Costa or The Caledonia? Are Thirty-Somethings Opting For The Former

A look at as to why people under 35 years old are drinking less than their parents.

I like a good coffee now and again. Sometimes it may be from Costabucks Nero or the local supermarket café. I am also a connoisseur of fairtrade brands, not only coffee but also tea. For me, substandard tea or coffee is anathema to productivity and workplace relations. In a ideal world, I would like to see Taylor’s of Harrogate’s finest beverages in almost every office throughout the UK, or another reasonable fairtrade brand. Continue reading “Costa or The Caledonia? Are Thirty-Somethings Opting For The Former”

Oldham’s Grand Design, 1948 Style

How Oldham would have changed beyond recognition

What might have been, but never was 1
What Could Have Been: the County of Oldham Borough’s new civic centre on the site of Tommyfield Market. (Photograph courtesy of Jeremy Sutcliffe).

According to today’s Oldham Evening Chronicle, Councillor Jim McMahon aims to create 2,015 jobs by 2015, with flagship schemes to add a new hotel and conference centre. This would also include the old town hall’s conversion to a multiplex cinema.

It was this recent story which inspired me to write about another grand design, this time from 1948.

Besides being a century since Oldham’s first bus left The Star Inn, 2013 is also the anniversary of an unrealised plan which would have had a great affect on the town centre. By great affect, I mean anything much greater than the opening of Spindles Shopping Centre, Gallery Oldham, St. Mary’s Estate or Mahdlo. One which would have upset the grid pattern of some of the town centre’s older streets. Continue reading “Oldham’s Grand Design, 1948 Style”

Tameside, In the Eye of the Tory Storm: April 2013 and Beyond

A Cuts Scene Investigation Special: Prospects for our borough

In 2009, our borough was in the midst of recovering from the global economic downturn along with numerous others in the United Kingdom. Even so, there was some optimism in the air. Despite voting ‘no’ to the congestion charge, Ashton-under-Lyne – thanks to a different funding package – got her trams. Though internet shopping began to make inroads, the Arcades Shopping Centre was slated for future extension. Public services were well funded. People still had money, and confidence, though energy prices started to climb. The new IKEA Store also helped things. Continue reading “Tameside, In the Eye of the Tory Storm: April 2013 and Beyond”

How Peak is Peak Hour? Peak [Period] Practice for Beginners

A rough guide to the perils of peak period bus travel

First Greater Manchester Enviro400, SN12 AOF, near Rochdale bus station
Photographed on the cusp of the evening peak, this luscious Enviro400 just outside Rochdale bus station

If you’re familiar with the vagaries of public transport in the United Kingdom, you will notice these following factors about peak hour commuting: Continue reading “How Peak is Peak Hour? Peak [Period] Practice for Beginners”