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R.I.P. SBC? – Nigel responds

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R.I.P.  SBC? – Nigel responds

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IN THE PUBLIC INTEREST

Many of my friends and Corruption Busters supporters may be aware that I have been less productive of late; I have been enduring some worrying health issues.

By now, tens of thousand of readers have seen the astonishing letter from Scarborough Borough Council’s Head of Legal & Democratic Services (democratic?) Ms Lisa DIXON, which I received by email on Thursday 28th March 2013 at 4:18pm. It is available to view here.

I have now recovered sufficiently to provide a response which I present here in the public interest. The Comments section, below my response, is open to all – elected members and paid public servants of Scarborough Borough Council not excluded.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

—– Original Message —–

From: ‘Nigel’

To: Lisa.Dixon@scarborough.gov.uk

Cc: David.Kitson@scarborough.gov.uk ; Jim.Dillon@scarborough.gov.uk

Sent: Sunday, March 31, 2013 5:26 PM

Subject: Response to your spurious letter of Claim (28/03/13 – [01]

Ms Lisa DIXON – Head of Legal & Democratic Services – Scarborough Borough Council

Cc: Mr Jim DILLON – CEO and Head of paid Service – SBC

Mr David KITSON – Senior Solicitor – SBC

IN THE PUBLIC INTEREST

Lisa,

In thanking you for your letter of 28th March 2013, provided as an email attachment – an AdobeImage.pdf document entitled [untitled].pdf – by Kimberly J HUDSON, I place on the record my assertion that it has caused me considerable stress, anxiety and distress by virtue of its overt threat of legal action (civil and criminal) against me, clearly intended to intimidate, bully and harass me in a manner contrary to the terms of the Protection from Harassment Act 1997.

Before completing my first reading of your letter, I experienced angina pectoris pains more extreme than I have ever previously experienced, necessitating immediate use of my prescription drug Nitrolingual, and causing me to fear that a heart attack was imminent. It was some time before I recovered sufficiently to read and digest the full nature of your letter.

The letter bears the signature of Lisa DIXON, whom I may wish to address on this matter in a personal capacity. To that end, please provide your full name, home address and contact details. Please also provide the name(s) of the pary(ies) under whos instruction your email was written, together with his/her/their home addresses and contact details.

May I began by reminding you that I have made a large number of requests that such communications as your letter should be confined to one of two formats: (i) AdobeText.pdf or (ii) within the textual body of the email. I regret to note that you appear unwilling to conform to universally endorsed ‘best practice’ – which recognises that communications of this nature my require the citation or annotation of certain passages. To present your letter, knowing (as you do) that I have made this request on numerous occasions, yet persisting with the less transparent and actively obstructive policy of denying me this ‘best practice’ response methodology and common courtesy, is unhelpful and evasive in the extreme.

I take note, too, of a fact that I mentioned to you in my most recent email to you of 21st March 2013 (to which I still await a response); namely, that you have disregarded my correspondence to you for over a year now – including Formal Complaints, compliant in every way with the Council’s Standards Procedures, old and new. During this period, you have responded to other members of the public, including one or more of the Real Whitby authors – but not to me.

In short, you have discriminated against me, in breach of the terms of the Human Rights Act 1997.

The content of your present letter leaves me shocked, intimidated, frightened and utterly in the dark.

I note that your letter is in no way compliant with the Ministry of Justice Pre-Action Protocol for Defamation, and would appear to evince complete ignorance of the CPR (Civil Procedure Rules).

My belief-system includes a belief in the necessity for openness, transparency and accountability at all levels of government – and in Lord Nolan’s Seven Priciples of Public Life.

You appear to be making an overt threat of legal action based upon a number of unfounded and very serious allegations against me (and others) on behalf of (unspecified) third party(ies) based on my (our) beliefs; this would appear to constitute an offence under the CPS definition of a hate crime.

You do not disclose the identities of those whom you claim to have been the subject of defamation, or by whom. Without the benefit of knowing which of your allegations has application to me, or whom you allege to be the injured party(ies), I remain unclear as to in what way I may be able to assist you.

Before addressing your remarks in detail (which I will facilitate by assigning numbers to the paragraphs of your letter, as reproduced below), allow me, please, to seek clarification regarding the party you claim to represent – ‘Scarborough Borough Council’.

To my knowledge, the phrase ‘Scarborough Borough Council’ is commonly applied to two distinct organisations.

Firstly, there is ‘Scarborough Borough Council’, the body democratic – authorised under the Local Government Act 1972 (and implemented on 1st April 1974 and revisions and amendments thereto), comprising (normally) 50 (fifty) elected Members, bearing the title ‘Councillor’: ‘Scarborough Borough Council 1′ .

Secondly, there is ‘Scarborough Borough Council’, the body corporate comprising a number of companies with Registered Offices dotted around the Borough, and beyond:P ‘Scarborough Borough Council 2′ .

You will need to make clear on whose behalf you act – and on whose authority. Are you representing ‘Scarborough Borough Council 1′ (the democratic assembly), or ‘Scarborough Borough Council 2′ (the Officers and staff of the body corporate), or are you representing specific individuals of either or both?

In future correspondence (if any, and you should be aware that I may choose not to correspond with you, or your clients, at my own prerogative), please specify which of the two organisations you are representing by conforming to my simple distinction-procedure nomenclature, as outlined above. Thank you.

You will also need to make clear with whom, precisely, you seek to take issue. You have not shown that articles published under my by-line were authored by me. You will need to do so.

Addressing your letter:

Paragraph 1

Thank you. I was aware of your name and position.

I am an elector of the Parish of Whitby, the Borough of Scarborough and the County of North Yorkshire. I am a pensioner, in declining health, who left school at the age of fifteen. I have made a number of significant contributions to the well-being of my community, not least in the area of voluntary anti-corruption campaigning, in the public interest. I believe that the introductions have now been completed.

Paragraph 2

Your inspection of the Real Whitby web-site has seemingly led you to the conclusion that articles are published through that organ by a number of authors and that I am one of those authors.

You allege that these articles contain “defamatory and untrue” comments. That may be your opinion, by all means. But no more than that. If false, your allegations may well themselves be defamatory and untrue. I would caution you take care on this point.

You allege that unspecified elements of unspecified articles by unspecified authors are, in some unspecified way,  “harmful” to ‘the Council’ and/or other unspecified Claimants. This is not so. Insofar as articles result in the exposure of wrong-doing, they may truly be said to act in the very best interests of ‘the Council’, whose repute and good-standing in the public perception is entirely dependent upon the swift eradication of wrong-doing on the part of elected members and/or paid public servants.

You go on to assert that I am one of the authors of material which you allege to be “offending to Scarborough Borough Council, its Officers and Members (by which, I can only take you to mean both ‘Scarborough Borough Council 1′ and  ‘Scarborough Borough Council 2′) and which have or will hinder the ability of the Council to discharge a number of its functions”.

I profoundly disagree. As explained above, any exposure of wrong-doing can only serve in the very best interests of ‘the Council’ and the electorate.

The thrust of my articles (and I cannot speak for “others”) is to highlight wrong-doing on the part of those certain individuals (elected members and/or paid public servants) whose actions fall within that category of act specified in the Transparency International definition of “corruption” – namely, “Corruption is the abuse of entrusted power for private gain. It harms all who depend on the integrity of people in authority”. If you have indeed inspected the Real Whitby web-site, as you assert, you will be already aware of that.

It is unclear to me in what way you are attempting interpret my declared objectives to be “harmful” to ‘Scarborough Borough Council 1′ or ‘Scarborough Borough Council 2′, as these are organisations (ie ‘persons’) - a body democratic and a body corporate – whereas my publications are specifically directed toward addressing the conduct of individual human beings whose conduct is called into question by a careful scrutiny of the public record, augmented by correspondence and/or interviews with individual human beings.

It would appear to me that in your statutory role as Monitoring Officer, you have every reason to be appreciative of the information made available not only to the wider public, but to you yourself for the furtherance of your statutory monitoring duties.

You go on to assert that I stand under those duties and obligations of an “investigative journalist”, which you define as:

1. the sources of your information are verified;

2. comment is sought from those being criticised before the article is published; and

3. the article is fair, balanced and even-handed

This may be so; I would not know.

a) as stated, the source of the majority of information disclosed by me (and others) on the Real Whitby web-site comprises information available on the public record and in the public domain (Agendas, Minutes, FOIA responses, SBC/NYCC press releases, etc), augmented by email correspondence and other information from reliable sources, named or anonymous, including elected members and paid public servants. If you wish to challenge the veracity of these sources you will find an arduous and potentially embarrassing path ahead of you.

b) you appear to wish to gloss over the large number of occasions on which a right to reply has been offered, only to go ignored. An example that springs readily to mind is SBC Leader Councillor Tom FOX’s four-month refusal to acknowledge my question regarding his past knowledge of the execrable Sir Jimmy SAVILE, followed by a similar treatment of my question regarding the Council’s intentions in respect of former Mayor Peter JACONELLI – a matter of acute public interest. This evasion has been noted by Police Officers of Operation Yewtree, with whom I hold a continuing dialogue and to whom articles on that particular topic have been submitted ahead of publication.

c) nothing could be more “fair, balanced and even-handed” than the truth. Perhaps you disagree?

But it is clear that you have wittingly withheld such information as might identify precisely who has taken offence, and in relation to which statements in which articles and/or by which authors. With regard to the matter of sources, I am surprised to learn that you have hastened to identify the duties and obligations of an “investigative journalist” without mention of a very significant privilege – the protection of sources, though without reference to the protection afforded regarding the anonymity of sources.

Consequently, you have foregone any claim to pursuing the identity of certain sources – though they may, in the public interest, be published into the public domain, with their respective permissions, of course, at the prerogative of the authors.

Paragraph 4

You assert that I (and others) have “consistently failed” to comply with certain terms – for which you have cited no source, verified or otherwise. How is it then, that you have failed to cite a single instance – much less, a single instance for each of the Real Whitby authors?

