The Tory councillors in the Cabinet at Thurrock Council have backed plans to spend almost £10million on building new offices at the Civic Centre on New Road in Grays: Thurrock Council’s £10 million new offices move a step closer. Regular readers of this blog will be aware that we’ve already expressed our opinions about what in our view, amounts to nothing more than a vanity project: Never mind us plebs, just build yourselves some shiny new offices!

None of you need reminding that we’re in a state of permanent austerity. None of our readers living in Thurrock – or anywhere else in the region we cover – will need reminding that council services are being pared to the bone as a consequence of this. It’s become all too clear that senior council officers and ruling group councillors do not live in the same harsh world as the rest of us mere mortals. Which is why when they come up with grandiose schemes that only serve to enhance their comfort at a time when vital services such as social care are suffering from cut after cut, they seem to think they can get away with it.

How much longer are we going to put up with self serving councillors and senior council officers feathering their own nests. Well, down in Bridgewater in Somerset, it would appear that locals are not going to tolerate the councillors on Sedgemoor District Council awarding themselves a 32% pay rise when services are being slashed to the bone: ‘TIME TO FIGHT BACK’ – ‘Yellow vest’ protests could take to Somerset’s streets over ‘lunatic’ councillor ‘greed’.

A series of weekly protests have been called from Sunday 30th December onwards starting at 10am every morning and will continue until the locals are listened to. They’re at weekends because people have to work. Work to pay for the councillors 32% pay rise through their council tax! That’s how the gilets jaunes protests started off in France with weekend actions in Paris and other major cities because at the start, most of the participants had to work during the week. As we all know the gilets jaunes protests have now escalated to the point where they’re potentially turning into an insurrection.

We don’t want to get ahead of ourselves but isn’t it time people got out on the streets of Essex to protest against our self serving local authorities? Jason Dowle who’s calling the protest in Bridgewater has dubbed it as the new ‘Battle of Sedgemoor’. The Battle of Sedgemoor occurred in the summer of 1685, and was an attempt to seize the crown of England by James Scott, Duke of Monmouth, from his uncle the Catholic King James II. Well to inspire us, we’ve got the Peasants’ Revolt which started in 1381 in amongst other places, the village of Fobbing in the east of Thurrock. That’s something to think about for the New Year…