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DAMESATHOME@YAHOO.CO.UK
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Friday, 30 May 2014

A READER PRAISES CLLR BLAKEMAN

The Dame wishes more of her readers would write to her on topical issues.

The Dame is happy to publish this email from Justin Downes....











Dear Dame 

I have been following Private Eye's coverage of the 'teething troubles' associated with the Tri-Borough appointment of Olympic South Ltd(OSL)to transport vulnerable children with special needs.
For years, a local firm, Crystals, held the contract and they discharged their duties with care, efficiency and economy.

But, surprisingly Crystals, were booted out and refused the opportunity to tender. 
Instead, the contract was handed to OSL.

In the latest issue of the Eye we read that in 2010 Croydon handed a £5.2 million contract to OSL, but, embarrassingly, were forced to cancel the contract after discovering the officer involved in the appointment, Michael Lawrence, had subsequently joined OSL! 

Bad move on the part of OSL....the contract had to be torn up!

But, my point in writing is to refer to my own experience as a councillor.

Many years ago I was a member of Somerset County Council. 
In those far off days( yes, I am as old as the Dame) the idiotic Cabinet system did not exist.
Instead, the Council leader was able to draw upon a whole gamut of skills. 
One would find that the Conservative leader of the Council( in this case, the admirable George Wyndham) would appoint a councillor solely because he or she had a set of skills relevant to the committee function. 
Wyndham cared not a jot for the political affiliations of the appointee: his only criteria was their competence.

So it's embarrassing to see Cllr Elizabeth Campbell helplessly flailing around attempting to sort out the mess created by OSL. 
Clearly she is quite out of her depth.

On the other hand it is refreshing to see Cllr Blakeman ferociously and forensically holding the hapless Andrew Christie to account.

Well done, Cllr Blakeman. 
From what I understand many Conservative councillors are four square behind you.

A thing we can be certain of....the late Shireen Ritchie would never have allowed the vulnerable of K&C to be so put at risk..

Regards


Justin Downes

27 comments:

  1. It must a news event if cllr blakeman gets praise

    ReplyDelete
  2. Cllr Blskeman is most definitely holding Christie et al to account, interestingly the only person who is not is Cllr Campbell who is supposedly the lead for children and families services. Senior officers interpretations that the issues faced by extremely vulnerable children and their parents were teething problems is outrageous. If parents had put children through this there would have been a child protection investigation. Cllr Blakeman is doing her job and doing it well. Campbell's reaction is to do nothing but listen to the sweet whispers of officers. Thoroughly shameful.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Fly On The Wall31 May 2014 at 19:54

      Campbell is a useless Councillor. Long ago her husband took away her cheque book and credit cards. The only way that the family finances can survive is if the silly woman is given a cash allowance every week.

      Delete
    2. Financial ineptitude rampant amongst K&C Tory circles? Who would have known it!

      Delete
  3. Campbell should resign or be removed and Christie should be sacked. Christie is presiding over a regime that is getting rid of all RBKC staff and replacing them with staff from Hammersmith. There is a rumour in Hornton street that in a staff survey 60% of staff say they are being bullied and harassed. Can someone let us have a copy of the survey. Is it also true that the Chief Executive is taking a personal interest in staff matters. The standards set by officers who have now left or being forced out are being eroded on a daily basis, I worked for RBKC when standards mattered, the current regime cares neither about standards or the most vulnerable as the transport fiasco has demonstrated. Councillor Blakeman is holding officers to account but she does not have the numbers in the Council Chamber so let's give her the support she needs. Dame much is happening in Hornton street please follow this up.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Having 60% of staff responding to an employee survey report being bullied or harassed must be some kind of record for any organisation, let alone a local authority.

      And probably not the kind of "mark" the newly installed leadership was eager to make.

      The Tri-borough experiment is clearly a disaster in the making and the decline in services that it has produced is not worth £100 of anyone's Council tax.