You assert that the web-site contains “malicious, untrue and defamatory material in relation to which the subjects of the statements made have been denied the right to comment until after publication, if at all”. You have cited no example. You have identified no single “subject”. You have made a wild and general assertion – nothing more. I find that wild and general assertion to be malicious, untrue and defamatory. You may find yourself required to account for that in due course.

Again, if you have indeed inspected the Real Whitby web-site, you will be aware that provision has been made by the webmaster for anyone – elected members and paid public servants not excluded - to respond to the articles (positively or negatively, as they are so moved). Indeed, only a few of days ago, an elected member took advantage of that facility, which is available around the clock. Self-evidently, the ‘right to reply’ is inherent within the publication format.

Paragraph 5

You provide an opinion. I am unclear as to your source for that opinion. I have seen no record of ‘Scarborough Borough Council 1′ adopting an opinion on the matter. Can you point me, please, to the Agenda and/or Minutes which record the adoption of that opinion? On whose behalf do you offer that opinion? What is its provenance? On what credentials is it founded? Are you, in fact, merely offering your own personal opinion?

Paragraph 6

Similarly, and notwithstanding your caveat  “at the very least”, from whence is that opinion derived? To which “actionable breaches of civil law” do you refer? Again, and notwithstanding your claim to have inspected the Real Whitby web-site, you have cited no specific article, no specific author, no specific statement, no specific ‘injured’ party. I find your statement incomprehensible; it is another wild and general allegation, offered without substantiation, evidence, witnesses – nothing.

Taken in its entirety, this paragraph of your letter:  “At the very least, Scarborough Borough Council is satisfied that many of the articles and comments published amount to actionable breaches of civil law” is worded in such a way is to evade comprehensibility.  I have published, on average, only two or three articles a month – often less. Your assertion that “many of the articles and comments published amount to actionable breaches of civil law” indicates that the much of the material with which you now claim to take issue have been in the public domain for a considerable period of time – perhaps years. Is it your intention that the material contained within “many” of them has always amounted to “actionable breaches of civil law” since first publication? If so, how is that you take issue on that point only now, months or years after publication? Or is it that the material has only recently acquired, in your mind, the character of material actionable at law in the light of newly available information, for which no responsibility may be attributed to me? Or is it that only now have you arrived at a novel interpretation of material which hitherto caused no offence? I can foresee no way in which an accommodation can be reached without a clear indication of which material (and since when) forms the subject matter of your claim or in what particular way in which it only now is perceived by you as being actionable at law.

Paragraph 7

Your reiteration of “the Council’s” position (again, which “Council”?), is unhelpful. Which articles? Which statements? Which Officers? Which Councillors? These details are vital, yet you pass over them without identifying any one of them.

You are, I trust, aware that there exists a prohibition against elected members drawing upon the legal resources of the public purse to address alleged instances of defamation; they must pay for their own solicitors. Is it not your duty, in the spirit of even-handedness, to have informed me of that fact?

Paragraph 8

Your opinion as to the likelihood of me (or others) mounting a successful defence of any putative claim on the basis of “justification, honest comment or qualified privilege” due to my alleged failure to verify information, seek comment or present a balanced story, is erroneous and disregards the public interest test, the duty of every citizen to expose wrong-doing, and the right of the electorate to representation subject to accountability.

It also places ‘the Council’ in the extraordinary position of seeking to take action against those who, having compliantly pursued the designated procedures of justice in respect of wrong-doing, are patently performing with greater integrity than certain paid public servants whose statutory duty it is to uphold high ethical standards. The correspondence record alone suffices to prove the point. To cite a single example, you may wish to recall your year-long refusal to process my legitimate complaint against two appointed members of the (pilot) Whitby Harbour Board whose breach of the Code of Conduct is a matter of record, appearing as it does manifested in writing, on Scarborough Borough Council (whichever) letterheads.

Paragraph 9

‘Scarborough Borough Council’ (whichever) may entertain whatever expectations it pleases, so long is it does so lawfully. Similarly,  ’Scarborough Borough Council’ (whichever) may choose to initiate court proceedings against me, where the law provides an opportunity to do so. I can assure you that to do so would be imprudent in the extreme, for two reasons:

Firstly, I have caused to be published a series of article (as you will know if you have personally inspected the Real Whitby web-site, as you assert) under the umbrella rubric “In My View”. As such, the articles form an expression of my opinion, as protected under Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights 1948, to which this country is a co-signatory:

Article 19.

Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.

Secondly, I find no difficulty in providing compelling evidence to support any and all allegations that I may have made, few though they may be. ‘The Council’ may wish to recall the Greek mythological story of Pandora’s Box.

Again, if you have truly inspected the Real Whitby web-site, you must be aware that I make allegations very seldom indeed, and only when I am fully equipped with compelling evidence to support them. I ask questions – though it is true that they seldom receive answers, transparent or opaque. They are, though, frequently supported by the testimony of elected members and paid public servants, many of whom (like myself – “and others”) find the disingenuousness of certain (other) elected members and/or paid public servants totally unacceptable. My information, when not accrued from a diligent examination of the public record, is invariably supported by individual human beings within one or other of the organisations known as ‘Scarborough Borough Council’.

Your statement “Scarborough Borough Council expect [why the use of the third person plural, if not to signify both 'Scarborough Borough Council 1' and 'Scarborough Borough Council 2'] that you are able to evidence the truthfulness of any articles or comments that you write and Scarborough Borough Council may chose to test your ability to evidence such truthfulness by initiating proceedings at court if it is felt that you have failed to comply with the terms of this letter” implies that you seek to agree terms with me, yet I find no instance, here or elsewhere in your letter, where you outline the nature of such terms. What are the terms to which you solicit my agreement or compliance? I am happy to discuss this matter, in Whitby, at your earliest convenience.

Paragraph 10

I have not, and do not, publish “untrue and defamatory statements (whether on the website referred to above or elsewhere)” – nor do I intend to do so in the future.

Indeed, why should I contemplate doing so, when the bare truth is damning enough? You have not shown that I have ever done so; nor can you. So the likelihood of ‘Scarborough Borough Council’ (whichever) taking legal action against me would appear to approach zero. What, then, is the underlying purpose of your communication other than to threaten, intimidate or bully me (and others) into silence?

Paragraph 11

This paragraph is speculative, subjunctive and merits no comment.

Paragraph 12

The contents of your letter admit no course of compliance, since neither you (personally) nor either of the organisations known as ‘Scarborough Borough Council’ hold authority over me (or others) to compel me (or others) to comply with your requests or demands, implicit or explicit, in any circumstances or in any way. You are a paid public servant. You do not compel; you serve. I have this on the assurance of your predecessor, Mr Ian George ANDERSON, former Head of Legal & Democratic Services and Monitoring Officer, in the presence of witnesses.

If you contend otherwise, you will need to show proof of authority, proof of evidence and proof of claim.

Paragraph 13

I am already aware of my right to seek independent legal advice. Thank you.

Lord Keith of Kinkel in the Derbyshire case (and with whom the other four law lords unanimously agreed) could not be clearer:

  • “It is of the highest public importance that a democratically elected governmental body, or indeed any governmental body, should be open to uninhibited public criticism. The threat of a civil action for defamation must inevitably have an inhibiting effect on freedom of speech.”

You have not identified the “others” to whom you refer, nor have you indicated that ‘the Council’ has taken the same measures against them (whoever they may be). Have you, for example, issued the same (or substantively similar) letters to other individual human beings and/or publishers who have published articles critical of ‘the Council’ that you may contend contain “malicious, untrue and defamatory material”  of a closely related nature, eg The Sunday Express, Private Eye, divers newspapers, web-sites and/or blogs?

If not, that would appear to confirm that you have singled out, for special treatment, only members of the electorate whom you are duty-bound to serve. That would be discriminatory in the extreme.

I summation, you have presented to me, in terms redolent of hostility towards me (and others), an overt threat patently intended to intimidate, bully and harass.

You have caused me considerable physical pain and placed me in fear for my health and indeed my life. Yet you have cited no single instance of actions on my part giving grounds for such threats.

You have discriminated against me over a protracted period of time. You have evinced a marked enmity towards my efforts to enhance the lamentable ethical standards of certain elected members and paid public servants. You have sought to curtail the freedom of speech and the freedom of the press.

The correspondence record confirms my contention that you stand derelict in your duty to uphold the complaints procedure of ‘the Council’. You will oblige me by recording a formal corporate complaint against yourself and against the party(ies) who so instructed you.

Furthermore, there is, in my view, a clear implication that the party or parties in whose service you have written and signed your letter may be politically motivated in a partisan way, with the objective of silencing legitimate criticism of candidates about to face the electorate at the County Council elections on 2nd May 2013. That will be a matter for the Electoral Commission. “I was only obeying orders” offers no defence.

Over the past years during which I have been engaged in my voluntary work in the public interest, exposing wrong-doing and corruption in ‘Scarborough Borough Council’, I have been the recipient of vilification in the press, apparently instigated by those whom I seek to expose. I have received ’poison-pen’ letters, threats of violence (including a threat on my life), and had one of my cats killed. I refuse to submit to such unlawful actions as these.

Understand this; the publication stops when the corruption stops.

The responsibility for discharging the task of monitoring the conduct of elected members and paid public servants lies with you, Lisa DIXON, Monitoring Officer.

I remind ‘the Council’, as I have reminded it before, that I reserve the right to publish all or any part of my correspondence, including (but not limited to) this present exchange, into the public domain, at my own discretion.

Finally, I offer ’the Council’  the so-called ‘right of reply’ on the widely-circulating rumour, originating from within the Town Hall, that arrangements are being made to allow the Leader to take leave of absence from his post for a suggested period of (but not limited to) one month. You may respond on this point at any time up until the close-of-play on Wednesday 3rd April 2013.

Yours, with kind regards,

Nigel

transparency_international
Posted by on March 31, 2013. Filed under Featured,News,Nigel Ward - In My View. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

148 Responses to R.I.P. SBC? – Nigel responds


  1. Joe Green Reply

    March 31, 2013 at 6:15 pm

    Go for it Nigel. SBC have been intimidating the population of the Borough for far too long – especially Matter Dillon and his drinking buddy, Sly Fox.

