Monday, June 29, 2009

British City Council Bans Library Group Over Hot Coffee Fears

Thank God for the Peterborough, England City Council in their never ending fight to keep Peterborough's children safe from danger. It takes real commitment to freedom from harm, danger, and . . . coffee?

According to the London Daily Mail, the Peterborough City Council have banned a seniors group that meets in the Eye Library, in Eye, Cambridgeshire, citing health and safety concerns.

Ah, "health and safety," the mating cry of the mentally stagnant, the dogmatically unenlightened, the cretinously obtuse. There's a reason people make fun of British city councils. It's whenever you do something like this.

This time, the city council is worried that the members of the Over 50s group — a group of seven people — might spill hot coffee on children who use a nearby nursery.

Coffee club member Derek Taylor told the Daily Mail the club members always finish their coffee by the time the little tykes show up at the library for their 30 minute visit.

"It is just laughable really. It is health and safety gone through the roof," Taylor told the Daily Mail. "Nearly four years ago we set up a coffee morning at Eye Library after the librarian at the time came up with the idea, and since then about seven of us have been going there every Tuesday."

Retired office worker Patricia Owen, 70, and her husband Ray, 69, have also been attending the coffee mornings since they were launched.

"We are being told we can't have a hot drink. Health and safety is a silly excuse," Patricia Owen, 70, said.

The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents has basically called for the Petersborough Council to pull its head out of its bureaucracy.

"While the last thing anyone would want is a toddler getting scalded, risk assessments shouldn't only be based on hazards," said Carl Christopher, spokesman for the RSCPOA. "They should also be based on the probability of these hazards occurring. This would seem to be a disproportionate reaction to risk. I'm sure a sensible compromise could be found that does not leave these pensioners on the streets."

You can find more — many more — stories about British Health and Safety stupidity concerns here:



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