Alunh

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  • in reply to: Plans for house building in Wrexham #146051
    Alunh
    Alunh
    Participant

    It’s brilliant that the town already has the ideal facility for the extra demand on secondary schooling. This will save the Council a fortune!!

    in reply to: Best place to sell old books? #145670
    Alunh
    Alunh
    Participant

    Tut Tut Welsh Dresser; how can you forget the name of a local shop.

    On the point in question……you would be much better selling them on line on Ebay, Alibris, Abe or Amazon. Please bear in mind that the price that you have seen on Internet sites may be for specific editions and it might also represent the price that the seller would want to get…..not what they get.

    There are several local places that buy books including places in Summerhil, Marchweil, Llangollen and Wrexham. At a guess, you’ll find that there will be little interest unless they are actually collectible.

    Best of luck!

    in reply to: Regeneration Of Indoor Markets. #145636
    Alunh
    Alunh
    Participant

    You make an excellent point Nen. There is a case to close the Markets completely if they are allowed to drift into oblivion. Spending money on them is useful but it’s never a silver bullet and pouring money into the Markets without a complete rethink about their purpose is a waste of everyone’s time and money.

    The funny things is, WCBC have brought in two organisations to look at the Markets and their place in Wrexham’s retail mix, Quarterbridge and the Manchester Met. The Met are experts on Markets and Market towns and they have produced reports galore explaining how Markets are invaluable to towns and the traps to avoid falling into where bad Markets are concerned. If you google the Markets Matter reports you will see their commentary on towns and Markets and you are quite right in identifying the fact that Markets that naval gaze will just deteriorate at the Rate Payer’s expense. If you look across the border at Bury and Altrincham, you will see two markets operating in a very different way to our own, which are major tourist pulls and which have helped revive the respective Independent sectors of their towns

    in reply to: Ysgol Bryn Alyn in Special Measures #145032
    Alunh
    Alunh
    Participant

    You draw attention to some vital points Helen, some of which counter elements of Matt’s interesting observations above.

    I would always argue that more money is vital in Education. To say differently would be silly. Equally, as the Daily Post report suggests, success in Education is never guaranteed by it. Reference is made to a number of negatives in this school, but, in fairness, these observations could be made about many schools across Wales.

    Most people of a certain age and generation have no idea how a modern classroom in Wales operates, Wales allowing no choice in the nature of Secondary Schooling (bar language and faith). Schools are not selective nor indeed, as with Academies, are they elective. There is a form of choice available, in that you can opt for a different school than the local one to your house, but this all tends to be a bit of a lottery and is often very inconvenient. The schools rarely stream and even setting is only available in certain subjects, becoming more common further up the age range. The buzz-word for years has been Child-Centred Education, which is the logical consequence of Mixed ability classes, and in a subject like History or Geography that often means year groups containing a range of academic variables, many with reading ages of a huge contrast. In theory, a Teacher is no longer supposed to teach from the front, and will have to use common-denominator language when they do. The contrasting abilities demand that the teacher sets variable work for each group and will move around groups inspecting work produced and helping the individuals and groups within the class. All of this requires small groups to be effective and if the money sourced is not allocated to reducing groups, chaos will ensue.

    If, by chance, a number of youngsters in any class or year happen to be “distracting” the whole lesson fails. This is often what the Inspectors are talking about in the Reports but the public at large has no idea why the structure of all this lends itself towards failure

    in reply to: Ysgol Bryn Alyn in Special Measures #144908
    Alunh
    Alunh
    Participant

    Good post Matt

    in reply to: Ysgol Bryn Alyn in Special Measures #144907
    Alunh
    Alunh
    Participant

    It’s very easy to focus on a particular school when negative things occur in Education, and sometimes the focus will be justified. I am not going to offer any comment on Bryn Alyn.

    Education in Wrexham was shaped until the 1970s by the Butler Education Act of 1944. This created a 3 tier system of post-11 Education and by the 1960s Wrexham’s youngsters were taught in a range of schools and institutions that supposedly matched their abilities or needs. As now, within the town itself there was Morgan Llwyd and St Josephs, a Boy’s Grammar (Grove Park), a Girl’s Grammar (Grove Park), a Grammar Tech (Yale), two Secondary Moderns (Bryn Offa and St David’s), and a Technical College. Whatever the philosophical rights and wrongs of each and any of these, that offered 8 different Institutions providing some sort of contrasting Education for youngsters. This system was abandoned in the 1970s for understandable reasons. Unfortunately the successor system was flawed.

    Within England, by the time of the Blair Governments, there was a recognition that bog-standard, one size fits all Comprehensives were not adequate in meeting the needs of the youngsters attending them and addressing their multi-varied needs. A lot of soul-searching then went on to find a system that gave all youngsters the opportunity to fulfill their potential. This is still going on. What is clear in Wales and Wrexham is that this process has not been undertaken and it needs to happen. Otherwise, we will be playing Pass the Special measures Parcel forever and a day

    in reply to: Tŷ Pawb (merged mega thread) #144674
    Alunh
    Alunh
    Participant

    I am not in the anti-Ty Pawb camp. At this stage that doesn’t make much sense. We are, as they say, where we are.

