Category Archives: UK Docks

Shed and Corruption – Part 17, 29-Jul-22

Messrs Buck and Palmer

Hopefully this will be the last part in the series though I fear that whoever is in control of South Tyneside Council are secure in the knowledge that the police will not prosecute them and they have plenty of backers to make civil action prohibitively expensive for anybody to take civil action against them so they can sit behind that protective wall and continue to back UK Docks’ claim that they had approval for their shed.

They did not and anyone can judge for themselves by looking at the approved drawing from 1996  which gave the height at the frame at the landward end in September 2013 of 12.7m and comparing it with the built height at that section. It is 15.5m.

When Mr Buck contacted me on the 8th January 2020, I was suspicious because I had already established contact with the MP for South Shields office a few years before, when I had returned to live in South Shields to try and sell 70 Greens Place. I had been corresponding with Rebecca Heath (nee Atkinson) who was her Office Manager since at least October 2016 and while I remember calling in the Office on Westoe Rd, I think we had missed each other.

There was never any need to use the phone but after reviewing my latest correspondence with her, the MP, I thought it worth the risk and gave Simon Buck my personal details and stated that he should use email he wanted to talk about corruption at the Town Hall, UK Docks etc. and waited in for much of Thursday the 9th and then gave up but a few days later noticed that I had received a call from Mr Palmer, 01914271240, and retuned it on the 13th January only that his agenda was very different to the conditions I had set.

Mr Palmer made it very clear that the shed and the corruption surrounding it was the last thing he wished to discuss and that I had been conned by Mr Buck into talking about such serious matters over the phone. Mr Palmer was not interested in corruption at the Town Hall and told me that any further correspondence with Emma would get no response, being filed away under the label of vexatious mail. It took a few hours to compose a response, 13-Jan-20, and took I the trouble to send her a copy of the advice I had sought from an independent solicitor because one of Mr Palmer’s suggestions was that I consult a solicitor and said:-

What I really needed from you was your support and Mr Palmer has indicated by our exchange over the phone that he is not prepared to give it. At the end of the day the Council are misusing the Ombudsman’s Office to hide malpractice then use their findings to deflect any enquirers after the truth.

I had copied the email to Mr Palmer, not Mr Buck but rather the Ward Councillors and this was deliberate because it was obvious from what he was saying over the phone that he was acting on behalf of UK Docks and the Council. I cooled down overnight and wrote a much more reasoned response for her in the morning and copied the Monitoring Officer, Nicola Robeson and the Head of Legal Services to broadcast my message to a wider audience. I had seen the way things were going with the Ombudsman and had written to the MP for South Shields on March 31st 2015 and she gave it the case number:“The case ZA4803, please see attached, and it has been with you for many years although it was passed to Anne Marie Trevelyan MP while I was lodging in Amble.

Like the email of the 13th, the one to Emma the following day, appears to have been removed from her inbox  and confirms my suspicion that Mr Palmer had been planted to destroy her reputation. As I said Mr Palmer had a different agenda and I while I included him in the list of people copied I deliberately excluded My Buck and yet it was he who replied and let me go through his email to me of the 14th January 2020, point by point:-

Dear Mr Dawson, Thank you
for your email sent this morning following from Mr Palmer’s
telephone conversation to you yesterday afternoon.

What happened to the email of the 13th with the copy of the
letter from Peter Dunn and Co attached? Did Emma ever see it?

I wish to address two points you raised. I was present during the conversation between Mr Palmer and yourself. I am afraid your recollection of the conversation was not a true account. Mr Palmer was polite, informative and accurate

The implication being I that I was offensive and inaccurate but I’ll
let others decide by examining the contents of both emails for
themselves. In particular:-

I understood from Mr Palmer that this was no longer a matter for
Parliament but I think it is. Only Parliament can make it a
criminal offence to lie to the Ombudsman. I have attached a copy
of the letter from my Solicitor for Mr Palmer’s perusal and he
would do well to read the email to Customer Advocacy 03 September
2016 at the foot of the trail below.

I gave my phone details to you partner to pass to a Mr Keith
Parmer, he has them and I spoke to him yesterday on 0191 4271240.
Is it safe to assume he is your Office Manager in South Shields
and we should write to him on any issues we have with UK Docks?

