Letters from Emile


The price of happiness

Some things never change, whether it’s politicians and their plans, the two islands disagreeing over the inter-island ferry service or talk of lengthening the runway. At least there’s a new statue of Victor Hugo to look forward to, as Neil Ross’s Emile writes to his cousin Eugene

Will this year be any different?

‘They’re saying Mont Cuet will be full by the end of next year, mon viaer.’ (Picture by Tom Tardif, 17281589)

There’s confusion over Brexit and predictions about global warming, while the cost of the waste strategy continues to escalate. Neil Ross’s Emile wonders if the powers that be are living on the same island, or even planet, in his letter to his cousin Eugene…

Safety and numbers


They’d started so they had to finish the Salerie cycle path job. But why didn’t Environment get the ‘audit’ and ‘afford it’ the right way round, wonders Neil Ross’ Emile

Looking to the Future Plan

Was it really necessary for the work at Salerie Corner to take so long and cost so much? (Picture by Steve Sarre, 16691071)

Planning for the future is all well and good, says Neil Ross’s Emile, but he’d much rather the States looked at the problems facing the island now before debating what’s yet to come

Bring on the permanent sunshine

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Strawberry fields at the roundabout and a yellow submarine in the harbour. Welcome to Guernsey in 20 years’ time, says Neil Ross’ Emile...

What’s with all these chinks in our links?

The good old days, when you didn’t need a website to tell you if the ferry was running on time...

Back in the days when cousin Eugene lived on home turf, you could rock up at the airport, hop on the scales and be in Jersey half an hour or so later. In his monthly missive, Neil Ross’ Emile explains why that or any kind of nippy travel is increasingly elusive these days...

Seeds of change


The bid to move the war memorial and replace the sunken gardens is just one of the stories Neil Ross’ Emile is sharing with his cousin about this month, as he and his old friends reminisce about Guernsey then and now

No end to piers plans

Guernsey Harbours’ plan to offer a commercial partner the chance to redevelop the restaurant and marina facilities on the Crown Pier is a hot topic of discussion for Emile and his friends. (Picture by Adrian Miller, 15186172)

With the new Assembly’s first States meeting under its belt, Eugene will be up to date with the latest comings and goings thanks to his monthly letter from his cousin. And there has been plenty of talk about the latest plans for the Crown Pier among the lads, as Neil Ross’s Emile reveals

Back in with the old...

Newly-appointed president of the Policy and Resources Committee Gavin St Pier. (Picture by Adrian Miller, 14875324)

...after a close-fought vote for the top job, as Neil Ross’s Emile explains to his cousin. And there is much for him to write about – not least an election, the slow forming of a ‘new’ government and the latest crime figures from the head of law enforcement

Park and ride


The new States are going to have to sort out the transport links, that’s for sure, says Neil Ross’s Emile. After all, the present lot were supposed to put in a transport strategy, but look what’s happened. We’ve ended up with a short runway, an unreliable ferry and a toy train going round Town...

States like a beached turtle – at loggerheads

Amendments, sursis and suggestions flying all over the place – Jack said the education debate reminded him of the Battle of Flowers in the old days. (1013884)

There were amendments and sursis flying all over the place and it reminded him of the Battle of Flowers of many years ago, but as Neil Ross writes in his Letter from Emile, this States has a habit of making things up as it goes along

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Neil Ross’ Emile has had his calculator out and it’s telling him some worrying things. Over its four-year term, he calculates, this States has lost an average of about £2.5m. every year by getting things wrong. ‘I bet they don’t put that in their manifestos,’ he tells cousin Eugene...

Bring on the plastic palm trees

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Once a year he gets out the old crystal ball and gives it a good polish. And what Neil Ross’ Emile sees for 2016 puts the island right up in the forefront of ‘visitor experiences’ – but it’s bad news for ormer trawlers...

Plugging the gaps

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With Environment dead set on leaving the L’Ancresse anti-tank wall to crumble, Neil Ross’s Emile is sure he’s found a way to help fill the gaps and find a new home for some unwanted items at the same time. But with Treasury looking to import people to plug its funding hole and the States making cuts as the civil service grows, his cousin has plenty to digest in this month’s letter

Carried away by the UK

Peewee cartoon for Emile about paying for carrier bags.

A trip to Town has irked Neil Ross’s Emile, who discovered that UK chains are forcing their carrier bag fees on islanders. And as he explains to his cousin, it’s not the only aspect of Guernsey life that’s influenced by the mainland. Sunday trading has now been voted in, but there are lots of resulting issues that haven’t been thought through...

A matter of understanding


With so many big issues before the States, and a few of them controversial, Neil Ross’s Emile has plenty to tell his cousin Eugene. From education to Condor, the Leopardess to our relationships with other places – it’s all about money and ‘understandings’

Stealth, wealth and a deliberate rain dance

Emile cartoon Sept

The schools are back and we’re into September. Time for everything to get back to normal after the summer. Trouble is, as Neil Ross’s Emile tells his cousin Eugene, what with the harbours and Environment and the money that’s left going round in circles, he’s not too sure what normal is any more...

The black and the white of dredging all over

Emile cartoon July

Back-patting, pontoons and an eye-popping ‘poo pipe’ – plus a bit of hobnobbing. Neil Ross’ Emile has plenty to tell his cousin Eugene this month – and some of it, he reckons, takes the biscuit

A model example...

Emile cartoon May

The architects of the new Town plans claim their models worked, but Neil Ross’s Emile isn’t so sure... although he’s certain there was plenty of Lego involved

‘Sarnian spring’ gets hit by fog

Emile cartoon April

The States are spending madly on ‘improvements’ we don’t want, inventing new taxes to pay for them and complaining about being £50m. short of funds they never had in the first place. No wonder people are leaving the island, says Neil Ross’ Emile

Whatever happened to the Sarnian Spring?

Peewee cartoon for Neil Ross column Letter from Emile.

Neil Ross’s Emile has so much to tell his cousin, it’s hard to know where to start – between the toing and froing of the traffic strategy, the fears over importing food, closing the Albert Pier and a single-lane Quay, Eugene’s going to wonder what’s going on in Guernsey…