My Blog hits a quarter of a million views

When I first started blogging I never knew if anyone would actually read the posts apart from my mum and dad. However, looking at my stats after one of my posts got  – and still is – a huge amount of traffic,  I have found out  my blog has  passed the 250,000 views mark. In fact at the time of writing this post the blog has had 256,352 views. That is pretty impressive considering my site is not a professional site, and is about my views whilst I carry out the role of a Cornwall Councillor.

As a Councillor trying to explain my role, and get important messages out, I have found blogging is ideal for doing this. Now I know not everyone will agree with what I write, and I would be delusional if I thought they would, however from an engagement point it just shows how far and wide a few hundred words can travel.  The posts are not only read via social media, as I have seen my posts appear in both national and local media.

Of course this blog has been the bane to some, but I have never tried to be mean, or personal. All I have tried to do is explain how I feel and get information out and break down the many myths of a local authority and the role of a Councillor. As for Cornwall Council, the authority has come a long way since I started blogging. It has been a bumpy road and I haven’t always agreed with the decision, but this is a democracy.  The Council has also much to its credit embraced social media and is seen as leading light compare to other local authorities.

So which posts out of the 1,039 which I have written, have been the most popular? One post,  ‘Unauthorised absence during the school term’ has had a staggering 7,031 (and still counting) views. It also has had over 2000 views on Facebook. All these views are organic. Though granted this subject is currently a hot topic both locally and nationally.  Here are the top six most views posts on my blog:

  1. Unauthorised absence during the school term – 7,031 views to date
  2. Duxford Airshow – Flying Legends and a mid-air collision  -3308 views
  3. Beware Cornwall is being targeted by a professionally run scam – 2214 views
  4. Davidstow Wind Farm – 2048 views
  5. Porthleven counts the cost of the storms – 1,878 views
  6. Porthleven B3304 Update – 1,268

Thanks for reading and putting up with my quirky grammar. Maybe I will make the half-million mark? Who knows eh?

And That Was 2011

With little more than a few hours to go until we enter a New Year, I thought I would reflect on a very interesting, and in many parts, challenging year. Looking back on some of the blog topics it budgets, cuts (or re-organising if you are the Leadership) have featured heavily. Planning has also been a busy with some very large applications being dealt with over the year.

Budgets are likely to feature heavily again, especially in the first few months of 2012 when Cornwall Council sets its precept for council tax. The main topic on the budget will be on accepting the one-off grant from Mr Pickles to freeze council tax for the period of 2012/13. I am still unsure if this is the right course because I fear we would have to raise council tax quite heavily in the 2013/14 period to make up the shortfall. 

The services Cornwall Council provides are no doubt going to be under more pressure. This will no doubt lead to some being scaled back, stopped, or town and parish councils having to take them on. The issue of the public toilets still has not be solved, just postponed. Other areas like open spaces, and ‘land surplus to requirements’ will also be discussed in the coming year.

Sitting on Strategic Planning has resulted in some huge decisions having to be taken. The Hayle supermarket battle was very interesting. At the start, Hayle had a poor deal, but I really believe by the end of the process Hayle got the best deal. Supermarkets have been prominent in planning applications during 2011, and no doubt they will feature heavily again in 2012. The stadium, The Eastern District, and other large-scale planning applications in and around Truro are going to feature a lot.

A great pleasure has been working with Porthleven Town Council. This group of people really do try to get what’s best for Porthleven. It is not easy, but they are willing to stand-up and be counted when they have to. They showed great courage in resisting the heavy-handed way Cornwall Council was treating them over the public toilets. As like in 2011, I am looking forward to working with the town council in 2012.

I have not won every battle/issue over the last year, but those I have won has had an impact for the better for Porthleven and the areas of Helston I serve. I am still really disappointed on not getting the £100,000 for Porthleven in the Seaside Town Program, but not all is lost, as the working group will still press on with the plan during 2012. I am confident the long, and frustrating battle to raise funds for the Bulwark play park could be over in the first six months of 2012 resulting in the park being built. As the park stands a very good chance of being funded from two pots of money. Let’s hope it does pay off.