  2. Nomine Deus Reply

    March 31, 2013 at 6:21 pm

    Oh go on Nigel..don’t hold back like this tell her to go shove it where the sun don’t shine…sod being polite to someone who threatens you like she did..want some help composing a ‘decent’ letter/email…eg Hey you bitchtroll!!! go get your muffins waxed and stop bothering real decent folk with your shite!!!!
    Otherwise I thought it a very balanced and well thought out response!

  3. Carole Gerada Reply

    March 31, 2013 at 6:33 pm

    Nigel, I have been unable to open Lisa’s letter to you and until I have read it I won’t be able to advise you further. However I am extremely alarmed and distressed because you have been affected negatively by this.

    Please remain reassured that I will support and advise you and the first thing I will say is at this stage you do not need to pay for legal representation because I can help you.

    I will say no more here and will telephone you in a couple of minutes. I just wanted to show my whole hearted support on the site for you.

    Till we speak.

  4. Alan Reply

    March 31, 2013 at 7:18 pm

    Nigel – the letter from Lisa Dixon does not open, however I can say two things:
    Firstly councils cannot sue for defamation – Derbyshire County Council took this to the House of Lords and lost:
    http://www.bailii.org/uk/cases/UKHL/1992/6.html
    and
    http://www.independentproducerhandbook.co.uk/55/5a-defamation/who-can-sue.html
    Confirmed lately by the Government:
    http://www.rutland-times.co.uk/news/local/government-says-rutland-county-council-cannot-sue-for-defamation-1-4707624

    Secondly:
    While elected members and officers can use local authority funds to defend themselves if sued for libel in the course of their duties under the 2004 Local Authorities (Indemnities for Members and Officers) parliamentary order, it specifically does not allow members to bring actions as claimants.

    However, this might not stop lawyers throwing money away in costs by attacking you, such acts are not unknown!
    I personally would not have given SBC the courtesy of a reply – they do not deserve it. It appears that many of these councils and council officers have forgotten that they are public servants, and that openness, transparency, and honesty are not merely words – they are the way in which councils, and council officers, should operate.

    You are to be admired and congratulated for your ‘turning over some stones’ of public life, and those who try to suppress you by using public money instead of their own should be thoroughly ashamed of themselves – but of course they won’t be.

    Should any further action be taken by SBC in this matter, please set up a ‘donate’ button – many of us will want to stand by you.

  5. fred Reply

    March 31, 2013 at 7:29 pm

    Now Thats What I Call A Letter. great stuff nigel. i hope your health improves man, we need you. take care and respect to you nigel

  6. Jackie Greaves Reply

    March 31, 2013 at 9:41 pm

    Nigel, you are absolutely fantastic in what you do, but please take care of yourself. Hope you are okay. Take care. Jackie

  7. Longbones Reply

    March 31, 2013 at 9:48 pm

    (This is a re-post)

    Ok, enough is enough now.

    First – In Posting here I make the clear distinction between the ordinary front line SBC employee who has been demoralised by the crass incompetence of the Officer class, and those of that Officer class. (Invariably these lower levels of staff are responsible for propping up this less than able overpaid level of nonentity) In my experience, the Articles and Posts on Real Whitby contain more foresight and intelligence than displayed by some of the numb-heads and jobsworths at the helm of the “Centre of Excellence” in St Nicholas Street. Certainly it is my considered opinion that most of them at St Nicholas Street are actually unemployable in the outside world. Not for nothing is the term “Clown Hall” used on the internet.

    Local Authority Employees are by definition – Public Servants, yes – Servants of the Public. They may not like this, but this is a fact. As such, they administer Services on behalf of the public, and are accountable to them (US).

    They do not act as a mini State, or set up some sort of exclusive and secretive quasi Diplomatic Mission for the privileged and incapable. Nor do they side with, or protect the favoured Political Group of the day. They certainly do not try and supress or hide information, mistakes and wrong doings either by themselves or by Elected Members. Neither do they manipulate the ‘system’ for themselves or their favoured clique. They do not wag the tail of the dog. And one thing they certainly do not is interfere with the great system of Democracy OR Free Speech – and this has to be the most dangerous thing that is being attempted now.

    Prior to any Autocratic Dictator taking over a country it has to supress its culture and its press, and this is the trend you see now. If they get away with talking the RW site down it will be a travesty and one more step to their control and manipulation of information. Just look how our Rights are being eroded across the land and see how this lot would flex their authority in the future over anyone they chose to. Who is wagging the tail of the dog?

    In the absence of any investigative journalism by the Local Press, Real Whitby Magazine represents an outpost in an indifferent world (a beacon if you will) – and they know this. If they can silence RW and control intellectual journalism and debate, then they will move against anyone else who does not toe the line – YOU.

    In a message to the Press and in particular Private Eye – where are you now?

    To those outside of this country who see this, and in particular, those who have restored some of their democracy in the last few years – read this (as you do) and see how England is sliding towards what you have left behind. This is no joke. We must fight against the suppression of Real Whitby.

    I have no connection or vested interest in Real Whitby Magazine and I am therefore an independent free thinking individual.

  8. Bear Reply

    March 31, 2013 at 9:51 pm

    She is certainly acting like a bully and a bullshitter but that is what solicitors do. I am right along side you Nigel. For those who couldnt open the letter , this seems to work http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=430107410415348&set=a.379100808849342.89916.379070908852332&type=1&theater

  9. Yorkie Gull Reply

    March 31, 2013 at 10:03 pm

    Once more the bullying threatening behaviour of the SBC has come to the fore as they attempt (via their scurrilous statements content legal department) to silence certain members or any members of the boroughs populace, who publicly criticise the council its officers or councillors actions. Their so called legal eagle would do well to remember & duly inform the employees of the SBC that we the residents of the borough & their employer have the right to scrutinize & question their operating working conduct.

  10. Carole Gerada Reply

    March 31, 2013 at 10:17 pm

    Unfortunately it is not quite true that SBC Officers work for the public. They work for elected councillors because in a democracy the elected councillors have been put there by the majority of the voting public. So by keeping elected councillors happy, the Council Officers are keeping the majority of the voting public happy.

    unless the majority of the voting public vote, we will never actually live in a democracy. I have absolutely no idea how to make the majority of people with the right to vote to actually realise that their votes CAN make a real change. Being apathetic and leaving it to the minority cannot be accepted anymore. But people actually HAVE to bother to vote.

    • Longbones Reply

      April 1, 2013 at 2:10 am

      Quite right Carole and thank you for expanding on the subject of a “servant of the Public”. Your comment is both respected and appreciated.

      However,in the past the question has been posed “Who runs Scarborough Borough Council?, the Officers of the Councillors?”. This is a valid question(s) as it has been stated to me on more than one occasion that Elected members do not always read the sometimes hefty documents that they receive for meetings, and go along with the Officer Advice contained within in them. In other words, they are controlled by the Officers. My earlier comments about the standard of some of these Officers still stands.

      Yes, we may not have the Democracy that we aspire to. But we still have the framework for this which is continually undermined – and for which we have to be eternally vigilant.

      My best regards to you, and to Nigel in his position of ill health.

  11. Jane Swales Reply

    March 31, 2013 at 10:26 pm

    What a disgraceful attempt to silence the people who are doing the job Ms Dixon is paid for. And doing it a sight better at that. And paid very well, I might add. Does anybody know what her salary actually is? And to think, we the taxpayers are paying her! So much for serving the public.

    - Disgusted of North Yorkshire.

  12. J Chapman Reply

    March 31, 2013 at 10:56 pm

    test

  13. J Chapman Reply

    March 31, 2013 at 10:58 pm

    Your link to the Council legal letter doesn’t work but I assume the version reproduced here is correct: http://goo.gl/g1m3G

    Why you should be surprised by the action taken by the council to protect its corporate self from what it clearly believes to be misleading, unresearched, unattributed and mischievous attacks by yourself, Tim Thorne and others via the lax and liberal outlet afforded by Real Whitby, is beyond me.

    Your accusations need to be 100% verifiable before you commit them to print.

    • Frank Chalmers Reply

      April 1, 2013 at 12:11 am

      Who’s “Tim Thorne”?

      Has he had a letter too?

      Can you actually read son, or do you just write what SBC legal department pay you to write?

      The Council is “protecting its corporate self”? Are you dense? These people are asking questions about where our money is going, how competent the people “running the show” are, and they get stone-walled, and lambasted for it. A healthy government is one that isn’t afraid of scrutiny. SBC are terrified of it. They hide, they lie, the deceive. It is that simple, anyone with an iota of common sense and five minutes worth of research can see that.

      These are of course just questions, based upon my opinions of what you have written – they are sure not for you to get all upset over, and throw your toys out of the buggy.

      But, by all means feel free to answer the questions openly and honestly. I would love to hear what you have to say.

      • Hugo Reply

        April 1, 2013 at 11:09 am

        If you are correct, then they ave nothing to fear. They should be saying “sue me and be damned”.

        • J Chapman Reply

          April 1, 2013 at 3:49 pm

          Exactly. Why the fuss if due process proves that all the accusations are true? I would be pleased to get my day in court if I knew that my evidence was sound.

          • Hugo Reply

            April 2, 2013 at 12:55 am

            There is however, the issue of cost. Lawyers in this field are never cheap. He may get one that will work pro bono or on conditional fee arrangement if they think he’s on a winner. Even that is unlikely to be free.

  14. Sally h Reply

    March 31, 2013 at 11:29 pm

    A brilliant response Nigel. It must not have been easy compiling her letter with her arm up her back . She receives a very generous salary which she clearly does not deserve. I eagerly await the next instalment .

  15. Tom Brown Reply

    April 1, 2013 at 8:08 am

    Terrific work Nigel, If push comes to shove they will need a very large court of law indeed.
    Three times I have asked SBC the following Freedom of Information Question :- Has Scarborough Borough Council been abolished? without even getting a FOI number in return.
    I shall ask ‘Scarborough Borough Council’, the body democratic’ the same question. By law SBC1 is obliged to answer if they don’t it is obvious that they HAVE been abolished and SBC2 (a Public Ltd Company) the body corporate is sitting on our assets which include Whitby Harbour.

