“We don’t want to lose our carers”

February 7, 2011

Monday 7th February 2011

By Adam Kula, Swindon Advertiser

A DISABLED father and his parents have appealed to Swindon council – Save Our Carers. The Hardy family claim that cutting the jobs of 64 home carers and farming their work out to the private sector is a ruthless move which is hitting the vulnerable. Read the rest of this entry »


Users’ concern at Oasis sell-off

November 22, 2010

Monday 22nd November 2010


By Charley Morgan, Swindon Advertiser


The announcement that the Oasis Leisure Centre could be sold off to a private developer by the cash-strapped Swindon Council was met with dismay by people using the centre.

The Adver reported on Saturday that the council had placed advertisements in trade magazines inviting developers to make expressions of interest in the site.

Read the rest of this entry »

Car parking attendants to go on strike

November 20, 2010

Charley Morgan, Swindon Advertiser

CAR parking attendants are planning to go on strike on the first day of late-night Christmas shopping tomorrow.

The industrial action is the latest development in an ongoing dispute between Swindon Council and Unison members over pay.

Read the rest of this entry »

Unison members strike on Fridays too

November 9, 2010

8th November 2010

STRIKE action by Unison members was escalated as the union members extended their weekend strikes to Friday too.

Staff belonging to the union from the town’s car parks did not work on Friday and those at the Link Centre stopped work at 8pm on Friday too. Swindon Council’s leisure, car parking and parks staff have been taking industrial action following a dispute over pay.

The council has withdrawn extra pay for working unsociable hours like evenings and weekends.

Some staff are losing £300 a week because of it and Unison members have been on strike at weekends since September 25.

Unison branch secretary Bob Cretchley said the union was preparing to ballot staff from other council departments.

We have already given notice that we are balloting further groups in the libraries and museums departments and we could be escalating the action,” he said.

But we did have a meeting with the council on Thursday and they indicated they were looking to try and find a way to resolve this.”

From the Swindon Advertiser. Looks like an Adver error; that should be £300 a month.

Swindon fights back

October 23, 2010

UNISON members in Swindon are fighting back against their employer with a series of rolling strikes, after the council decided to unilaterally axe payments to staff for working unsocial hours.

The council has refused to negotiate, so members are striking each weekend, affecting car parks, leisure centres and country parks.

South West regional organiser Chris Howe says that the first weekend of action went well.

The largest leisure centre in Swindon had to be closed,” he explains. “But members of the public that we spoke to were understanding.”

Indeed, the pickets at car parks in the area reported “no negative comments” and even some donations to the hardship fund.

But the branch is appealing for more support for the hardship fund in order to maintain action.

You can send a donation to: UNISON, Civic Offices, Swindon SN1 2JH, cheques made payable to Swindon UNISON branch.


Council sets out where axe will fall

October 22, 2010

Friday 22nd October 2010

By Scott McPherson, Swindon Advertiser

AS the dust settles on the biggest budget cuts in post-war history, Swindon Council has revealed where their axe could fall to bung a £20m blackhole in the next two years.

The council yesterday published its hit list which includes asking schools to buy back some services they want, scrapping some bus service subsidies, turning off 450 street lights, moving the Visitor Information Centre from Regent Street into the Central Library, charging for replacement recycling boxes, reducing the amount of money it hands out for allotments and start a tendering process for a range of services in the adult social care department. Read the rest of this entry »

Cuts – “we ought to be outraged”

October 21, 2010

Letter to the Swindon Advertiser


I too was outraged when I read about the staff strike affecting the Link Centre this weekend but my outrage was not directed at those going on strike. In fact I have been experiencing a growing sense of outrage that has been steadily building, in retrospect, since before this ‘financial crisis’ began but even more so since our coalition government came to power and began dismantling and irrevocably damaging this country’s public services.

Read the rest of this entry »