Mr Palmer correctly informed you that MPs have no influence over the Local Government Ombudsman,

I have no argument with that but what were Messrs Buck and Palmer
implying by stating something so obvious. To late to get some
clarification but it appears to be made as a renunciation of the
letter from Peter Dunn and Co – see next line.

and he suggested that a possible course of action may be to complain further to the Local Government Ombudsman and suggested you take legal advice.

I had already taken legal advice and it is worth repeating:- What
happened to the copy of the advice from Peter Dunn and Co? It was
sent to Emma and Mr Buck writes as if he had no knowledge of its
existence. Mr Palmer was advised to take notice of it and also an
email where I advised Customer Advocacy of its existence.

Finally, your suggestion that Mr Palmer, or any other staff member for that matter has been “warned off helping” Emma “by an official at the
Town Hall” and then making references to the CLP trying to
deselect Emma, is not only untrue but an unwarranted accusation.

Mr Buck has selectively lifted that from my email of the 13th, which
he failed to acknowledge, my interpretation of the ‘news’
coming out of South Shield in late 2019 was that some the CLP were
acting against you and you were saved by Parliament calling the
‘Get Brexit Done’ election.

Your email seriously undermines Mr Palmer’s, Emma’s and the Office’s integrity and it is a very serious matter. I am very sorry that Emma is unable to help you further with this case and I consider this matter to be

Mr Buck may well of wished for the matter to be closed but so did the
Planning Officers when faced with evidence that UK Docks’
shed was taller than planned.

Simon Buck, Office Manager for the Office of Emma Lewell-Buck MP

Those who have seen the earlier version of the table will notice the change from second to third person. The earlier version was attached to a personal email to Emma. This version is for broadcasting to all interested parties. * The table is a criticism of Mr Buck’ response to a complaint about Mr Palmer and was hurriedly written before Parliament closed on 21st July.

The email of the 13th January not about Mr Buck and that was why he was not copied into it. It was in detail, a complaint about Mr Palmer directly to the MP:- What I really needed from you was your support and Mr Palmer has indicated by our exchange over the phone that he is not prepared to give it. At the end of the day the Council are misusing the Ombudsman’s Office to hide malpractice then use their findings to deflect any enquirers after the truth.


Mr Buck, by directly addressing my email of the 14th January, had to all intents and purposes, deleted my complaint to Emma about the conduct of Mr Palmer i.e. the email of the 13th and in this he was mimicking the action taken by the Planning Manager, Mr Atkinson, six years earlier when he referred to escalation of a complaint rather than the complaint itself.

Mr Atkinson was duplicitous. While he was admitting to us that the shed was taller than planned by reference to 8296/14 he later agreed something different with his manager, Mr Mansbridge. The truth about the shed being taller than planed was replaced with a different story i.e. with the lie that the shed had been approved.

Similarly with Mr Palmer’s response on the phone, I had expressed on the 13th what I thought were his short comings to Emma and included a copy of the letter from Peter Dunn and Co to drive the point home but between them Messrs Buck and Palmer overwrote my complaint about Mr Palmer’s conduct with their own version.

In my email 14th to Emma I said:-

Dear Emma,
I gave my phone details to you partner to pass to a Mr Keith Parmer, he has them and I spoke to him yesterday on 0191 4271240. Is it safe to assume he is your Office Manager in South Shields and we should write to him on any issues we have with UK Docks?

The case ZA4803, please see attached, and it has been with you for many years although it was passed to Anne Marie Trevelyan MP while I was lodging in Amble. 70 Greens Place was on the market for about 4 years and I did not sell it until 2019. I was resident back there when UK Docks extended their shed in August 2017. I complained to you about the conduct of Councillor Anglin at that time and you suggested that I take it up with the Monitoring Officer, Mike Harding, and although I have not raised that issue with him I have discovered that he does not even acknowledge the receipt of any letters or emails let alone go any way to resolving any of the issues raised. I discovered this when I tried to raise a similar complaint with him at the back end of 2018.

Nicola Robeson does respond and she has confirmed that UK Docks were not given permission for their shed retrospectively which makes one wonder why they told you and Angela that they had.

It only confirms that a call was made on the 13th January 2020. The rest is a potted history of our complaint that the shed is taller than planned. When Mr Buck responded to these two emails on the 15th January it would appear that the complaint about Mr Palmer’s conduct had been removed and different story put in it place.