    • Hugo Reply

      April 1, 2013 at 11:12 am

      You don’t need an FOI request to answer the question has the SBC been abolished. The answer in No.

  16. Alan Reply

    April 1, 2013 at 9:15 am

    Many thanks to J. Chapman for his helpful link, as he comes across as a council spokesperson it is not surprising that he knew it.
    Dixon’s basic salary for those who are curious is over £67k plus a further juicy chunk for pension purposes.
    This is a copy of an FOI request sent to Dillon, Fox, and Dixon this morning:

    Dear Cllr. Dillon et al

    The letter from Lisa Dixon to Nigel Ward states the following:

    “It has come to the Counci|’s (sic) attention that articles published on the abovementioned website contain defamatory and untrue comments which are harmful to Scarborough Borough Council”

    And follows with:

    “Should you continue to publish untrue and defamatory statements (whether on the website referred to above or elsewhere) then it is likely that Scarborough Borough Council will initiate legal proceedings against you.”

    FOI Request:
    Why is it that Scarborough Borough council is different from all other councils in England in that it can sue for defamation?

    And is your Head of Legal Services unaware of the ruling from Lord McNally in January of this year when he stated:

    “Lord McNally said: “My officials have explored the issue with officials at the Department for Communities and Local Government, which is responsible for the 2011 Act. The Government are in no doubt that … the courts would still find that local authorities cannot bring action in defamation.”*

    I shall of course allow the statutory 20 working days for a response to this letter.

    Or perhaps your Head of Legal Services might find it reasonable to withdraw the apparent threat to Nigel Ward?

    • J Chapman Reply

      April 1, 2013 at 3:56 pm

      Are you desperate? I’ve never visited Scarborough nor, as far as I know, spoken to anyone who lives or works there. Are you shocked that any free spirit could stand up for SBC’s right to challenge defamatory articles?

      The soi-disant ‘corruption busters’ – are perfectly entitled to ask where your money is going and how competent your local government officers are. But accusations of corruption, rather than incompetence, are extremely serious and must be provable. If the “corruption busters” can prove their allegations then they need have nothing to fear from a defamation charge. Indeed, they might welcome the opportunity to confront their target in a court of law.

      They should get advice from a barrister and proceed accordingly.

  17. rod mathers Reply

    April 1, 2013 at 9:21 am

    I have never heard such twaddle. 100% verifiable? You wear your bias on your sleeve, Mr ‘Chapman’. If a man is charged with a hundred murders and one remains unproven, should he go free? Your masters have set you up for a fool.

    • J Chapman Reply

      April 1, 2013 at 4:00 pm

      As I’m sure you know, a man who has been found guilty of 99 murders is innocent until proven guilty on the charge of the 100th.

      I have no masters, by the way.

      • rod mathers Reply

        April 2, 2013 at 1:29 pm

        I expect that conviction on 99 out of 100 charges would bar one from public office?

  18. David C Reply

    April 1, 2013 at 9:45 am

    “Your masters have set you up for a fool”

    That’s just the point Rod. Councillors and Authority Officials are the public’s servants, not their masters. Their behaviour is covered by Nolan’s Seven principles of public life which Nigel and others have been at such pains to refer to throughout. For example in the ‘double-dipping’ saga, whilst there may be a scintilla of truth in the claim that ‘double-dipping’ Councillors have done nothing illegal, their actions clearly conflict with Nolan’s Seven principles to which they should adhere. That’s to say they shouldn’t claim the same thing twice – the allowance is made (properly) to cover an expense of an elected Councillor who sits on one Council. Nothing could be clearer from Nolan’s principles that the fact a few Councillors may actually be on two Councils does not entitle them to claim it twice. Sounds as if it’s all a case for single tier authorities!

  19. Carole Gerada Reply

    April 1, 2013 at 10:28 am

    I’m not too happy to be commenting on April 1st because I am still bemused and bewildered by the letter from Lisa Dixon. I will be contacting her tomorrow just to verify that she is indeed the author.

    The reason I say this is because I have a letter signed by a senior member of Yorkshire Water advising SBC that Yorkshire Water cannot approve the Middle Deepdale development due to their various concerns about flooding to not only the development site but also to existing Eastfield properties. When I spoke to her for verification of the letting she said she had no idea who had written it. The letter is dated 15 March 2013. She said another letter had been sent since then to SBC stating that providing approximately 99 conditions are met prior to the commencement of building above ground then approval is given. I have asked SBC for a copy of the letter but I am still waiting.

    I will be preparing some FOI requests in the interest of residents who elected me. I have asked our current elected Borough and District Councillors in Eastfield for information but they told me the meetings took place behind closed doors. The fact that The Scarborough News was not at the opening of Middle Deepdale on 28 March 2013 is evidence that the press have been omitted from publishing the event which the Mayor attended and opened.

    SBC ignore requests for information because elected councillors tell them what they can or cannot say.

    by the way I am an elected Parish Councillor which excludes me from receiving information which Councillors receiving an allowance get freely. All salaries of SBC officers are published on the council’s website.

  20. Hugo Reply

    April 1, 2013 at 11:07 am

    Is Nigel asserting the defence that his angina is effecting his judgement?

    • John Field Reply

      April 1, 2013 at 4:12 pm

      Nigel’s meaning is clear from his reply to Ms Dixon. He says that he suffered an attack of angina after receiving her letter. It is obvious that he is not citing it as a defence.

  21. Cugie Reply

    April 1, 2013 at 11:19 am

    I think this is utterly brilliant and love the way you’re able to write so eloquently and definitively. Thank you so much for having the courage and strength to do this and continue to do this. You’re absolutely doing the right thing and I’m so grateful for you to be able to do it. Please look after yourself as this must be so hard on you and it makes me angry to read that some person who claims to be a Representative (which is even worse) can treat people so knowingly shabbily. I hope you have an MP/opposition Councillor or someone who supports you as I feel you’re important.

    Cugie

    PS

    I have no website – I’m a concerned individual.

  22. Carole Gerada Reply

    April 1, 2013 at 11:22 am

    Not the way I read it, Hugo. All Nigel has ever done is ask questions which remain unanswered, something I can vouch for 100%. Most people go away and become apathetic when they persistently come up against a brick wall. But those of us who actually do care about our children’s and communities future persist in obtaining the answers.

    Unfortunately because the questions are asked of a bullying group of people (in some cases, not all) they band together against the questionnaire and their actions, words and complete breach of the questioner’s Human Rights and discrimination against them does cause harm not only to the communities which the questioner is asking questions on behalf of, but to the questioner’s health because the questioner has integrity and a conscience to go with it – because they can’t just shrug their shoulders and walk away.

    Can you please help by answering the questions?

    • Hugo Reply

      April 1, 2013 at 11:59 am

      Fair enough. If that’s the case he should be saying sue me and be damned. I would imagine that this letter was okay’d by their legal department. I would doubt the council would bother to take it further. They may have caused an own goal by attracting attention to it.

  23. Carole Gerada Reply

    April 1, 2013 at 11:26 am

    I see you have answered 1 question, Hugo. I look forward to the answers on the rest of them, thank you.

  24. Jon Risdon Reply

    April 1, 2013 at 11:27 am

    This madness cannot continue, and I am emailing Lisa Dixon, copying in Tom Fox & Jim Dillon to that effect. Scarborough Borough Council is acting, collectively, ultra vires and in an alleged democracy, that it totally unacceptable.

    • John Field Reply

      April 1, 2013 at 4:13 pm

      I’ll be writing as well, Jon. This really is a sledgehammer approach, and will not do the Borough’s reputation – or that of the Council – any good at all.

  25. Steven Old Reply

    April 1, 2013 at 1:00 pm

    Well said Nigel I am lost for words after reading that lot and I head is a total shed I got lost after the first paragraph lol it took that long my phonemy phone battery went flat.
    The publication stops when the corruption stop!! Good powerful worlds.
    I wish and support you with the best of luck.
    Many regards Steve

  26. Carl Arthur Reply

    April 1, 2013 at 1:03 pm

    So now the council is resorting to idle threats without a single example of alleged inaccuracy. Lisa Dixon’s LLB must have come from the back of a cornflakes packet.

  27. No Sympathy Reply

    April 1, 2013 at 1:34 pm

    Before you became a self-appointed ‘corruption buster’ perhaps you should have researched the libel laws.

    Defamation—also called calumny, vilification, traducement, slander (for transitory statements), and libel (for written, broadcast, or otherwise published words)—is the communication of a statement that makes a claim, expressly stated or implied to be factual, that may give an individual, business, product, group, government, religion, or nation a negative or inferior image.

  28. DKP Reply

    April 1, 2013 at 1:39 pm

    It seems to me that most people in this country are oblivious to the empire-building going on in local authorities all over the country. Councils, Police, hundreds of Quangos, all establishing their own petty feifdoms and channelling millions into the hands of consultants who are by no means ungrateful.

    SBC may not be the worst example, but it is the only one to have featured so prominently in Private Eye. This piece of corporate brutality should bring their autocratic unaccountability to a much wider public in the tabloids. Some commenters on here have their heads in the sand. More fool them!

  29. Tom Brown Reply

    April 1, 2013 at 2:00 pm

    How come so many multi millionaires (oligarchs) arose out of the abolition of the erstwhile ‘Soviet Union?’Communist administrators and their nepotistic offspring ran off with state assets. Just as SBC is doing with 22 limited companies. We are not allowed to know about the directors and activities of these companies but can I suggest a firm of deveopers, harbour related companies or possible like ‘Yorwaste’ a NUCLEAR WASTE HANDLER.https://www.gov.uk/government/news/energy-secretary-responds-to-cumbria-nuclear-waste-vote
    and http://www.westcumbriamrws.org.uk/page/108/International-experience.htm

    They will plead ‘localism’ having got there first.

