SENTINEL: Pilgrim Hospital, dog attack, Quadrant, Newark by-election


The Standard’s Sentinel columnist offers his weekly take on events in and around the borough...

* Sentinel was very worried to read the report about the trust in charge of Boston’s Pilgrim Hospital needing a £26.4 million bail-out as a result of over spend. The majority of this was £24.5 million on new doctors and nurses after being placed in ‘special measures’ by minister Jeremy Hunt. Now, I don’t know exactly how many new doctors and nurses that figure buys you - but I would imagine a fair few. Sentinel finds this extremely worrying, as it would suggest before this spend some of the sites run by United Lincolnshire Hospitals Trust were deeply understaffed. We hear, and through The Standard’s letters’ pages read, about the dedication and hard work shown by lots of staff at the Pilgirm - let’s hope they get the support they need to perform their roles to the best of their abilities - the extra doctors and nurses should have helped.

* Sentinel would like to see those who came to the aid of a woman who was walking her pet when it was savagely attacked by another dog properly rewarded. The main ‘rescuer’ was an 80-year-old man who suffered bad injuries - including a suspected fractured arm. I know he has been modest about his action and instinct may well have taken over, but he certainly deserves some form of official recognition. Well done that man.

* The group opposed to the Quadrant development (which includes a new ground for Boston United, 500 homes and road etc) in Wyberton has reported to police that campaign material has been damaged. Sentinel would just like to ask the question: why? What possess someone to do such a thing? If you feel that passionately and want the development to go ahead, then make your own posters - don’t go wrecking other peoples’ efforts. Everyone is entitled to a view, whether you agree with it or not. I know the Boston Standard doesn’t always agree with the views of the people featured in the paper, but to quote Voltaire: “I do not agree with what you have to say, but I’ll defend to the death your right to say it.”

* Sentinel also notes the result of the Newark by-election - with the Conservatives keeping hold of the seat. UKIP and Roger Helmer claimed second spot in the polls, pushing Labour into third. Speculation is already rife as to whether Mr Helmer might fancy his chances in Boston in a year’s time - with party leader Nigel Farage this week telling The Standard that this seat is a key target. So far there has been no indication either we wait to see.

* On a final note, congratulations to the Boston Standard team on being Highly Commended in the News Website of the Year category at the Midlands Media Awards last night (Thursday). Sentinel is proud to write for such a well-regarded website!