      Delete
  4. RBK&C is not a meritocracy and Cllr. Campbell is one of the most obvious examples - completely out of her depth and the residents suffer as a result.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Kensington Tory (only just)31 May 2014 at 19:52

    Labour now has 12 Councillors - high time to get an effective opposition underway. Cllr Blakeman is quite right to probe into the hopeless mess that the useless Cllr Campbell presides over. This is the soft underbelly of complacent K&C Tories

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. RBKC Labour will never offer any credible opposition under the Leadership of Cllr Blakeman.
      She is too fond of sucking up to the Tories.

      Delete
    2. That's as may be 23.32, but once Cllr Blakeman gets her teeth into this type of issue, she is relentless and indomitable. We can't stand by while vulnerable children are experiencing what can only be called abuse; Blakeman is doing the detail on this, and it is awesome to behold.

      Delete
    3. 23:32 is talking rubbish Councillor Blakeman has helped many disadvantaged and vulnerable families, the transport fiasco is but one example. So before you bleat get your facts right.

      Delete
  6. Time for Cllr Paget-Brown to shuffle his Cabinet and get rid of the dead wood and free loaders and glue sniffers.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. North Kensington Resident31 May 2014 at 21:41

      Cracking good suggestion

      Delete
    2. Sadly there's plenty of dead wood, freeloaders and glue sniffers strewn around the back benches as well (the party's current selection process has much to answer for). The leader has his job cut out selecting new cabinet members from amongst that lot!

      Delete
    3. Cracking or Fracking? I know there are pipes involved ...

      Delete
    4. As we know they REALLY struggled to get candidates this time round, let alone decent candidates. Time will tell if any of them are any good, but the signs ain't good.

      Blakeman, however, seems to have attracted a very interesting field.

      Delete
    5. Quality begets quality.

      (Now apply to the local Tory party ... oh dear!)

      Delete
  7. Does anyone know when Cllr Blakeman is meant to be handing over the leadership of the Labour group?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "handing over"...more like being told to go as she is passed it.

      The Bent Toad is about to install her Stalinist regime. Which is quite amusing as Stalins daughter used to live in North Kensington as a political refugee from that same regime.

      Delete
    2. 13:17 do you mean past or is your comment the rant of an uneducated idiot.

      Delete
    3. Someone's forgotten their meds again ...

      Luckily I hear there are some very good private practices in Queens Gate.

      Delete
  8. It's interesting that some twits commenting in this post would rather comment on Cllr Blakeman personally instead of the work she is doing to sort this mess out, trying get to the truth which clearly councillors from all parties are not being told. And support the most vulnerable children and parents in RBKC. The silence from the councillor who was at the helm of this mess is deafening.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Pointing out that Cllr Blakeman has an appalling record of colluding with the RBKC Tories is not attacking her personally it is merely a statement of fact.
      It is Blakeman who actually delights in launching personal and vindictive attacks on anyone she feels has had the temerity to oppose her.
      The sooner Blakeman moves on (as she has previously stated she intends to do) then the sooner some dignity can be returned to RBKC Labour.

      Delete
  9. Councillor Blakeman has held officers to account in pursuing a resolution to the transport fiasco, others with responsibility have not even bothered. The failure of the ruling party to act is not surprising when you look back at how 67 year old Elaine McDonald was treated. This is about money and in RBKC aka Hammersmith and Fulham money trumps dignity and humanity.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well 16.35, sadly there are far worse cases than that of Elaine McDonald, though that was bad enough. If families don't want press intrusion for what has happened to their vulnerable loved ones, we may never hear. One particular case would make even Dotty Campbell weep. Officers were, and still are, terrified the story would get out.

      Delete
    2. If they're so terrified that the story would get out they should have ensured the right thing was done and the right outcome secured at the time, rather than shed what are little more than crocodile tears later.

      Delete
  10. 22.11 and 16.35 are both correct in their respective views on Cllr Blakeman's record. While her current campaign is very welcome, it's very long overdue. One may perhaps deduce she's been forced into belated action by her close political allies.

    ReplyDelete

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