I had become well acquainted with the manipulation of the complaints procedure for their own ends by South Tyneside Council and wrote told Mr Buck about it, 15-Jan-20, and I can confirm that he did not clarify who was or was not the office manager in South Shields.

It was copied to some of those whom I thought had been manipulating the Councils Complaints Procedure in the favour of UK Docks over the years:-

When you consider the matter closed, do you mean that the Council can cover up wrongdoing by misleading the Ombudsman is OK? Do you think it OK that they can then use the Ombudsman’s findings to mislead MPs and other enquirers. Mr Palmer certainly gave me that impression he was implying that over the phone. As you can see from the third attachment the Council have been dishonest with everyone for a long time.


When you consider the matter closed you are only repeating what the Principal Planning Manager said on January 13th 2014 and in the six years the Council have consistently lied about the shed having been approved.
By the way Nicola Robason has confirmed that UK Docks did not put in a retrospective planning request which beggars the question: Why did they tell Angela and Emma that they had.
Perhaps your Mr Palmer can answer the question?

I was pushing it a bit by saying ‘your’ but I saw that Mr Buck had been used by Mr Palmer in an attempt to close the conversation thread between Emma as my former MP, the Council and those who were aware the shed was materially bigger than the one permitted and I challenged him about it, 23rd January 2020:-

Dear Mr Palmer, You seem to have done some homework before our phone call on Monday the 13th but if you had paid attention to the facts rather than opinions based on fraudulent misrepresentations you would have come to the conclusion that UK Dock’s shed is 3 meters taller than planned. This can be confirmed by examination of the authorised drawing 8296/2.

Following the exchange of emails 13th to 15th January it appeared that some software had been put into to ensure that any emails from me@theharbourview bounced but I noticed that my email to Mr Palmer of the 23rd did not bounce and I wrote to Mr Buck:- Dear Simon, I notice that my email to Keith yesterday did not bounce from Emma’s mailbox at Thank you for removing the block from mick.dawson at the harbourview. When he alluded to vexatious mail I assumed he had his ear bent by someone at the Town Hall . . . .

In brief then, in the days immediately following my call to 0191 427 1240 my emails to Emma’s Office were being diverted into a bin marked Vexatious Mail to suit Mr Palmer’s requirements but by the 24th January normal service had been restored and that included my email to Mr Palmer on the 23rd which was never answered.

For seven years South Tyneside Council had hidden the fact that UK Docks was 2.7m taller than planned, firstly by lying to the local residents then giving misinformation to the Ombudsman and the MPs involved, then finally Mr Palmer hinting that was not Planning and Building Control but Emma and I who were conspiring to influence the Ombudsman and I chose some good examples to prove Messrs Buck and Palmer wrong and wrote to Mr Palmer on the 20th February 2020 and while my link to the MP was closed down again I did got an out of office reply from him.

Automatic reply: Conduct of South Tyneside Council
From: PALMER, Keith
Date: 20/02/2020 (12:06:30 BST)
I am out of the office until Monday 24th February 2020.

From the various responses one could see that normal service had not been restored and I thought to remind Mr Buck of this, on the 24th February, and took the opportunity to show him how the office of the Local Government Ombudsman had been abused by South Tyneside Council by some in their Planning Office with reference to approved drawings of UK Docks’ shed and added:- I wrote to you on the 24th January thanking you for removing the block from mick dawson at so that my copy to Emma did not bounce from her mailbox at I notice that it has been reinstated, 20-Feb-20 and it is likely she will not have seen the email nor the two attachments, ‘Destroying Evidence’ and ‘Dishonesty at the Town Hall’.


I have not attached them to this email to you as Mr Parker will be able to forward a copy of my email and attachments to both you and Emma when he returns to work today the 24th.

The significance approved drawing 8296/2 cannot be underestimated and I took the opportunity of broadcasting this to Keith Palmer, Emma Lewell-Buck MP, Cllr Angela Hamilton, Cllr David Francis, Nicola Robason, Stuart Wright, George Mansbridge, Hayley Johnson along with an explanation of the main lie told the about the shed’s height told to the Ombudsman, paragraph 34 findings 15-Apr-15:- “This developer applied for a shed 15.5 metres high at the land end. The Tyne and Wear Development Corporation as planning authority approved this.

