With Christmas one week away I decided I would definitely go to watch ‘The Mighty Shakers’ yesterday play against Oxford United? Always the optimist I predicted a 2-1 win. Unfortunately although Bury were indeed winning 2-1 for a brief period in the first half they were pegged back to 2-2 at the interval and sadly conceded another goal to lose the game 3-2. With my home team Rotherham on a run of bad results as bad as Bury it is not a good year for me on the footy front but hope springs eternal and I am hopeful both Rotherham and Bury have better results in 2017!
As Christmas approaches I am attending a Nine Lessons and Carols service this afternoon and I have accepted an invitation to attend a special Christmas service at St John’s Free Church in Tottington after that.
During today’s Topical Questions session to the Department for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport the Minister for Sport agreed that he would join me in congratulating Bury FC on their promotion and wishing them well in Division One next season.
After a couple of near misses in recent years Bury FC secured automatic promotion to play in League Division 1 next season following their 3-2 win away from home today at current Division 2 leaders Chesterfield.
Congratulations to all involved with Bury FC.
Sue and I took CeeCee to his dog training class in Bury this morning. I think it says alot about the outlook of local folk and dog owners particularly that despite the heavy rain the class was still as full as usual. I have to say I don’t think CeeCee was all that keen especially when he had to go into the down position and get his undercarriage wet!
Despite the rain I decided that because of the ice and snow over Christmas I had not been able to get to see a football match I would go down to Gigg Lane and watch the Shakers play Aldershot. After falling behind to an early goal Bury went in 1-0 down at half time and I feared the losing run might continue. However the Shakers battled well in very difficult conditions in the second half and equalised to secure another point in their push for promotion.
Bury 3 Notts County 3. Whilst the focus of the National press may have been on the game involving the England team playing Brazil in the Middle East Bury were entertaining high flying Notts County who are now owned by a collection of Middle Eastern investors and whose Director of Football is none other than the former England Team Manager Sven-Goran Eriksson.
Grey skies and heavy rain had left the pitch fairly sticky to say the least and I think it is a credit to both teams that they were able to serve up such an entertaining game. As viewers across the Country to the last night’s BBC League highlights show will have seen Bury were denied another goal when on loan debutant Danny Nardiello’s goal bound shot came to a halt in the goal mouth mud only inches from crossing the line.
I was glad I decided to brave the weather and go down to watch the game. Looking at my future diary I fear I may not be able to get to too many more games before Christmas – in fact there are only three home games left before Christmas! I urge any Shakers fans who have not been down to Gigg Lane recently to try and see the team because if yesterday’s game is anything to go by they will not be disappointed.
This week sees the launch of the Conservative Party’s first National poster campaign of the year. I am not sure if we will have any up in Bury so I have reproduced the ad above. I thought it was quite striking although no doubt Labour voters will not approve!
Last night I went with Sue to take CeeCee to his training class and then on to a meeting of the Conservative Group at the Town Hall, the first of 2009.
Last Wednesday evening I attended the Ramsbottom, North Manor and Tottington Local Area Partnership meeting which this month was held at St. Andrew’s in Ramsbottom. The main speaker was from the NHS who spoke about their priorities to improve peoples health. As usual the meeting was not very well attended. I tend to interpret this as meaning local residents are generally happy with the situation. If there is a major problem locally then, quite rightly, residents will attend to voice their concerns. Some points were raised by those present such as whether Bridge Street in Ramsbottom needs to be closed for the Christmas Market and I am sure that the pros and cons of this will be considered over the coming months.
On Saturday I was surprised that despite the freezing weather which resulted in all but three of the games in Division Two of the Football League being postponed Bury’s game at Gigg Lane was still on. I went along and in what was not one of the most attractive games I have ever seen Bury won 1-0 to keep up their push for a play-off place at the end of the season.
I think one of the most crucial elements of politics is “trust”. Voters need to be able to trust politicians even if they do not agree with them. One of the greatest problems in recent years has been that voters are turned off the wole political process because quite simply they do not believe ie trust any politicians. It can be argued that the roots of this cynicism can be blamed on all the major parties.
This week we have seen the issue of MP’s pay raised once more and with it the issue of their expenses. Apparently MP’s are allowed to claim up to £250 without providing a receipt. Now this would not be aproblem if the public trusted their elected representatives. I can see there are strong arguments for saying it would not be cost effective to remove this de minimis limit but I wonder if removing it might increase the trust public have in MP’s.
It had end to end sometime and Bury’s great FA cup run has finally ended with their 2-0 defeat at Southampton. It has been a great effort this season especially after the huge disappointment and, I believe, injustice of last season when Bury were thrown out of the FA cup.