    I am, however, not oblivious to the immense negativity surrounding the Arts Hub and certainly think that much needs to be done to either make it successful OR if needs be, to minimise the losses.

    We have had something like 3 years to work out exactly what the Arts Hub project is all about, some 3 years since WCBC took some of the “suggestions” that Quarterbridge came up with, and we should be better positioned at this stage than we appear. After all, the Welsh Assembly has picked up a big shovel, taken a pile of dosh collected in and handed it over to WCBC to spend on this building. We would have to be dumb not to be able to make a success of the project, especially when we remember that the Peoples Market was actually trading very successfully in this unit until close to the time that it closed for refurbishment.

    Firstly, my logic tells me that we needed to conduct a MARKETING exercise on this unit before we moved too far in its development, determining what the nature of the Hub would be and my rationale tells me that the most likely combination to be successful would have been a mix of Arts and Crafts with the emphasis on retail. This would have allowed small local producers of A & C to dominate and the Market element would have been a natural accessory to the other. These sorts of places are popular nationwide. This would have meant the de-emphasis of “high” arts and performance, which invariably will struggle for funding and a real emphasis on businesses operating within the A & C world. Secondly, the naming of the entity, Ty Pawb, strikes me as naval gazing. The potential customer base is Welsh, Anglo-Welsh, English and other, yet we have put the economics of the brand name behind the politics.

    We are a few weeks away from the opening of the Hub. If it’s successful, the whole Independent sector of Wrexham could share in the success. It is not too late for some serious fine-tuning. Much needs doing…….and I hope that the discussion moves on to constructive ideas about how to turn this potential white elephant into a successful entity

    • This reply was modified 4 months, 1 week ago by Alunh Alunh.
    in reply to: Tŷ Pawb (merged mega thread) #144473
    Alunh
    Alunh
    Participant

    I really hope that Ty Pawb is a roaring success.

    Jim draws attention to some vital facts and the only reason that facts like these are ignored is because many of them are abstract. Firstly, the money going into Ty Pawb from the Welsh Assembly is not generated by some Welsh Assembly PLC but is drawn from the Welsh tax payer. That means me and you. Similarly anything provided by WCBC comes from the same source. Over the last few decades the Car Park, Peoples Market and adjacent shops have been revenue earners above and beyond the staff they have employed and the businesses that have operated within their scope. That has been good for the town. Net revenue drawn from the profits has fed into the WCBC system.

    Whilst there are reasons that WCBC has moved from the prior template, it has now moved into unknown terrain. Not only has it had to bite the bullet on the possible net revenue stream but ongoing losses and subsidies are penciled in. These may (or may not) be temporary. Either way we have to add the net revenue lost to the loss to understand the financial sacrifice being made here. It is a ++ game.

    That is why WCBC has to get this project right and hit the ground running. At this point I am concerned. Hopefully my concerns prove completely wrong. The proof of the pudding will be in the Marketing, Advertising and Organisation of the project.

    • This reply was modified 4 months, 1 week ago by Alunh Alunh.
    in reply to: Under 18's and self determination #144264
    Alunh
    Alunh
    Participant

    I can’t see how the idea of being a Tory (or not) has crept into this argument Benjamin. It’s great that young people are imbued with social conscience but that doesn’t mean that we should move the goalposts on voting merely because people appear to care about issues all of a sudden. Caring and understanding are two different matters and I’m not actually sure at what age it is wise to allow youngsters to vote. The suggestion about Rate paying or tax paying was somewhat tongue in cheek but the idea behind it was that at least those who did these two things were perhaps showing signs that they had moved from one stage of life (childhood) to another (adulthood). A good example of this links in with the discussion about student fees where I have seen little real debate involving youngsters about the implications of waiving the fees when perhaps 50% of the population are attending University. How many of those supposedly imbued with social conscience actually understand the old left wing adage of needs and abilities and that the real losers in waiving University fees would be the more vulnerable in society.

    But we digress. The real issue is whatever age we come up with is arbitrary and I would be very uncomfortable with 16

    in reply to: Under 18's and self determination #144193
    Alunh
    Alunh
    Participant

    Leaving all of the above aside……….I’m not sure at what age people should vote. It used to be 21 and now it’s 18. Some suggest 16 using the lame argument that youngsters don’t engage. I don’t like 16 because I don’t particularly like 18. If 16, why not 14…or 12. Ideally, a successful democracy needs people who understand the issues……..but that’s a laugh as well. Perhaps stick with 18 but add to it those who are paying taxes or rates over 16. That has an amazingly educational effect

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