The fact that the shed was 2.7m taller than planned was being hidden and an hour later I receive a threat from Mr Buck which shows my email of the 15th January had been completely ignored.

Mr Buck was so desperate to hide the fact that he, presumably under Mr Palmer’s guidance had been manipulating the flow of email into an MP’s office that he misapplies the Parliamentary code, overlooking the fact that I do not work in or around Parliament and I do not have a email while both he and Mr Palmer do have them.

I have since discovered that the addresses are not all allocated centrally but they can be allocated locally i.e. an MP’s Office and it looks like Mr Palmer’s had been given him by Mr Buck.

It was clear to me in the first few minutes of my call to Mr Palmer in the office on Westoe Road in January 2020 that he was not working in Emma’s interests, nor in Mr Buck’s, now that I think about it, and it must of dawned on Mr Buck after my letter of the 15th January that he ought to set things right with the communications between myself and his office and they were fine until I sent Mr Palmer the two documents on the 20th February:- Dishonesty at Town Hall -Emma30Oct19.pdf and Destroying Evidence.pdf.

I believe it did not suit those who wish to hide bad planning decisions and the wanton lack of building control in allowing the shed to remain, nor whoever was controlling Mr Palmer but somehow Mr Buck was persuaded into writing on the 26th February:-

Thank you for your recent emails. However, I must draw your attention to your continued vexatious, slanderous and personal attacks on a valued member of staff working from the Office of Emma Lewell-Buck MP. Staff employed by Members of Parliament are protected under the Parliamentary Behaviour Code which is put in place to ensure a safe working environment and to safeguard them from bullying and harassment.

One phone call hardly constitutes a continued vexatious, slanderous and personal attack and Mr Buck misuse of the Parliamentary Behaviour Code, reminded me more than anything of the misapplication of the Council’s own Staff Code by the Council when they did not want to admit that they had been giving misinformation to the Local Government Ombudsman.

I only gave permission for my home phone number to be given to Mr Palmer on condition that he wished to talk about the shed and corruption and one phone call , made on 13th January 2020, does not constitute a continuous, vexatious, slanderous and personal attack.

Similarly one complaint to the Chief Executive about his staff giving misinformation to the Ombudsman and I had been told in 2016 by the Council’s Corporate Lead:- In my view, your behaviour is a disproportionate use of resources and unreasonable because you have:


1. submitted repeated complaints, essentially regarding the same issue, after our complaints process has been exhausted,
2. attempted to have the complaint reconsidered in ways that are incompatible with our adopted complaints procedure, or with good practice,
3. adopted a ‘scattergun’ approach: pursuing a complaint or complaints with the authority and, at the same time, with a Member of Parliament/a councillor/independent auditor/the Standards Board/local police/solicitors, while an appropriate avenue is available via the Local Government Ombudsman,
4. refused to accept the decision of the Council or Local Government Ombudsman, by arguing points of detail.
Hayley Johnson, 1st August 2016

She added a threat: I now consider this matter closed. Should you continue to repeat historic complaint issues in your contacts, we will consider imposing formal restrictions on your contact with the Council.

I naturally pointed out the flaws in her argument and copied it to Customer Advocacy complaining about Mrs Johnson’s misrepresentation of the facts but neither she nor Customer Advocacy answered it because South Tyneside Council wished to hide the truth about the shed.

They, that is Ms Abbott and Ms Hoy, continue to hide the truth about the shed with a refined version of the Corporate Lead’s excuse for inaction and note “after our complaints process has been exhausted” has been dropped: –

  • persistent refusal to accept a decision; persistent refusal to accept explanations;

  • continuing to contact us without presenting new and relevant information

  • Adopting a ‘scattergun’ approach: pursuing a complaint or complaints with the authority and, at the same time, with a Member of Parliament/a councillor/ independent auditor/the Standards Board/local police/solicitors/the Local Government Ombudsman/the press

Paula Abbott, 29 th April 2021
Alison Hoy, 29th April 2022 

It is entirely reasonable to refuse decisions and explanations based on misinformation and especially a fraudulent misrepresentation and to say that attempts to correct any item of misinformation is repetitive and irrelevant is intended to hide the truth. What Paula and Alison call a scattergun approach, I call a broadcast and the reason for it is twofold:-

  1. to allow those who accused of misconduct, to correct a false claim;

  2. it is safe to assume the claims made in the broadcast are reasonable if there is no response from those accused of misconduct.

