A Sad Farewell to My Ridiculous Car

Brentford West councillor Guy Lambert reports back

Cllr Guy Lambert
Cllr Guy Lambert

April 25, 2023


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Warning: This Article Contains Picture of Me in Jodhpurs

Unfairly Accusing a Local Legend of Being a Fraud

Dealing with the Shocking Handling of the A4 Roadworks

Cycling into Town with My Fellow Green Lizards

Approval on the Ground for New Permanent Road Barriers

Something May Actually Be Happening with the Cop Shop and Watermans

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In September 2021 I was on my way to a Nouveau Beaujolais party with old colleagues, one of those events where most of those there are older than me. Reminds me of those WW1 get togethers where the number left always diminished – I guess they would have to be over 120 now. Well, my regular reader, who probably thinks I need to see a psychiatrist to go to Nouveau Beaujolais parties, might just remember that I did have a coming together with a psychiatrist back then. Unfortunately he was (perhaps inappropriately) piloting a Smart car and I was (inappropriately, as it turned out) piloting a bicycle along Hammersmith Road. Why am I going on about that, you may ask. Well, 17 months later, after the shrink had his savings shrunk by about £600 and 6 points off his licence, the long awaited appointment with the medical consultant appointed by my insurer got around to examining me.

Since I was carless and it was too windy and uphill to go there, I double-bussed up to see Clementine Churchill at her hospital in Sudbury. As it turned out, Clemmie wasn’t in, but I met a consultant bloke who asked me a few questions, declined my suggestions he might take a few other offences coming from my ‘event’ in September 2022 into account, we were done. Naturally, I have heard no more, but the millennium is young yet.

Well, Saturday & Sunday was my first excursion this year into the world of cars going round in circles, at Goodwood. No car, and you will not be surprised I selected a different renter, Herr Volkswagen of Brentford East. This experience was completely seamless, good admin and fine car. Last time I drove VW Golf was c 1993 and this was a diesel that had been the company car of a computer engineer. I picked it up from our office in Cheadle Hulme and drove, chipped and putted it to Brentford. It was slow, noisy, the radio didn’t work and there were bits falling off the dashboard. I expected something similar but this was different experience altogether. Cars seem to be improving.

Goodwood was stuffed with Ferraris and Rolls Royces and the like, but mostly it’s the fast moving ones I like. Loved this unassuming and I imagine very slow car and its heart-warming story though.

old red car

Other static ones that appealed to me were these 2 Bristols

Other static ones that appealed to me were these 2 Bristols

A race grid with 33 Lotus Cortinas

A race grid with 33 Lotus Cortinas

And a car with a once-famous Belgian with a distinguished first name driving it

Here he is in his most popular days in parts of Britain, when he visited shortly after the Brexit vote

Guy Verhofstadt and David Vadies

Well. It was good for me to get away for a weekend and I was back on cars on Monday morning, as a man with a truck turned up and went away with the ridiculous one which had been part of my life for 9 years. Still handsome but no use to anybody ☹. More ridiculous than anything, I was quite upset to see it go.

Guys old jag

Straight back on the bike though, I was down to Hounslow Heath to talk to a man about numerous environment problems which he was looking for help with.

It is one of those places with a lot of concerns – this picture shows a car park with various abandoned vehicles – we’ve got one away now – but there are problems with crazy flytipping and ASB, poorly managed rubbish, - you name it…

I was busy catching up and we had a Labour Group meeting in the evening. We had a Councillor from Cooperative Party (which I’m also a member of) to talk about various initiatives, and some talk of our own – rental e-bikes, town centre plans etc – a strong evening’s debates.

On Tuesday I was out in Challis, Whitestile, Avenue, Enfield Roads with people from Hounslow Highways and various council officers. This was mainly a refresher for me about the inspections they make regularly looking at various environmental issues – street cleaning, street defects, weeds, leaves, trees etc. Also, how we tackle things that pass inspections but need stronger efforts.

Talking of ridiculous, we came upon something I had seen (and complained loudly about before) the inadequate ‘barrier’ between Whitestile and Enfield Road. It is far too low and putting a traffic cone on it has not got the problem under control!

As luck would have it, a posse of PCSOs were lurking on this corner. There is one each PCSO for the 2 Brentford wards, and a spare (much better than Prince Harry) and always good to see them, but at present there is not a single PC between the 2 wards, which is something else that is ridiculous! Anyway, as we proceeded on our tour, we again by coincidence came upon a team of what I call Weed Wombles from Hounslow Highways, busy tackling the weeds in Whitestile Road. We will see a lot more of this this year.

Cone on road barrier

Then I had a Teams meeting with the Leader and various from senior council officers about Coalo, then a Teams with the Friends of Watermans Park and the officers in charge – not my ward any more but I have a lot of energy invested!

Then it was a Hounslow FoodBox trustees meeting – we are short of committed trustees. Then in Hounslow for the formal Cabinet meeting with some controversy about the traffic calming scheme in Chiswick – a long tussle, I hope now settling. A big agenda with that plus e-bikes and developments in Adult Social care, Children’s Care, Armed Forces Covenant, the overall Local Plan and the town plans for Brentford and Hounslow.

We then met together as Cabinet to talk about some other things in early stage of development – improving schools, services for young people, parking, strategy for local assets. Wow, that was quite a day.

On Wednesday, a bit of excitement of my new (only 5 years old!) car arrived and I spent some time trying to get to know it (without a handbook 😲)

Then a Teams about how Lampton are improving how they track how their clients – mostly local residents – think they are doing. Then a meet with a resident from Isleworth about Thames Water, Mogden and water, then a face and face session with the chair of Lampton. He is off many minute to do the walk of Hadrian’s Wall (about 80 miles) getting ready for going from Geneva to Nice across the Alps etc (400 miles). Now that is really ridiculous (and very admirable). I asked him if he was going to take any elephants and he said no.

Today, normally Blogday, I has a day off and went to see my 2 sisters near Milton Keynes – a place that is equally far from the 3 of us. Nice lunch with no booze for me. Sister had a picture from her archive, of her little brother on a GoKart at his dad’s safety course in LIverpool

I promise you this nonsense will not go on.

Councillor Guy Lambert

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