Interference by the Chair of the TGA.

There was no agenda because the Councillor said at the TGA meeting he would find out if the structure was built to approved plans i.e. it was the only item on the agenda, as simple as that.
Some of us thought that because of the Principal Planning Officer’s silence on the matter the approved plans showed it was not built as planned.
No approved plans were produced at the meeting nor since by the Principal Planning Officer. However an approved drawing was posted on the Planning Portal (Drawing 8296/14) which showed that the structure was not only too high but confirmed that it was too wide as well.
It was because the Council would not tell the Residents what the dimensions of the structure were nor provide any approved drawing from 1996 that we had to call on the TGA.
I worked out the because the pillars were now vertical one could determine the width of the  footing laid in 2001.

Date: Fri, 20 Dec 2013 13:06:52 +0000
From: Graeme Watson
Subject: Re: Tyne Slipway Development.
To: Michael Dawson; Principal Planning Officer
CC: Cllr J Anglin; TGA Committee

From: Michael Dawson
To: Graeme Watson;
Cc: TGA Committee
Sent: Saturday, 21 December 2013, 14:00
Subject: Tyne Slipway Development.

As chair of the TGA I feel it necessary to respond to your various e-mails and seek clarification of certain points.

In response to your mail I shall go through each point you make:

With regard to your e-mail below of Monday at 16:10 to Cllr Anglin, you infer that you have measured the structure down at the boatyard and – as you have stated – appear to have dimensional evidence that the structure is one metre wider than designed.

I have made no inference to measuring the structure I made a statement.

I note in your e-mail of yesterday evening that you appear to have measured the structure from outside the boatyard site, and I am unsure how accurate that could be, especially given that you claim your measurements are to within 5 cm of accuracy.

I did not need access to any boatyard as the method used to measure the structure any boy scout with a couple of badges could do.

You wrote your e-mail on Monday in a fashion which appears to give the impression that you are writing on behalf of the TGA as a group; if this were the case I would have expected you to follow protocol and that committee members would have given their consent to this or at least have been made aware of your new evidence.

I would like to bring your attention to two e-mails, the first from the Vice Chair, 20/11/13. Having given her apologies about attending the November meeting she states ‘If possible can those in attendance obtain copies of the evidence the council produces in support of their apparent claim that they have exercised due diligence so that the committee can form a view as to whether we are able to challenge such evidence’

Second e-mail from yourself to the Secretary, 20/11/13 subsequently forwarded to committee members ‘I would infer this will be a structured meeting and standard protocols and meeting ethics will apply ‘ .

I will continue to do my best to obtain evidence as requested by our Vice Chair. My only intention is that the membership of the TGA and in fact any interested resident outside of the TGA, become as fully informed as possible regarding the River Drive development. I will continue to act in the spirit of the TGA ‘Mission Statement’.

The TGA could then have ascertained the validity of your findings and agreed to subsequent action; at this point you cannot give any assurance that your measurements are accurate or provide an answer to the Principal Planning Officer as to what method you used to obtain them. As a result your measurements cannot be verified and taken as being accurate.

My findings, as you well know, have been circulated to the TGA committee members for their information. I would be more than happy for validation to occur. May I suggest that the whole matter could be put to bed if an independent party were allowed on site to confirm or deny my findings. Should my findings be proved to be wrong then I will happily stand down on the matter.

In my opinion the only way to get these measurements with the accuracy stated would be to gain access to the boatyard and physically measure between the various points on the footings. I am therefore concerned that, purporting to represent the TGA as a whole you have somehow gained access to the site without permission and taken these measurements.

I accept that this is your opinion only and one unworthy of your position of Chair of the TGA. Are you accusing me of trespass?

In order to put my mind at ease, can you therefore explain how you have obtained your findings?

Forgive me but I believe it is ‘O’ level maths.

Also, in your e-mail of Monday at 16:10 you make reference to myself and state that I informed you that the meeting at the Town Hall would be a formal meeting with with structured protocols. In fact, I never said that the meeting would be formal as per the e-mail I sent out prior to this meeting. I am not happy to be misquoted in official correspondence you sent out to council officials.

Please see above reference to your mail dated November 20th. I was merely quoting your statement.

If you want to communicate with the Town Hall on a personal basis with your comments and views on the boatyard issue do not use the TGA as a platform to do this. Any official correspondence from the group as a whole is to be done through the secretary, and any new evidence or information is to be presented to the TGA committee as a group. Any such information can then be progressed in structured manner as required.

I will continue to gather information as I see fit, and as requested, as an individual or as a committee member of the TGA. May I remind you that you announced to the Committee that there was nothing further could be done on this matter at this time. I would refer you to the minutes of the last committee meeting, evening 25/11/13, but to the best of my knowledge non were taken.

I am aware that I am not the only member of the committee who has serious reservations about what we have been told. As Chair you have determined that the next official platform to present information will not occur until mid January. Therefore I will continue to present the information available to me as it occurs, by circulating such to the membership. I must add at this point that it is a major concern that the wider membership of, I believe, some 80 members, are not being kept up to date with TGA activity.

Please revert with a full explanation of the method used to measure the width of the structure so that we, as the TGA can be satisfied of their validity.

See notes above.
As you are aware I have continued to request information from the Principal Planning Manager regarding plans of the slipway structure. He has now sent me an e-mail telling me not to e-mail him again.
I can only assume that your e-mail and the one from the Principal Planning Manager is a clumsy attempt to silence me. I sincerely hope you can reassure me that I am wrong in my assumption.

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