  30. Brian Wade Reply

    April 1, 2013 at 2:15 pm

    Having read what was sent by the vermin that occupy positions of authority and power it is clearly a sign of corruption and blatant lack of care for the political and lawful process of this country as well as a severe sign of hypocrisy on the part of the council.

    They come down on you for reporting what you find, they come down on you for writing articles without responses from people you are being ignored by with the hope that you will go away. They come down on you for the very things they’ve let the Sun, the Daily Fail and their ilk get away with for decades. They come down on you, or at least threaten to while the leader of the political party they are a part of makes attempts to help out the state backed media have less regulations despite it the fact that it was the main stream media that was caught hacking phones and breaking laws.

    It is known, by those with sense and who see reason, who these people serve and it isn’t those who should be cared for and protected, it is those who’d seek to oppress.

    The failure of government at a national and local level in all areas leaves me disgusted and disappointed in some of my fellow human beings.

  31. Tom Brown Reply

    April 1, 2013 at 2:17 pm

    Re reading Lisa DIXONS letter I note that she says ‘I AM A SOLICITOR’ and then goes on to say the he has ‘failed to verify information’
    This indicates to me that we are paying a borough solicitor who seems to be without the standard required by a Borough serving solicitor
    She does not know Nigel, It is rash of her to imply that his accusations are without provenance.

  32. admin Reply

    April 1, 2013 at 2:48 pm

  33. Paul Kilpatrick Reply

    April 1, 2013 at 2:51 pm

    I wonder if the national press would like to get hold of this glen if the legal department of SBC are over stepping the mark with bullying tactics i am sure this story would do the site a world of good and get things right into the open i have read a few things on real whitby what have open my eyes nigel is not a well man and heavy handyness by the legal derpartment of SBC makes grim reading .

    paul.

  34. Paul Kilpatrick Reply

    April 1, 2013 at 2:52 pm

    I wonder if the national press would like to get hold of this, if the legal department of SBC are over stepping the mark with bullying tactics i am sure this story would do the site a world of good and get things right into the open. i have read a few things on real whitby that have opened my eyes. nigel is not a well man and heavy handedness by the legal derpartment of SBC makes grim reading .

    paul.

  35. admin Reply

    April 1, 2013 at 3:04 pm

    I just want to make it clear that the site has never refused to work with Scarborough Borough Council, indeed we publish all their press releases. I would happily give them right to respond on every article prior to publishing, it really is not a problem to us, however SBC have in the past boasted publically about filtering out emails and correspondence from some of the people who submit articles to the site, infact they have banned Tom Brodrick from ever corresponding with them at any time in the future and I know they seldom reply to anything Nigels writes to them about. So Im struggling to understand how they can complain they aren’t asked, when history tells us they have refused to reply on so many things we ask of them and even banned people from contacting them. Secondly to that, as one of several moderators of the site I will happily look at content and comments and moderate where appropriate, however to date I have never received a single specific request from Scarborough Borough Council to moderate a single specific article or comment. This site is home to some 1300 articles and 6400 comments (growing daily), if the council wants us to look at content or remove anything then they must be specific, otherwise its not possible to do anything other than close the site down, which unless forced to do so, I am unwilling to do.

    • J Chapman Reply

      April 1, 2013 at 4:08 pm

      The key question is whether you, as editor, have habitually sent copies of potentially defamatory articles to the council for comment before you publish them.

      Your defence is in your own hands. It really doesn’t change your obligations if the council chooses not to correspond with Tom Brodrick.

      In your position, I would have ensured double indemnity by sending the article for comment to a) any individual named therein; b) the SBC press office; and c) the SBC legal team.

      • admin Reply

        April 1, 2013 at 6:33 pm

        I wont have done that as I personally have never published an article about Scarborough Borough Council. Infact I have very little interest in politics at all, other than to ensure that there is a place like this where people can publish articles and debate local politics, thats where my interest ends. Most of my contributions to the site are in terms of local photographs and articles of local interest such as historical or informational articles. Can I ask if you speak as a legal person or just someone commenting on something they don’t actually have the qualifications to talk about ?

        • Hugo Reply

          April 6, 2013 at 9:06 am

          Surely Glenn as the webmaster you are acting as an editor? You chose which articles go up and which don’t?

  36. David C Reply

    April 1, 2013 at 3:43 pm

    Interesting implication by Carole Gerada the contact from Lisa Dixon may be a forgery! Astonishing if it is not, that it so badly constructed it could lead someone who knows what they are talking about to suspect so! We shall see.

    Whatever, it remains critical that the substance of the complaint must be made clear, otherwise how can anyone be expected to respond? The letter (from Lisa Dixon) does not contain a single indication what the actual complaint is. I would have expected any such letter from ‘a solicitor’ to detail clearly exactly what it was they were complaining about. Instead we get generalisations about the Real Whitby site. We are also aware that those questions that have been asked have been made publicly enough, both through the proper channels at SBC and through the articles on Real Whitby. SBC have the opportunity to deny allegations, or answer questions anywhere and everywhere, including on the site. As far as I can tell, SBC have not sought to answer the questions or to deny consequent implications of wrongdoing, other than to state nothing wrong was done in the case of the ‘double-dipping’ scandal. Taking regard of Nolan’s Seven Principles of public life, it is clearly apparent that it is wrong. It does not have to be illegal in the strict sense; it is wrong, and elected representatives should not do it. The standards they should answer to are much higher, and if they do not, they should consider their positions.

  37. Al Roberts Reply

    April 1, 2013 at 5:06 pm

    It would be difficult to provide a clearer response than that provided by Nigel, to the claims contained within the letter from Lisa Dixon.

    Had Lisa acted when she first became aware of the defamatory articles she refers to, she would have done a great service to those who she now seeks to defend.
    Indeed by not acting immediately she became aware of any defamatory articles by Nigel, whether by his intention or his innocence, Lisa has played an equally important part in adding to the embarrassment and defamation of SBC.

    In his articles Nigel generally illustrates the reasoning behind any of his opinions, often by reference to information freely available in the public domain.
    Lisa is failing in her duty to her employers, SBC, and more importantly to those like myself who fund SBC, by not advising Nigel of any misinterpretation of information that he believes to be factual, that may have lead to the formation of his opinions.
    If Lisa were to clear the air by stating where or how the articles written by Nigel are defamatory, then I am sure he would apologise and go away.

  38. O Realey Reply

    April 1, 2013 at 7:54 pm

    Dear Mr Ward

    I from time to time will access the Real Whitby website to see what articles both yourself and your associates have produced. I started to do this following your somewhat outrageous assault on the Whitby Regatta, which I have supported for many years, which you undertook only because it is linked to Jane Kenyon whom you have an issue with.

    I see that you are now threatened by some form of legal action by SBC due to your accusations and comments about numerous councillors and officers.

    In your article ‘R.I.P. SBC? – Nigel responds’ you describe your current physical problems and how they have been made worse by this situation. You state in your reply to Lisa Dixon that “the content of your present letter leaves me shocked, intimidated, frightened and utterly in the dark.”

    Does it ever occur to you the effect on those who you have accused and defamed in the past? It is not long since Councillor Joe Plant sent you an email at 4.40 in the morning, would you consider this to be normal activity or perhaps it may be that this local councillor is also suffering stress and cannot sleep due what you write “IN THE PUBLIC INTEREST” He has asked you to refer what you accuse him of to the police but to no avail.

    I am not saying that those in public office have, like ourselves, have to act in a proper and open manner and those that are found guilty of doing otherwise should be dealt with accordingly however, if those who are appointed to look into matters of this nature find there is no case to answer then you either provide further evidence to the contrary or move on. To some degree you reap what you sow.

    You also state that provision has been made by the webmaster for anyone – elected members and paid public servants not excluded – to respond to the articles (positively or negatively, as they are so moved). I hope therefore that the webmaster, whoever she or he is, does not restrict this response to your article.

    • Tim Thorne Reply

      April 1, 2013 at 10:55 pm

      Joe Plant and a number of other dual-hatted Borough and County Councillors are bemoaning the criticism heaped upon them by people writing on this website, me included.

      They are rightly criticised for receiving two lots of Broadband allowance from the public purse when they should only be receiving one. When this fact was pointed out to them, they didn’t seek to rectify the flaw in the system and make sure this waste of public money was stopped.

      Not one of them considers that act morally wrong nor have they paid the money back.

      It is now election time and time to pay the piper. Voters are asking questions about their Broadband allowance and I’m guessing they’re not receiving a satisfactory reply. You made your bed, now you get to lie in it.

      I suspect this is one of the reasons Real Whitby is coming under pressure at the moment.

      • Hugo Reply

        April 1, 2013 at 11:01 pm

        Inform the police. This is fraud.

        • Tim Thorne Reply

          April 1, 2013 at 11:38 pm

          Hugo, please detail your legal qualifications so we can determine if your statement is accurate.

          • Hugo Reply

            April 1, 2013 at 11:49 pm

            Studied law at post graduate level, but not a lawyer.

            I can assure you though, that claiming for the same thing twice is, if done in a company, is fraud. If they’ve used the same invoice for the claim then it is fraud. Now, whether it would get to the CPS and they would claim its not in the public interest to prosecute (too expensive) is another matter. It would however be extremely embarrassing for the councillor s concerned.

            • Tim Thorne Reply

              April 2, 2013 at 12:34 am

              “I can assure you though, that claiming for the same thing twice is, if done in a company, is fraud.”

              Scarborough Borough Council stated that they gave the allowance to everybody automatically and that the Councillors are entitled to receive both allowances for the same thing from two different local Authorities.

              “It would however be extremely embarrassing for the councillor s concerned.”

              The Councillors concerned are already embarrassed about it, which is why some of them are refusing to discuss the matter with their ward constituents.

              • Hugo Reply

                April 2, 2013 at 1:00 am

                If they are legally entitled to it twice automatically, if its legal, it’s morally repugnant but legal. You have to remember that some of these local,council positions are doing thankless tasks without a lot of remuneration.

              • rod mathers Reply

                April 2, 2013 at 1:35 pm

                “I can assure you though, that claiming for the same thing twice is, if done in a company, is fraud.”