My email of the 13th January 2020 addressed to the MP for South Shields and copied to Mr Palmer seems to have suffered a similar fate to my email to Planning Enquiries sent on 10th January 2014, neither being answered and now deleted or overwritten, much like your question, asked of the Principal Planning Officer, Mr Cunningham, on the 9th September 2013:- “Has the revised height of 15.5metres been approved or is it in breach of the 1996 Planning approval?

The shed still in breach in respect of height of the permission granted in 1996.

Mick Dawson
29 July 2022

UKD Sundays

UKDocks – Sunday Working

The Second Condition states: The development to which
this permission relates shall be carried out in complete accordance
with the approved plans and specifications

The basic reason for the existence of the Website the is because, the development or shed to which that condition applies, is nearly 3m taller than planned and the Council have done nothing but lie or stifle any talk about its height since the first frames were put up in September 2013.

Think of a builder adding an extra floor to a four story block of flats and you will get the picture of the deviation from the approved plan.

UK Docks got away with the breach of the 2nd condition by giving plans, to the planning officer responsible, that falsely supported their claim that they had approval for it but it contained a fundamental error. When this error was pointed out to the Council, the planning officer switched to a plan retrieved from the Council’s archive which bore the same fault
This eventually led South Tyneside Council giving misinformation to
the Local Government Ombudsman by a Senior Planning Officer of South Tyneside Council.

The second condition has been quoted and explained because it
follows that the shed ought not to be used until it is met. There
were numerous complaints while the shed was under construction,
September 2013 to June 2014, about this but they were ignored or
worse. They were contradicted.

The fifth condition states: 5. No works, other than the launching or beaching of vessels, shall take place within the shelter between the hours of 7pm and 7am Monday to Saturday and not at all on Sundays or Bank Holidays unless any written consent of variation is previously given by the Development Corporation as local planning authority.

When the Council received complaints about the breaches of the fifth condition they were dismissed as allegations even when confronted photographic evidence:

Sunday Working – 18 December 2016 at 08:33

In Detail:-
When UK Docks applied to build an enclosure (shed) covering the slipway off River Drive the Tyne and Wear Development Corporation (the Authority) laid down 2 conditions in such a manner as to restrict any expansion of the business being carried out at the time of the application (1996).

The fifth condition still applies regardless of whether the shed had been built with, or without permission, and will do so until UK Docks ask for it to reconsidered retrospectively. It so happens that it has been built without planning permission.

In a complaint, solely about the breach of the 2nd condition, the  Ombudsman included a comment about the 5th: #16. The Authority’s view is that condition 5 should not have been imposed because the site already had the benefit of unrestricted working hours. I cannot comment on this. I do not know how the business operated in 1996 and it is too long
ago for the Ombudsman to investigate

She has replaced “The Authority”, i.e. The Tyne and Wear Development Corporation, with a planning officer’s opinion and secondly she has replaced ‘take place within the shelter’ with ‘site’. It looks like plans for enabling UK Docks to use their slipway on Sundays were being prepared by the Council as early as March 2015 when the Ombudsman’s first draft was issued – #16 confirms that she had been given two misrepresentations about the 5th condition by someone in the Council.

The Planning Officer, Gary Simmonette did not register the
that UK Docks were in breach of the 5th condition
on Sunday, 18-Dec-16, and then misinformed Customer Advocacy (CA) about it. He put them in the unworthy position of having to accuse the complainants and I was not the only one, of making allegations.

When confronted with the evidence to show that we were not making
allegations CA chose to ignore it and to hide the fact that planning had not acknowledged that UK Docks were in breach of the fifth condition on 18 December 2016 it was merged with the second.

It was the noise emanating from what was rapidly becoming a shipyard that woke everyone up, or made everyone aware the slipway was being put to use on a Sunday and no-one been given notice. As CA were claiming it was a noise issue, I added a complaint about the noise as well.

On the 7th February Mr Burrell, Technical Officer, Environmental
Health & Resilience closed Noise Nuisence Complaint 272189 so there is no record of the shed being in use on a Sunday.

