Non-job of the week

Many thanks to those of you who sent over your own nominations for this week’s non-job. It’s clear that many of you have been keeping an eye on the jobs sections of your local papers for the sort of ridiculous vacancies we expose each Wednesday. Though the Guardian website has its fair share of “Safer Neighbourhood Development Officer”-type roles and highly paid public sector communications co-ordinators this week, this week’s featured job comes from an observant TPA supporter. Nj7


"Cycling City Project Officer x2
£21,519 - £23,708


This is a temporary post until March 2011, but with a possibility of extension should the project be successful.
This is an exciting opportunity for up to two people with a strong interest in cycling to work in the Cycle Stoke team at Stoke-on-Trent. The Posts holders main responsibilities are to deliver individual projects and activities within the Stoke Cycling City project in line with the agreed Cycling Strategy.
Candidates will be expected to have relevant experience in cycling, road safety, transport, health and environment or similar field in a variety of working environments.
You should demonstrate a track record of successful management of projects and people, and an ability to motivate and develop people. Experience of multi-agency partnership working across the private, public and community sectors would be an advantage. The ideal candidate would possess good organisational skills, be computer literate, prepared to work outside normal working hours, and must demonstrate the drive to achieve results.”


This is confirmation, if ever it was needed, that we have indeed evolved too far. Or at least our councils have. What do residents really want from their local authority? Rubbish collections, a clean locality, street lights, decent infrastructure, perhaps social care and education – but ‘cycling strategy’?? And more, a ‘cycling team’!


This is a council in severe financial difficulties, made worse by their extravagant use of consultants (which they’ve now been advised to curtail).  With redundancies afoot, who’d have thought they’d find the cash for not one, but two publically funded cycling experts? It simply beggars belief.


So if you live in Stoke, put March 2011 in your diary. Ask your council how many more people are cycling (do they even know how many cycle to start with?)? What benefits has this project brought in terms of the number of obese people in the city, and in terms of traffic reduction? And say a handful of locals are persuaded to exchange four wheels for two, just how much will this scheme will have cost per head? We deserve to know because it’s precious public money and it’s coming directly from our pockets.

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