                That’s interesting. The last time I checked, SBC is a company. Twenty-something of them in fact. The Corruption Busters might want to look into that. http://www.duport.co.uk/

                • David C Reply

                  April 2, 2013 at 1:50 pm

                  “I can assure you though, that claiming for the same thing twice is, if done in a company, is fraud.”

                  Well it’s a bit more complicated than that. Unlike a Company SBC itself has NOT been presented with the same bill twice, an entirely separate ‘company’ NYCC has been presented with the same bill. However they aren’t actually claims – they are allowances made by both bodies for the same thing. The legal and compliance officers do not seem to get this point and that’s why it’s so important to apply Nolan’s Seven Principles of Public Service (which they are supposed to be signed up to.) It may not be strictly illegal but it’s most certainly wrong.

            • Trip Wire Reply

              April 2, 2013 at 12:35 am

              With your legal hat on, can you tell us, is the letter to Nigel from SBC standard practice in such cases. Would you not expect them to identify what they believe he has done wrong,when and where. Are they allowed to make such broad and generalised statements or should Nigel be expecting another more detailed letter.

              • Hugo Reply

                April 2, 2013 at 12:53 am

                I would suspect that they are firing a shot across the bows. When they are serious, you’ll get a letter from lawyers acting for them, or their legal department. I do not think a council would want to get into a legal dispute of this kind. If there is any foundation to the allegations then it would only serve to give publicity. However, if the council are in the right, and specific officers or councillors have been named with allegations (not just name calling), then damage to their professional reputation and their standing in the community could well be looked upon very dimly by a court. However, defending such an action is very expensive. The council has deep pockets, Mr West probably less so. I am sure he would be advised, if it gets serious, to come to a compromise: a payment to a charity (amount undisclosed) and an apology in the Real Whitby. Gentleman’s honour satisfied all round, and no duel and blood letting.

                I think though, if Mr West or the publisher saw a lawyer, they’d be advised to avoid allegations that they cannot substantiate. The national press get away with making wild statements because they’re the ones with the corporate lawyers and deep pockets.

                I would say though that following the above advice is also morally correct. Unsubstantiated allegations are stressful to the accused, and no doubt some at least are honest people doing their perhaps inadequate best.

  39. Jackie Greaves Reply

    April 1, 2013 at 11:03 pm

    Nigel, As you know, there are some people who never want to see the truth even if it stares them in the face. If they subsequently attack you, be strong. Take no notice of what they say. We know that you only ever speak the truth. We know that you are fighting against the corrupt, the dishonest, the selfish. Hold you head up high and take the respect that so many people have for you. Thank you Nigel.

  40. admin Reply

    April 2, 2013 at 12:15 am

  41. Tom Brodrick Reply

    April 2, 2013 at 2:57 am

    @Hugo
    That’s an excellent point Hugo that really simplifies a double-dipper.
    “that claiming for the same thing twice is, if done in a company, is fraud. If they’ve used the same invoice for the claim then it is fraud.”
    and
    “If they are legally entitled to it twice automatically, if its legal, it’s morally repugnant but legal.” but still defrauding the public.
    And as a councillor, Joe Plant has committed both, for something he laid out for approx a quarter of what he paid for, a service I’ve no doubt enjoyed by most of the family.
    On top which begs the question, how much of that profit has he declared to HMRC as undeclared income for income tax purpose?
    Councillors work at times can be a thankless task, is that so? Also most gratifying.
    But at the end of the day they did not stumble by the position, they banged on every single door of their constituents three times, voluntarily claiming to be the best most upright person for the job!

    • Hugo Reply

      April 2, 2013 at 6:03 am

      “They banged on every single door of their constituents three times, voluntarily claiming to be the best most upright person for the job!”

      Good point.

      The thing is though that someone has asserted that they are entitled to double-dip. To quote Mandy Rice-Davies – “He would say that wouldn’t he?” It is true?

  42. Vanda Reply

    April 2, 2013 at 7:26 am

    This ‘Legal Letter’ is absurd. No council should ever threaten its residents with Legal Action.

    This Borough Council has become so institutionally introverted in furthering its own interests it needs to be abolished. It does not represent the community it is supposed to serve.

    I would not stand for Council and conduct community business whilst sitting at a table with crooks. As Nigel knows and he has copies, I have testimonies, witness statements and evidence that have not yet been published, at the witness’s request, for fear of intimidation and reprisals.

    I heard (third party) that Kenyon wanted to sue me for my complaint about her failure to declare Whitby Regatta Ltd on her register of interests.
    A Councillors conduct is open to scrutiny and criticism. That is politics.

    We should have Parish Councils that are community focused, under an umbrella Unitary Authority with officers that act appropriately.

    • Tim Thorne Reply

      April 2, 2013 at 11:52 am

      “This ‘Legal Letter’ is absurd. No council should ever threaten its residents with Legal Action.”

      Especially if it hasn’t fully consulted the councillors first!

  43. Vanda Reply

    April 2, 2013 at 7:33 am

    NB: You should be more interested in what Nigel and the ‘Corruption Busters’ do not publish!

  44. By Eck Reply

    April 2, 2013 at 9:06 am

    customer.first@scarborough.gov.uk

    Real Whitby publishes pages and pages of Nigel poking the dog with a sharp stick and the minute it growls back he comes over all queer.

    http://www.real-whitby.co.uk/tag/nigel-ward

  45. Frank Chalmers Reply

    April 2, 2013 at 10:33 am

    Well, I’m astonished at some of the stuff that Nigel and company have clearly not yet published… if this is just the tip of the iceberg, then the Titanic is indeed doomed.

    The question is: Who’s sailing the ship?

    • Tim Thorne Reply

      April 2, 2013 at 11:50 am

      I hear the captain is taking a month off.

  46. rod mathers Reply

    April 2, 2013 at 10:49 am

    The Corruption Busters have not seen my evidence yet. If they want it they only have to ask. I will be in Whitby at the weekend.

  47. Gerald Ali. Reply

    April 2, 2013 at 11:20 am

    It’s time the electors started a campaign to have — Scarborough Borough Council’s Head of Legal & Democratic Services Ms Lisa DIXON, Solicitor. – promoted by the council to be their head of publicity, promotion, personal relations and propaganda department. As a trained solicitor, she presents herself well at the ‘hands on’ work and as a practiced mouthpiece on their behalf.
    As she is getting the council known all over the north of England as well as throughout Yorkshire.
    Hopefully the electors will remember her when they go to the polls in May, she certainly is helping to convince people that ‘new blood’ is urgently needed on the council.
    ……..
    If other councillors check any allegation of corruptions, and find reasonable factuality, then they will draw away from any person implicated, which will make it hard for the culprit/s to continue as councillors.
    This will not make it hard for the council as a whole to carry out its functions, nor hinder them, but may possibly effect the culprit/s. …. Any employed by the council such as – Borough Council’s Head of Legal & Democratic Services – only has the right to make representation on behalf of the council as a whole, which is why the letter has been made to ”look’ as if thats what is being attended to….
    They have no right to make representation on behalf of individual councillors on ‘personal’ matters, if so then they overstep their contract of employment.

  48. Sarah Ledsom Reply

    April 2, 2013 at 2:29 pm

    ” What, then, is the underlying purpose of your communication other than to threaten, intimidate or bully me (and others) into silence?” That is it in a nutshell Nigel. I am so sorry to hear of your angina episode which was obviously brought on by their harassment of you, and sad to hear that was the reason for your recent absence from posting. You are such a true man of conscience and as such cannot be defeated. If only there were more of your ilk as councilors, serving their communities as diligently and honestly as you certainly do voluntarily. We all fight corruption one way or another each and every day, but none more so than your good self. You have right and truth on your side and that will see you through. Much love, Sarah x

  49. Richard Ineson Reply

    April 3, 2013 at 8:38 pm

    I cannot believe that any solicitor wrote this email/letter, I have written to Hilary and Jim asking for clarification. It must be a hoax.

  50. Richard Ineson Reply

    April 3, 2013 at 8:41 pm

    We will fight them on the beaches, we will fight them in the boozers, we will never surrender.

  51. Carole Gerada Reply

    April 3, 2013 at 8:56 pm

    Like I already mentioned earlier on this site on 1 April at 10.30am or thereabouts – I have already emailed Lisa Dixon (who is away on leave and has been since a few days before the Easter break until after the school holidays so I have not received a response yet. So I telephoned the council yesterday but had to leave a message as everyone was in a meeting but I have had no reply yet. So I visited SBC in person this morning and spoke to a very nice legal assistant who could not answer any of my questions so she took my details to get someone to call me…..and I wait for a response. So let’s see who gets a response first…..

  52. admin Reply

    April 3, 2013 at 8:59 pm

    I cant see it being a hoax Richard as mine came on headed SBC paper to my home address, if it is a hoax whoever wrote it is in serious trouble. But then again, my mate Alan H says “it has a certain persons name (you know who), written all over it”.

  53. Carole Gerada Reply

    April 3, 2013 at 9:10 pm

    I would be very interested to know who sent the comment from the generic Customer First email (SBC)and I am sure their legal team would be interested too. It may lead to the true author of the ‘Lisa Dixon’ email. Time to report it to the police, I think as it appears more and more a case of a breach of data protection and impersonation from a rattled councillor or employee.

    These people have paid out of the public’s money and therefore it is a police matter. I will report it tomorrow if I do not get a response from SBC by. 9.30am

    • admin Reply

      April 3, 2013 at 9:42 pm

      If the legal team want the ip it matches with one of the regular potash posters.

      • Tim Thorne Reply

        April 3, 2013 at 10:44 pm

        I have a feeling the regular potash poster will have come over all queer.

      • Tim Thorne Reply

        April 3, 2013 at 10:55 pm

        Did the regular potash poster use a scarborough.gov.uk email address in the email field to leave the comment?

        • admin Reply

          April 3, 2013 at 11:37 pm

          He used this one Tim :

          customer.first@scarborough.gov.uk

          Same person has posted a lot of comments on the potash articles. I will give the ip to SBC legal department if they want it.