On the 14th of February it was disclosed by CA that it was not
raised by as a result of the complaint but by another person and not as a result of the noise that alerted us to the use of the shed on Sunday, 18-Dec-16.

Alison who wrote on behalf of CA was obviously not aware of an attempt by the Council to enforce silence on the matter of UK Docks use of the shed on a Sunday. These further restrictions on your contact will come into effect immediately should you continue to email the Council with
historic matters.

Corporate Lead, Mrs Haley Johnson had repeated, 17th January 2017, a threat she had made 6 months earlier and in doing that she also had to conflate the 5th condition with the 2nd.
Together, with Messrs Simmonette and Burrell, she had conspired to deny that UK Docks were using the shed on a Sunday. They were not slipping or launching a vessel.

I had anticipated that something like this would happen as, they
had already misinformed the Local Government Ombudsman about the
height of the shed so I involved a Councillor to act as as witness as early as 9th January.

Councillor Anglin, who was tasked with helping expose an obvious
breach of the fifth condition simply walked away, saying: I obviously cannot be part of any actions whilst claims and allegations are being investigated.

Messrs Simmonette and Burrell denied that that UK Docks were using
their shed on a Sunday. They were being extremely economical with the
truth and it appears that they coerced Ms Hoy and Mrs Johnson to
cover up for their misdemeanours.

The ‘Seven Principles of Public Life’ have certainly been cast aside by the first two officers named but one must ask why were the women were protecting them.

Councillor Anglin had cast the Nolan Principles  aside some years before when he told us that the shed was ‘legal’ in December 2013.

Mick Dawson
4 October 2021

STC and the Local Government Ombudsman

From: Michael Dawson <>
Sent: 05 January 2021 08:31
To: Emma Lewell-Buck MP <>
Cc: Nicola Robason <>; 
John Rumney <>; 
Alison Hoy <>;

There were no rejections or out of office replies from anyone.

Dear Emma
STC and the Local Government Ombudsman
The zipped files are for reference; to back up what I have said.

Nicola, the current Monitoring Officer and John Rumney, the acting Head of Legal Services have been copied in so that they may be appraised of the current situation and I have sent a copy to Alison Hoy of Customer Advocacy (CA) so that she can pass it to Mr Swales successor when he or she arrives.
It appears that the staff who were happy to give misinformation the Local Government Ombudsman (LGO) were also the source of the false allegation being made against the good people of South Shields and it has been going on for a long time:-

The matters and allegations raised by your constituent are well documented and have been subject to a number of enquiries from Mr Dawson and other local residents over a lengthy period of time. The matter was ultimately referred by way of complaint to the Local Government Ombudsman, the outcome of which was delivered on 14 April 2015.
Corporate Lead, Mrs H Johnson, 25-Jun-15

The authorised plans indicate that UK Docks’ enclosure (shed), off River Drive, should have a river end height of 15.5m but it was built to a height of 18.2m so our claim that it is nearly 3m taller than planned is true and therefore not an allegation. Mrs Johnson’s statement of the 25th of June, five and a half years ago, is the sixth attachment to a letter to the MP for Berwick and appears to have been made with malicious intent.

My request for a copy of the letter and any attachments referring to planning matters was ignored by CA and until we see a copy it may be best to assume it is littered with similar falsehoods as well. The Council have maintained the myth or lie, with the help of people like Cllr Anglin and Mrs Johnson, that the shed had been built to the approved height since we first complained about it in September 2013. and continue to do it by repeating:-

My email dated 19 December 2019 set out the final position on this matter. It remains the case that all complaints procedures relating to this matter have been exhausted both internally within the Council and externally. Monitoring Officer, 07-Jul-15

When UK Docks told you and Cllr Hamilton in April 2019 that they had been given permission retrospectively for their shed they blew that myth to bits. That opportunity for them passed when the Executives of the Tyne Gateway Assn accepted the drawings passed to them at or following the Town Hall meeting arranged by Councillor Anglin in November 2013:

GW (Chair) advised that it was a good open meeting, It was confirmed that the structure is being built to the plans which had been approved.
Tyne Gateway Assn, 25-Nov-13

