The return of the snow over the weekend has once again played havoc with day to day activities and normality has again gone out the window. This time not only is the snow disrupting public and private transport, it is also making the business of looking after livestock difficult and frustrating. I am beginning to tire of having to carry a sledge hammer when I go to check the polo ponies. I hasten to add that the purpose for it is not for use on them but to crack the very thick ice which forms on the water troughs most nights.
The ponies appear to be thriving in this weather; they are looking fat and well and seem to enjoy cavorting around the snow covered fields. However, they like the cattle are getting through twice as much hay as normal to combat the cold, which is a concern as we started the winter with limited reserves. I certainly hope that the predictions of an early spring in February turn out to be true.
This icy blast which we are told originates in Canada and arrives here via the arctic is unusual; I hope the headlines which tell us that it may continue for the best part of a month are wrong. With the price of heating and transport fuel escalating, it is a worry as there are already reports of shortages.
I am appalled to hear that unscrupulous companies are charging way over the odds for oil plus an excess of £500 for it to be delivered! This is a scandal and should be classed as a criminal offence.
Every day I hear of diesel being stolen from farms and businesses. The thieves are draining lorries and tractors as well as on farm storage tanks, but It appears that the police are unable or unwilling to follow these incidents up despite being directed to both the perpetrators and locations of the missing fuel.
Apparently one gallon of diesel is much like another so they say they are unable to identify where it has come from despite the tip off. The result is that these criminals are getting away with it and their victims are becoming increasingly frustrated, some having been targeted on a number of occasions.
The worry is that if the police are unable to put a stop to this criminal activity, people will take the law into their own hands and we could well see a repeat of what happened to Julian Gardener who tried to protect his property; it can only end in tragedy.
If the police are incapable of tackling this growing problem they should say so but they must then be prepared to face the consequences when a growing number of normally law abiding citizens do take the law into their own hands in an attempt to protect their property and the financial future of their businesses.
*I noted with alarm that government agencies are about to target the innocent wood burner. Someone has decided that they are not energy efficient and they produce too much dust. As Ote Hall relies almost entirely on two wood burners for heat and hot water, anyone attempting to decommission my wood burners had better watch out!
The debate regarding the future energy supplies continues to dominate the press; I have to agree with those who warn of the danger of relying upon ‘green’ energy in the form of wind turbines in particular. I have nothing against these graceful giants; I actually think they look rather elegant and I would be happy to have a few here. However, it is apparent that they have very limited use and we certainly cannot reply upon them to provide sufficient power to keep the lights on.
I think we would all be very cold indeed and lacking illumination if wind turbines were our only source of power. It is freezing cold and currently the demand for electricity is sky high and most of the time there has not been a breath of wind.
The government is aware that time is running out for the existing nuclear power stations, a new generation of nuclear power plants should have been planned and developed years ago, now there is much catching up to do.
Sites have been approved for around eight new nuclear plants, but that is only half the number which will apparently be required by 2030. The cost to the tax payer to bring the UK up to date and ensure we have sufficient electricity supplies in years to come is colossal. At a time of austerity and an escalating cost of living it will be a huge additional burden on household expenses. What a pity the last government failed to tackle this crucial matter when there was a glut of income. Sadly that income was spent tactically to keep them in power instead of planning for the future – energy security and food security go hand in hand – what a shame politics gets in the way and prevents sensible forward planning.
I wish everyone a very Happy and safe Christmas.
Carola Godman Law