          • Tim Thorne Reply

            April 3, 2013 at 11:46 pm

            I saw the email address in the article as well. Was it put in the email field and the article too?

            • admin Reply

              April 3, 2013 at 11:52 pm

              Yes Tim It was

              • Tim Thorne Reply

                April 4, 2013 at 12:00 am

                UK ISP too?

                • admin Reply

                  April 4, 2013 at 12:28 am

                  Looks that way Tim, I checked him out and the majority come through a proxy server in Western Australia. However he has tripped up on a couple of comments, poppit.

  54. David C Reply

    April 3, 2013 at 9:25 pm

    Carole Gerada wrote “I have already emailed Lisa Dixon (who is away on leave and has been since a few days before the Easter break until after the school holidays….”

    A few days before the Easter Break? 29th was Good Friday, so this email is timed late on the day before. That’s not a few days before the Easter Break. Is it confirmed she was away then?

  55. Carole Gerada Reply

    April 4, 2013 at 7:22 am

    Please could you provide all the information regarding the IP address, etc directly to the police or contact me by sending me the information to pass to the police for them to investigate further. If someone is impersonating SBC legal department we must report it. A lot of time and energy has been expended in debating the authenticity of the source of the information and clearly SBC are not prioritising a response.

    The police will most likely want to obtain the copy of the letter Nigel received to establish its authenticity and hopefully we may get a result on its origin and link to SBC contact who instigated the comments and correspondence.

    I am willing to speak to the police but I am not the one who received the letter and I am not privy to IP source, etc. I will need to direct police to this site so they can interview contributors to see if a cyber crime has been committed.

  56. Nigel Ward Reply

    April 4, 2013 at 7:44 am

    Councillor Ian Havelock, of Whitby Town (Parish) Council, whom I thank for his good offices in this extraordinary affair, assures me that when he telephoned SBC Legal yesterday morning (3rd April 2013), he was told that “legal and support services were unable to confirm that the letter concerning Real Whitby etc. had been sent”.

    He then spoke to Deputy Chief Exec Officer Hilary JONES, who was also in the dark. However, she did email him later in the day, saying:

    “I have checked with legal services and there has been a genuine letter sent from our legal department.”

    Quite why Legal had different information for Hilary JONES than that which they offered to Councillor Ian HAVELOCK remains unclear.

    However, I think we may draw three provisional conclusions from the foregoing:

    1) the letters are genuine.
    2) the letters seem to have been sent outside of the normal processes of authorisation.
    3) Lisa DIXON seems to have been promoted beyond her competence.

  57. secretsqu Reply

    April 4, 2013 at 5:41 pm

    “Please could you provide all the information regarding the IP address, etc directly to the police or contact me by sending me the information to pass to the police for them to investigate further.”

    As a poster in the comments sections of this website, this request concerns me. If somebody requested my IP details from admin, I would expect an instant refusal and a willingness to protect my identity, as is my right. Any breach of this rightly exposes the requestor and provider to claims from the injured party. A Norwich Pharmacal or similar court order is a different matter.

    I’m sure that admin would not be so naive to comply with such a request.

    • Tim Thorne Reply

      April 4, 2013 at 5:54 pm

      “If somebody requested my IP details from admin, I would expect an instant refusal and a willingness to protect my identity, as is my right.”

      I doubt Glenn will comply with Carole’s request. If SBC request the IP details of the person who used the scarborough.gov.uk domain in their email field then he may be under some obligation to provide it. I believe he may be entitled to charge a data processing fee too IIRC.

    • AnarchyUK Reply

      April 4, 2013 at 6:38 pm

      I concur, this has nothing to do with the Potash Peoples it is Borough Business.

      Anyhow, Potash Bashing is good sport and whilst some of the blows have been drawn quite low, from both sides, no real malicious damage to RW has come from that quarter.

      Perhaps Glen should be appointed Ambassador to the United Nations?

  58. secretsqu Reply

    April 4, 2013 at 6:34 pm

    Yes, I agree, but I’m surprised that Carole requested this info on a public forum, given her offer to help Nigel out with legal advice.

    Probably an oversight.

  59. Carole Gerada Reply

    April 4, 2013 at 6:54 pm

    Please accept my apologies if I have unwittingly asked for information which will provide the police with information as to where the origin of the emails from SBC arise from. I will leave it up to SBC to instruct the police to carry out investigations as to the person accessing their email system to send such a concerning and upsetting email to Nigel. I know that Nigel’s friends are equally upset on his behalf, I certainly am and cannot abide for one more minute knowing that someone anonymous can cause such an upset and be allowed to continue and no one is willing to put their head above the parapet and account for their cowardly actions.

    My comments are open and accountable and in order for me to help anyone I need to have the facts to hand.

    I am here to help anyone who wants my help but I only know how to be open and accountable in doing so.

    I will step back from this until and if Nigel wants my help. I will see through any outcomes which my questioning so far may result in. However as at this time I have received no response or communication from anyone directly and only have contributions to this site for information.

    If anyone wishes to speak to me my contact details are widely publicised and I only use my own names – Carole Gerada – so that anyone needing to contact me is able to. I wish you all the best and hope you will contact me directly rather than pass comments about me on this or any other site.

  60. secretsqu Reply

    April 4, 2013 at 7:00 pm

    Carole, my comments were meant as a backhanded piece of advice to you, not a criticism.

    I believe that admin would know that he cannot send out or share IP addresses to somebody that requests it either privately, or on a public forum. There are legal procedures and everyone of us that post on sites such as this should be thankful that there are.

  61. Carole Gerada Reply

    April 4, 2013 at 7:18 pm

    Thank you for explaining and I have taken your comments as advice. I do get rather passionate in my pursuit of justice and appreciate being reeled in by like minded people.

  62. mac1210 Reply

    April 5, 2013 at 7:23 am

    Why are Tim and Nigel getting so jumpy? If Nigel comments are true than he should relish this as it will bring all of his findings out in a court of law…isn’t that what he wanted?

    I certainly wouldn’t want to be in their shoes if it is not 100% true though, and I would hope that they would have an example made of them if it did turn out to be a load of rubbish, as it is unacceptable to put such things in the public domain if they are untrue.
    But I am sure Tim and Nigel both confirmed these allegations prior to publishing, which ever way it goes it does make an interesting case.

    • Trip Wire Reply

      April 5, 2013 at 11:27 am

      Looking at the way Nigel and Tim are handling themselves I would say they are enjoying every minute of it. A huge publicity opportunity handed to them 1 month before a major election in the county, Local and national press crawling all over it, town council debating it, town councilors in uproar. The boys look like they have gone to town on this one and any court case with the Borough Council will only highlight their case further.

    • Concerned of Scarborough Reply

      April 5, 2013 at 4:21 pm

      Comment removed for breach of site policy. Usage of proxy.

  63. andyb28m Reply

    April 5, 2013 at 3:52 pm

    I may be in a minority of one, but I find some of the recent developments emanating from “admin” to be deeply disturbing. We have had a thread appearing to assume that the “Lisa Dixon” e-mail is a fake. On April 3 “admin” made the unsolicited post: “If the legal team want the ip it matches with one of the regular potash posters”. Good to see that data protection is in firm hands around here. And in the process “admin” smears the potash debate.

    Later the same day “admin” then adds: “Same person has posted a lot of comments on the potash articles. I will give the ip to SBC legal department if they want it”.

    Fortunately Secretsq stepped into this debate with wise words of caution. And Tim Thorne piped up with: “I doubt Glenn will comply with Carole’s request”. Yeah, right Tim!.Until he was put straight it seems that “admin” was begging to breach data protection regulations and in the process smear with innuendo the potash debate.

    A disturbing example of “admin” being a rather large part of the story. I wonder if my data is safe now that I have posted a critical comment on the way you do things in “real” Whitby? I hope you have good legal advice.

    • Major Minority Reply

      April 5, 2013 at 4:33 pm

      IP: 199.48.147.41
      Decimal: 3341849385
      Hostname: tor-exit-router41-readme.formlessnetworking.net
      ISP: Applied Operations, LLC
      Organization: Formless Networking, LLC
      Services: Confirmed proxy server

    • Tim Thorne Reply

      April 5, 2013 at 5:11 pm

      “And in the process “admin” smears the potash debate.”

      You’re being overdramatic. A ‘regular potash poster’ has used a scarborough.gov.uk email address to poke fun at Nigel. It appears they didn’t have permission to use that domain name. So why all the fuss?

  64. Tom Brodrick Reply

    April 5, 2013 at 4:58 pm

    I have absolutely no doubt that admin will treat the issue of IP Addresses with the utmost integrity. I’m also certain that admin will allow andyb28m to post any critical comment he so chooses. “I hope you have good legal advice”! The laws are perfectly clear to all concerned, perhaps andyb28m could elaborate and inform the site admin where he/she think that laws have been broken? I personally don’t visit web sites or read newspapers that have a dubious history.
    It’s better that people add their points of view and enter into the debates than attack the editor. If you disagree with the site or the motives of the editor then why bother taking such an interest in the site for that reason alone. Hopefully we will be reading more articles and points of view, inc reasonable criticism, from andyb28m. This site is as much yours as it is the editors should you choose to top the balance towards your personal points of view.

    • andy blatchford Reply

      April 6, 2013 at 7:05 am

      Tom Brodrick: “I have absolutely no doubt that admin will treat the issue of IP Addresses with the utmost integrity”.

      Let us hope that is the case as of NOW. If so, that is largely thanks to Secretsq’s timely intervention. Before then admin was more than cavalier in offering up what should be protected data to all and sundry. For example:

      “IF THE LEGAL TEAM WANT the ip it matches with one of the regular potash posters.

      “He used this one Tim : customer.xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
      Same person has posted a lot of comments on the potash articles. I WILL GIVE the ip to SBC legal department if they want it.

      “Looks that way Tim, I CHECKED HIM OUT and the majority come through a proxy server in Western Australia. However he has tripped up on a couple of comments, poppit”.

      This is all clearly in contravention of current data protection legislation in the UK. I am merely suggesting that anyone who breaks the law should have access to good legal advice in case they might need it.

