Fountain of Misinformation – Part 9B

Someone at a very high level in the chain of command at the Town Hall had taken the decision as the complaints started to roll in about the height of the structure being built  on one of two slipways on the Tyne still in use in September 2013, to hide the fact that it was nearly 3m taller than planned. It was done to hide that fact that Building Control were not in control.

When you bear in mind that the control of both slipways on the Tyne were at one time held by one family you will understand why the most recent posts about the shed on the slipway off River Drive are labelled ‘Shed and Corruption’.
This post is an update to an extract from my email to Mrs Johnson written on the 2nd September 2016. It is a list of corrections to the misrepresentations made on behalf of the Chief Executive by her on 1-Aug- 2016:-

• Letter to MP Trevelyan dated 1 June 2015 advising her of your complaint
Actually the letter of 1-Jun-2015 was from MP Trevelyan to the Chief Executive and copied to me;

• Email 4 December 2015 to Gary Simmonette and the Planning Team referencing the original boat shed dimensions, which had been addressed through the complaints procedure
If you had read my email 4-Dec to Mr Simmonette you would realise it was about the illogicality of applying for planning permission to extend a shed that had been built without planning permission;

• Email 1 February 2016 regarding the February committee meeting, making reference to misinformation and/or misrepresentation by the Council in supplying information to the Local Government Ombudsman.
there was no email of 1 February 2016. There was a letter from Mr Mansbridge confirming that he had not passed the information about the shed’s height to the Planning Committee.

• Letter 8 July 2016 to the Chief Executive and the Ombudsman
Actually the letter of 8-Jul-2016 was to MP Trevelyan and copied to the Chief Executive –I had not written to the Ombudsman per the letter from an independant legal advisor. There were number of items of misrepresentation, about the development on River Drive, made by the Council to residents, the LGO and an MP that needed sorting first.

• submitted repeated complaints, essentially regarding the same issue, after our complaints process has been exhausted
It is the same complaint, 248789, but some issues have not been satisfactorily addressed because Mr Mansbridge raised 253539 to overwrite it. The issue is not exhausted until the Council answer the question about planned height of the shed. Is the shed 2.7m taller than permitted (yes/no).

• 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
– I have not written to the local police, independent auditors or the Standards Board which you are implying. If I think that the Council is acting improperly on any issue I believe I am entitled to write to my MP – it is up to the MP whether he or she takes up my case. I wrote to my ward Councillors because they, apart from the Chairman of the Planning Committee(Cllr Wood), attended the meeting where we were told the shed was ‘legal’.  Are you suggesting that the Councillors should not be told that they were misinformed by a Principal Planning Officer of the Council?
I included members of the Residents Group Committee as well because I had to relay the ‘facts’ to a meeting with them a few hours after the same meeting where we were told the shed was ‘legal’. I did not believe what I had been told by the Officer and it took me 2 months and numerous emails to prove that shed was not ‘legal’ or should I say compliant. Are you suggesting that members of the Residents Group should remain ignorant of the fact that the shed was not compliant and built without planning permission?

• refused to accept the decision of the Council or Local Government Ombudsman, by arguing points of detail
the Council have based their decisions on drawings provided by UK Docks. These were not authorised and one of them was incomplete because there were vital details missing. I based my arguments on documents provided by their Agents in pursuance of ST/1146/13/COND which I considered more valid. You also say I have attempted to have the complaint reconsidered in ways that are incompatible with your adopted complaints procedure, or with good practice

Two of the 7 survived the criticism of the 2nd September 2016:-

  1. • submitted repeated complaints, essentially regarding the same issue, after our complaints process has been exhausted
  2. • refused to accept the decision of the Council or Local Government Ombudsman, by arguing points of detail

The others were rewritten, somewhat hypocritically, as:-

  • attempted to have the complaint reconsidered in ways that are incompatible with our adopted complaints procedure, or with good practice.

I say hypocritical because because if one looks at the history of the  complaint that the shed is taller than planned, from a request made in September 2013 for clarification on the planned height of it,

Has the revised height of 15.5metres been approved or is it in breach of the 1996 Planning approval?

to today, one will see that the Council have avoided the question about the height by not using their adopted complaints procedure. Especially not the one described on their website.

There is ample evidence that the Council manipulated their own adopted complaints procedure to hide wrong decisions, misconduct etc. by evasions and denials.

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