2011: Year in review: May

Entertainment

Karis May Darling died in January, just aged 12 but since then the family have been tireless in fund-raising for a community centre in her home town of Corringham. May signalled the beginning of a number of singing and concert engagements.

We found that the well-received royal wedding Vodafone advert was directed by a former William Edwards student David Leighton.

Politics

We enjoy local elections. We have to admit to being “politicalanoraks” (You don’t say!-Ed) and enjoy our ward by ward analysis. It also happens to be very popular with our page views on results day topping 9,000!

The local elections came on May 5th. Labour, after a few arrangements, retained power.

Tory leader, Garry Hague stood down and evangelical councillor Phil Anderson became leader.

SBET MP Stephen Metcalfe continued to promote the cause of small businesses whilst Jackie Doyle Price continued to press for tighter immigration controls.

It was a busy month as a probe was launched after Blackshots councillor Joy Redsell was secretly filmed with property developer John Isabel and a large map of Thurrock laid out on a table. The whole situation led to the councillor not seeking re-election to the planning committee.

Education

Ormiston Park embraced a big batch of kindles.

Grays School received a good interim Ofsted report. Headteacher Lynn Ibeji hoped that this was progress on the path to an “Outstanding” The report that came out in December was seen as a setback for many.

The National Skills Academy laid its first stones at the High House Park in Thurrock.

All the schools had excellent contributors at the Jack Petchey Speak Out challenge

Sport

Chadwell boxers continued to shine as did Belhus CC. Julian Dicks quit Grays Athletic and Hakan Heyrettin moves in.

Crime

You could sense the recession was dipping again by the (seeming) emergence of more burglaries and robberies. You know that the police stats will say differently but there recording mechanisms are a busted flush.

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