star played having helped avoid relegation before getting the team to a mid-table and heading on to pastures new widely respected by his teammates and fans.

French Open Borders Again

France will relax its restrictions for those travelling from the UK from Friday, the government has announced.  Vaccinated travellers will no longer need a compelling reason to enter France, and will not have to self-isolate when they arrive. But a negative Covid test, taken 24 hours before leaving the UK, will still be required for all those arriving. Travel companies welcomed the news – with Jet2 reporting a ‘sharp’ spike in flight bookings to ski destinations.

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