I am still amazed at how many people take the time to read this blog. It was great to be voted so highly on the annual Total Politics Blogging Awards. Being placed above so many professional bloggers was really a highlight. I know not everyone agrees with what I say, and I think that is a very good because I like  the various debates that have taken place in 2011. I am though very grateful for people taking the time to read what I have to say. I again look for the same in 2012.

So finally, I would like to wish everyone who reads this blog a very happy New Year, and all the best in 2012.

See you in 2012!

Two Years Ago….

Who would have thought it; two years (today) have passed since I started to blog. Looking back on some of the subjects has reminded me that without raising some important issue things might have turned out differently. I am still amazed how many people read the site and the page views per month reaches near 10,000.

For me, the blog is a good way to keep people informed on what’s going on, and it acts like some sort of therapy by explaining and talking about some of the frustrations and problems I face.

So, happy 2nd birthday to the blog, and please keep reading!

Trinkets and Awards Pt 2

After doing so well in Total Politics Blog Awards 2011 in the non-aligned category (number 18) I might have got a mention in the Councillor category. Today those results were released and to my shock and amazements I made it into the top ten Councillor blogs in the UK. In fact I came number 6! Last year I was listed 28

It was also a good day for other Cornish Councillor bloggers with six other names in the top 35. The Cornwall Councillors are Alex Folkes -7, Dick Cole – 13, Jeremy Rowe -14 and Jude Roberson -27. One other Councillor from Illogan Parish Council, Stephen Richardson was listed 16.

This is an excellent result for everyone concerned. Again, I would like to thank all who voted and please continue to read and take part in the debates.

And to top it all off I am listed in the Top 100 Political Blogs in the UK at number 88.

Total Politics Blog Awards 2011

The 2011 Total Politics Blog Awards are now upon us. Last year I made it into the top 30 Councillor awards coming in at number 28. I was extremely happy with firstly being nominated, and secondly coming so high.

I will certainly be voting, as there are many good blogs out there. You can vote for your favourite blog HERE.

Of course it would be very nice if you could vote for me, but if not, there is always next year!

Blogging – One year on

Today the 1st November is exactly one year on since I started blogging. When I started I never really knew how people would react to it, or would even read it.  I can honestly say I have been surprised in people do read it and more importantly comment on what I write. I know the blog has not been met with universal approval. Some have taken objection to what I write and how I write it. I am sorry they do, as I don’t write it to offend, but to give some insight to what I do on a day by day bases.

In the year I have posted 228 articles covering all sorts of topics. The blog has been visited and read 13889 times. Most hits have been via my Facebook page, but other more random and obscure searches via Google that included the words ‘Councillor, Cornwall, Parking, sex’ all in one sentence (strange but true). I have regular readers from the US and Ukraine.  

I can honestly say I do enjoy writing it, and more importantly very happy with people reading what I have to say. So here is to another year of blogging!

Thanks again for reading.

Total Politics – Top 30 Councillor Blogs

I can honestly say I am stunned. I came home today to find that I had made the top 30 Councillor Blogs in the UK. I came in at number 28. I would like to say a huge THANK YOU to all those who took the time to vote for me. Here is the link to the Results.

I was not the only Cornish Blogger to make the list. Councillor Alex Folkes came in at number 5 (His LINK). Well done to him.

Thank you again.

Like my Blog?

This could be seen as a shameless plug for my blog, but if you do like it you might consider voting for it. Clicking this link will take you to the site Total Politics Blog Poll Link

If you don’t fancy clicking the link, here are the instructions:

1. You must vote for your ten favourite blogs and ranks them from 1 (your favourite) to 10 (your tenth favourite).
2. Your votes must be ranked from 1 to 10. Any votes which do not have rankings will not be counted.
3. You MUST include at least FIVE blogs in your list, but please list ten if you can. If you include fewer than five, your vote will not count.
4. Email your vote to
5. Only vote once.
6. Only blogs based in the UK, run by UK residents or based on UK politics are eligible. No blog will be excluded from voting.
7. Anonymous votes left in the comments will not count. You must give a name
8. All votes must be received by midnight on 31 July 2010. Any votes received after that date will not count.

If you have your own blog, please do encourage your readers to take part. Last year, more than 90 blogs did so. We hope this year it will be far more than that. BUT, DO NOT list on your blog ten blogs you think your readers should vote for. Any duplicate voting of this nature will be disallowed.