Social skirmishes

● “Remember the days when we used to break up into groups and shout out all of the names given to genitalia so we could  show that we were not embarrassed” reminisces social work trainer Ray Wyre in an e-mail. Er, no Ray.

He goes on to talk about how seminars would start with long discussions about the rights of smokers to puff all day. Then there was the occasion when a group sat in the dark for hours debating who would change a lightbulb in a non-oppressive way. So the joke about how many social workers does it take to change a light bulb is true – none in this case.

So have you any funny training anecdotes? No prizes but a mention on Backchat for kudos. Send entries to Rosie Warlock.

● Some good has come out of the nationalisation of Northern Rock. The charitable wing of the troubled mortgage lender is to receive government grants worth £15m a year up to 2010 to keep up its good work in the North East. Not quite on the scale of the billions given to private equity funds and shareholders but enough to say that someone in government has a heart.

● Slough has such a bad press, what with Betjeman’s “Come friendly bombs and fall on Slough” and the sit com The Office. Now we learn that the staff who work in the Old Town Hall may soon be moving. It is to be demolished because it devalues the land on which it sits by £2m. If it devalues the land, what must it be like to work inside such a place?

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