The meeting was neither open nor good; we were passed unapproved drawings with a basic error in a critical dimension but UK Docks took it’s outcome as a green light to restart work on their shed. The Council, in spite of our protests that the shed was 3m taller than planned did nothing, except maintain that it was so for a number years, quoting the LGO who they had misinformed. When it was pointed out to the Council that one of their Senior Planning Officers had been feeding the Ombudsman misinformation the Council’s story changed during 2017:

Dear Mr Dawson, From your email title it would appear to refer your earlier allegations that the Council in some way provided mis-information to the Local Government Ombudsman. This matter has been addressed previously by Mrs Johnson in her letter to you dated 5 October 2016. The Council would not respond further to you on this complaint which has exhausted the Council and Ombudsman’s complaints procedures.
Alison Hoy, Customer Advocacy (CA): 1-Dec-17

I realised immediately that the Council would seize on the lie that UK Docks had been given permission retrospectively for their shed to replace the lie about the shed having been approved and I felt it my duty kill it stone dead before it gained the momentum of the original myth. That lasted for over five years. I managed this help of the Monitoring Officer Nicola Robason and you should have some record of that eight month saga. A copy of “Dishonesty at the Town Hall” for instance.
On the 8th January last year I received a request from Simon Buck requesting my home phone number to give to a Keith Palmer and I was inclined to ignore it but after some thought I said that if he was prepared to talk about corruption at the Town Hall, UK Docks and their shed, he could have it.
On the 13th January I received a call from your office in South Shields from Mr Palmer, returned it later that day assuming that he wished to talk about the corruption associated with the shed but I was soon disabused as it became clear that it was the last thing he wanted to talk about. I bet any recording of the call has been deleted. He claimed that there was no case against UK Docks. This, as you know is a lie and I tried to contact you about it on the 13th and 14th (messages 3 and 4) but was thwarted twice by the standard reply given to first time callers which was a bit strange after the pleasantries we had exchanged about STC agreeing that UK Docks had not been granted permission etc. a few weeks before.
On the 14th January I received notice from Mr Buck, confirmation that M Palmer was basically accusing us of conspiring to influence the Ombudsman. What I was actually asking you to do, was to raise the issue of Councils lying to the Ombudsman, in Parliament to get it stopped and he made it very clear in the call that was the last thing he wanted. For a start it would put a stop to money laundering schemes, make for safer housing and do away with schemes like the transfer of UK Docks from dockland to a primarily residential area.
Sometime in February I became aware that you and Simon had separated and that put a completely different complexion on things so I wrote to Mr Palmer again and that really set the cat amongst the pigeons and of all the files of the bundle attached, I suggest you read /8toKP20-Feb-20/ if nothing else.
Not only did I get a response from Mr Buck, I got one from Nicola Robason which I ignored because she appeared to have been told to clear up after Messrs Buck and Palmer’s misdemeanours:

My email dated 19 December 2019 set out my position on this matter. It remains the case that all complaints procedures relating to this matter have been exhausted both internally within the Council and externally.

Mr Palmer prefers to sit in the background and let Mr Buck to do his dirty work and if you read his message to me and my criticism of it (11 and 12), you will see what I mean.
It would appear Mr Palmer comes from the same school as those who misled the Ombudsman and treat the Council’s Solicitors and Monitoring Officers with contempt.
Monitoring Officer is now one of Nicola’s duties and before that, it was one of Mr M Harding’s but I do not think it went well with him being the head of Legal Services and he tried to pass the duty on to someone who did not accept the post, so it ended up with Nicola. There are some that are so used to giving misinformation and or misrepresentation to the Ombudsman they do not think twice about lying to a council solicitor.
There is, for instance, an unanswered letter to Mr Harding, 09-Apr-19, about Gill Hayton’s response to my charge against Cllr Anglin and his part in the meeting of November 2013, for the next Head of Legal Services or the next Chief Executive to look at.
On a happier note, I would like to add my thanks to Nicola and Stuart Reid for hastening the departure of Cllr Iain Malcolm.

All the best for the new year,
Kind regards,
Michael Dawson



Nicola Robason: “I can confirm that the Council as Local Planning Authority has not received a retrospective planning application from UK Docks. – Excuse for Inaction, 19-Dec-20, in which she says:
The Council has recognised that the development of the shed on the site is unauthorised but concluded some time ago that no enforcement action would be taken as this was not in the public interest.

