Thursday, March 27, 2008

We are one today

We're one year old today. Hasn't the time flown?

I'm not surprised we're still here - after all, unlike the opposition, we always expected the Public Inquiry to drag on (although it's now even surpassing our own expectations). Plus, we are in this for the long haul. The politicians may look forward to 2012/2013 (the planned date of construction of the bypass), but even if all goes the way of the destroyers of the earth A LOT can (and will) happen to try to knock this project off the rails. There is a war, this is a weapon.

One thing can be sure, if you want to know what's going on, you will read it here first.

Last year, we set out to fill gap that existed in the coverage of the debate about this road. This blog fully intended to become the only regularly updated website which tackles the core and broader issues of the bypass. 12 months later, it remains so. It's not that we want to hog the limelight, but given the glacial progress of this scheme, the devil often makes work for idle hands. Having said that, if the blog becomes an end in itself, then it will be time to end the blog. The contributors are all activists, but our activity must come before our contributions.

We have drawn some criticism for having anonymous contributors, largely from two sources. The first was High Peak Councillor Anthony McKeown, someone who clearly likes to keep his blog free from comments, so much so that you're only permitted to comment if you attach a name. How he knows any name that is provided represents the posters' real identity, we will never know but of course for Anthony having a 'real' identity is a condition for your freedom of speech. It's indicative of how far in a right-wing direction the Labour Party have travelled of late.

The other critic was the pro-bypass blog 'Support the Hollingworth Bypass' which we have evidence was written by the Longdendale Councillor Sean Parker-Perry briefly last year before being taken down lest he got the sack. This is ironic given that the blog was in itself anonymous. The blog has recently been resurrected by us (with a slightly different URL) so anyone can read what he had to say. Watch this space for more about him soon.

Over the last year, we have added more features to the site, including videos and selected brief insights into who is reading us (obviously focusing on the opposition). We've become technically more savvy, so that we now have a lovely counter that tells us how much the bypass is costing (25 pence per second - an educated guess, but we look forward to seeing how accurate it is). And we feel we now a have a broad range of (much valued) contributors.

We always welcome new readers, so if you haven't already done so please tell your friends, neighbours and colleagues of our existence

To all our contributors - your input is essential and valued. For all our readers - whatever your views - you know you need the fix this blog provides, so keep on reading and spreading the word. Here's to another 12 months.

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