Avoidance

Avoidance or Evasions and Denials has grown to about 60 items where mostly the question of height has been ignored  and latterly it has become the most important document held on this site. It would be extremely difficult to maintain if each entry was to contain a cross reference but odd pieces which had little relevance when they were first made but gain in significance as time marches on but first:-

There was never any need to put in an FoI for any approved drawings because there was one available in the public domain (8296/14) from mid-December 2013 and another from 1996 (8296/2), sent to me by the Planning Manager on the 28th January 2014. Either one can be used to close the argument about which end of the shed has a planned height of 15.5m and it is the river end.

It was not until the Monitoring Officer kept repeating in 2020: “It remains the case that all complaints procedures relating to this matter have been exhausted both internally within the Council and externally.”  that I searched for the earliest reference to exhaust a complaint. Note that the Monitoring Officer had ignored much of what I had reported to her 5 days before.
Like the First Inspector for the Local Government Ombudsman it appears that her Manager has determined that she suspend reason before making her response.

The use of PROTECT is to warn others in the Council that the author is not being straightforward, and it occurred quite frequently, for example:

Subject: RE: Application ST/0461/14/FUL - 2nd Slipway Cover and Offices [PROTECT]
From: "Customer Advocates"
Date: Thu, March 12, 2015 12:19 pm
To: "mick.dawson@theharbourview.co.uk"
This email has been classified as: PROTECT

Dear Mr Dawson
Your email to Mr Atkinson has been forwarded to our team as your complaint on this matter has exhausted the Council’s complaints procedure and is now with the Local Government Ombudsman’s office.

The complaint with the Ombudsman was STC Ref: 253539 was created at the instigation of the Head of Development Services because the complaint Ref: 248789, had exhausted the complaints procedure as the Planning Manager had conceded to our view that the shed was 3m taller than planned, 13-Feb-14 .

Alison’s response enabled Mr Atkinson kill off FBR – 266782 and re-establish two falsehoods at the same time: i) that 8296/1A was approved and ii) that 8296/14 was drawn after the frame went up.

The ‘3rd’ Stage Response, the one presented to the Ombudsman as evidence that my claim that the the shed is taller than permitted is false, fails to mention the height of the shed altogether.  As one can see the Planning Manager needed to deliberately kill off 266782 which he did with Alison’s help.

We have received the Ombudsman’s draft decision on your complaint and if you feel there is anything you raised with the investigator which has not been addressed by them, you should contact them directly as the Ombudsman base their investigation on the issues you raise with their office.

I had already written to them saying that they had ignored the extra height built into the shed but it was totally ignored because the Council contradicted me by lying about the height and to do that they had to claim that 8296/1A was approved when it was not.
In her summary the Ombudsman was to say a month later: “There is no fault in how the Council decided the shed is the permitted height”

They have asked for any comments on the decision to reach them by 30 March 2015.

kind regards
Alison Hoy
Performance and Information Support Officer
Customer Advocates Team
South Tyneside Council

Application ST/0461/14/FUL referred to the expansion of the site to include offices a second shed and  a lengthening of the first shed etc.

Oh, what a tangled web we weave, when first we practice to deceive!’

Planning Issues in South Shields