It was pointed out to the Council in January 2014 that the shed was not only to wide (1m) but too high (3m) but they denied it.  They then accepted that it was too wide a month later but continued to dispute the height for another month. Continue reading Monitoring

STC and the LGO

Originally published 8-Jul-16 this letter has been republished in full for the attention of all because the Council position has not changed since. They maintain that the shed is built to the approved height despite evidence to the contrary; authorised drawing 8296/2.

He did not reply but asked his Corporate Lead to present an alternative view to avoid the questions raised in the penultimate paragraph:- I suggest that you ask your legal department to review the original complaint of the 10th January 2014 and the correspondence following it up to 13th February and ask them to answer the simple question, What is the planned height of the shed? and the for you to answer the fundamental question: “As the applicant has not discharged condition 2 why is there no retrospective planning application?

Neither question was answered. The Corporate Lead replied on his behalf saying: "Dear Mr Dawson -Thank you for your letter to Martin Swales, Chief Executive dated 8 July 2016, requesting matters related to your previous complaint to be raised as a new complaint, I manage the process and staff that support customer complaints and compliments. Your letter has therefore been forwarded to me to consider and respond."
She went on to say that there was no evidence of misinformation having been given to the Ombudsman.

The ‘New’ Complaint:- Continue reading STC and the LGO

Corporate Lead and Members of Parliament.

The other residents may have made allegations but if they have been complaining about the noise and change of use of the enclosure, it is unlikely. Other than to have born witness to noise issues, I had only complained that the shed is over size, and the Council had done nothing about that since they were told it was over size in late 2013.
That was until December 18th 2016 when I raised a complaint about them using the shed on a Sunday without notice. It was actually the noise that alerted us all to it use. I initially thought is was from the Fish Quay opposite until I remembered that the Fish Quay did not operate on a Sunday out of consideration of their neighbours and that includes ‘us’ over the water.

Continue reading Corporate Lead and Members of Parliament.

No Answers at All

In the Planning Manager’s response to my proposition that UK Docks had built their shed on River Drive some 3m tall and a meter wider than planned he replied that it was not. He cited an error on and unauthorised plan regarding the height and told a lie about the width:

The dimensions of the steelwork have been checked on site and they are in accordance with the measurements shown on the approved drawings. The variation in the angle of the pillars is not considered to be material.

The drawings show the width as 12.2m but the shed is 13.1m wide. In fact the approved drawing shows that the shed is 2.7m higher than permitted. The drawing he quotes is not approved because of errors on it.
The proposition also raised four questions and the dialogue is shown below and I have added a commentary which shows he has evaded them all:

Continue reading No Answers at All

Job No 274396 (EIR for Screen Prints)


Copied to my mailbox because the Council tend to ignore complaints they do not wish to answer and the original complaint will no longer exist. If they do respond, it will not be to answer the question or help resolve a complaint and experience has shown that the response is at best irrelevant but more likely to be a misrepresentation and a fraudulent one at that. This happens when dealing with corrupt bodies such as South Tyneside Council or the Local Government Ombudsman and it is a wise precaution to make a secure copy of the original complaint. Continue reading Job No 274396 (EIR for Screen Prints)

Dear Monitoring Officer 7-May-2019

The whole point of the original complaint, which I have attached, made when UK Docks restarted work on the enclosure in January 2014, was that they had not applied for retrospective planning permission and as far as I am aware they had not before they applied for permission to extend it, 20-05-2014. You can confirm that this is true.

Angela and therefore Julie have been misinformed by UK Docks and you can confirm that also. To it bluntly, whoever told them that UK Docks had submitted a retrospective application was lying. Continue reading Dear Monitoring Officer 7-May-2019

The Misrepresentation: 13-Jan-20

That UK Docks have permission for their shed.

Event List:

Hi Mick,
I appreciate your arguments, but this far down the line there is
nothing we can do. Angela has talked to several relevant people,
and the point is the council gave retrospective planning. Which
they are allowed to do. We are working with Angela to negate
further issues with the site. It’s all we can do now: limit noise
and any other issues If they occur. Regards Julie
‘Dishonesty at the Town Hall’ is published. A copy sent to Emma’s Office elicited the response “Please note that if you do not provide your full address no further action will be taken on your case.” the first such message for many years.

Continue reading The Misrepresentation: 13-Jan-20