      • Tim Thorne Reply

        April 6, 2013 at 2:24 pm

        “This is all clearly in contravention of current data protection legislation in the UK.”

        Er, no. When someone is probing your infrastructure, you can take any steps you feel are necessary to secure your site. The data protection act doesn’t apply to something which could very well be an illegal act.

        “I am merely suggesting that anyone who breaks the law should have access to good legal advice in case they might need it.”

        Good advice, but your comment would be better directed at the ‘regular potash poster’.

        • andyb28m Reply

          April 6, 2013 at 5:05 pm

          Hi Tim. The issue here is one of data protection. The actions of “admin” have been so cavalier as to suggest non-compliance with the requirements of the information commissioner.

          Perhaps “admin” can confirm that “real” Whitby has notified the information commissioner of its existence. If not, why not?

  65. Tom Brodrick Reply

    April 5, 2013 at 5:00 pm

    tilt the balance

  66. Vanda Inman Reply

    April 5, 2013 at 5:31 pm

    Compare this site with the investor discussion sites and this site is pretty tame by comparison.

    I was out petitioning support on another front the other day and some 14 year old lad said, “I’d like to sign that petition but my opinion doesn’t really count”.

    Crikey, what the hell is this country coming to when the kids feel so dis-empowered and dispossessed?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1kw_d3d0XAo

    BTW- funniest thing I heard today “Some of the technology that Sirius are proposing hasn’t even been on Star Trek yet!” lol.

  67. Hugo Reply

    April 5, 2013 at 6:54 pm

    Vanda

    Can you tell us your engineering qualifications, and number of years mining experience and which parts of the mining proposal is, in your experience yet to be invented? We will balance your qualifications against theYork Potash engineers with hundreds of years combined experience who say it is possible.

    Hugo.

    • Vanda Reply

      April 5, 2013 at 8:54 pm

      Hugo, Can you tell me how many operational mines Sirius have?

      • Hugo Reply

        April 5, 2013 at 9:10 pm

        How many mines does Sirius Minerals have.? Zero.
        How many mines do you have? Zero.
        How many mining qualifications do you have? Zero.
        How many years experience do you have in mining? Zero.
        How many mining engineers does Sirius Employ? 30 or more?
        How many hundred years collective experience do they have? Many.
        How many mines did Fortescue Minerals have when it was set up by the senior people in Sirius Minerals? Answer zero.
        How many billions is Fortescue worth today? Hundreds.
        How many billions has Forescue added to the Australian balance of payments? Hundreds.

        You haven’t answered the question as to your qualifications that give credibility to your scorn for the engineers and plans of Sirius.

        Are you going to repeat your belief that Sirius is all just a share scam by the Sirius Directors? Something I do not bieve at all.

  68. mac1210 Reply

    April 5, 2013 at 8:14 pm

    I didn’t realize that spock was looking to mine potash, did that comment also come from a 14 year old?

    • Vanda Reply

      April 5, 2013 at 9:06 pm

      You still using your student railcard?

      • mac1210 Reply

        April 5, 2013 at 10:09 pm

        Nope, are you fiddling expenses for yours?

  69. Hugo Reply

    April 5, 2013 at 8:36 pm

    “Crikey, what the hell is this country coming to when the kids feel so dis-empowered and dispossessed?”

    Yeah, we all yearn for the good old days when even a 10 year old could vote.

    As for feeling dispossessed, had someone knicked his bike?

  70. secretsqu Reply

    April 5, 2013 at 9:37 pm

    “BTW- funniest thing I heard today “Some of the technology that Sirius are proposing hasn’t even been on Star Trek yet!” lol.”

    Please elaborate on the above point!!!

    You are really doing yourself and those against this project no favours by your mocking. Not what I would expect, given that you are a secretary for the Labour Party. My view of you is changing.

    I’ll say no more, even though I should.

  71. Vanda Reply

    April 5, 2013 at 11:44 pm

    My view has never been fixed.

    And Hugo, if you would like to publish that private conversation in full and in context then please go ahead, be my guest.

    And Squirrel, I will keep asking questions. Just to keep flogging that old horse, it was the old horse that invited you all here?

    And, I really don’t mean to wind you up or mock but why is the Chair of the NIA on the BoD?

    And, FYI (again) I am not Secretary of the CLP.

    But really, why are you all so miserable and dull?

    • Hugo Reply

      April 6, 2013 at 9:13 am

      Vanda
      There was no private conversation. The information was in a contribution to this website. I would guess it is still there if I go to look for it.
      I keep asking the questions because the point I am making is that you are saying that Sirius lack an engineering base which they plainly don’t; and that their technology is impractical.

  72. Vanda Reply

    April 6, 2013 at 7:40 am

    “Please elaborate on the above point!!!”

    I was asked how they expect to transport all that Potash through such a small pipe, also said he had read details on using the water from the aquifers to supply the electric power….. hence the beam me up Scotty.

    So, two points Squirrel, firstly, if you have the technical detail then please provide a link.

    Secondly, why are people asking me about the Potash Project? Is there a public information service for all things Potash? Don’t Sirius have a Potash hotline? And further, why aren’t people asking them?

    • Hugo Reply

      April 6, 2013 at 9:26 am

      The electricity supply for the pumps comes from two separate cables off the national grid, as you well know. These are powerful cables, and it has been acknowledged by the power companies, that there is the spare capacity in the local network.

  73. David C Reply

    April 6, 2013 at 8:34 am

    Aquifers plenty of information on the web, for example

    http://www.mpoweruk.com/geothermal_energy.htm

  74. David C Reply

    April 6, 2013 at 8:40 am

    Also try

    http://www.groundwateruk.org/downloads/4%20Busby.pdf

    Shows exactly where the heat sources are , e.g. in North East Yorkshire

    • Vanda Reply

      April 6, 2013 at 5:40 pm

      Thank David C, that looks pretty impressive and far from simple.

  75. secretsqu Reply

    April 6, 2013 at 9:36 am

    “And, I really don’t mean to wind you up or mock but why is the Chair of the NIA on the BoD?”

    I’m not sure of the relevance, but why shouldn’t he be on the BOD?

    The incumbent NIA Chairman stepped down creating an open position. Given that Lord Hutton was the former Secretary of State for Energy and at the forefront of the UK’s Energy Policy, I would suggest that he is the ideal candidate with the relevant experience for such a position, would you not agree Vanda? Or would you suggest Scotty from Star Trek should have won the position?

  76. secretsqu Reply

    April 6, 2013 at 9:42 am

    I was asked how they expect to transport all that Potash through such a small pipe, also said he had read details on using the water from the aquifers to supply the electric power….. hence the beam me up Scotty.

    So, two points Squirrel, firstly, if you have the technical detail then please provide a link.

    Secondly, why are people asking me about the Potash Project? Is there a public information service for all things Potash? Don’t Sirius have a Potash hotline? And further, why aren’t people asking them?
    ==============
    Vanda, Hugo has answered one of your questions already.

    The technical details for the pipeline are freely available in the planning application docs. That’s the public information service that you refer to, so I would suggest a cursory glance at this detail would have negated your need to ask a rather basic question.

    Be careful about believing everything that you hear from people on the street irrespective of their comic appeal.

  77. secretsqu Reply

    April 6, 2013 at 9:50 am

    I do apologise, you are of course, Secretary of Scarborough & Whitby Constituency Labour Party.

  78. Stakesby Legs Reply

    April 6, 2013 at 4:48 pm

    The more you post the more the world sees how much your bleeding, squizzers.

    • Hugo Reply

      April 6, 2013 at 5:28 pm

      The word “squizzers” has a rather disgusting sexual meaning which is totally inappropriate. I therefore assume you are inventing words. While William Shakespeare got away with it, you’re not in his league. I therefore respectfully suggest that if you wish to convey meaning you use standard grammar and vocabulary that is in dictionaries.

  79. secretsqu Reply

    April 6, 2013 at 5:16 pm

    Why do you post? For the love of it, for the sake of it, to see your name in print? Why do poster’s post?

    Lol.

  80. anarchyUK Reply

    April 6, 2013 at 11:59 pm

  81. Richard Ineson Reply

    May 1, 2013 at 1:12 pm

    In the Yorkshire Post of the 27th April, the Prime Minister, David Cameron, is quoted as saying, ‘If you want to keep Council Tax down, then you vote Conservative and get good value for money’.
    I wonder if any of our local Conservative Councillors, or our Members of Parliament can explain how it comes about that we, the residents of Whitby, pay higher Council Taxes than the residents of Kensington and Chelsea, Wandsworth, and Westminster?
    Further, No.18, Carlton House Terrace, London, SW1Y 5AF, has just been put on the market for £250 million; the Council Tax due on this house, it being in Band H in the City of Westminster, is £1361.48p that’s right, thirteen hundred and sixty one pounds, forty eight pence.
    Does this seem just and fair?
    Mrs. Thatcher said that Council Tax charges were always lower in areas where Conservatives were in control of the local Councils, as they were more efficient, so what happened in our area, efficiency and fiscal prudence out to lunch?
    Conservatives in control, but spending apparently out of control, in North Yorkshire, how has this been allowed to happen?
    I think that we should be told.
    I have greater interest than most in this subject as I live in what is probable the smallest habited dwelling in Whitby, it is less than ten feet wide, it has no garden, nowhere to hang any washing, nowhere to park a car, the house is in Band D and Band B Council Tax in Whitby is £1229. 36p, if I lived in Westminster, (average weekly wage £650.00) the Council Tax, for a Band B property would be £529.47
    Here is a comparative list of Council Tax charges, relating to various Councils, which I think, may surprise some of your readers.
    Whitby Council Tax 2013-2014
    Band A £1053.75 Band D £1580.62 Band H £3161.24
    Kensington and Chelsea Council Tax 2013-2014
    Band A £714.43 Band D £1071.65 Band H £2143.30
    Wandsworth Council Tax 2013 – 2014
    Band A £475.74 Band D £713.61 Band H £1427.23
    Westminster Council Tax 2013-2014
    Band A £453.83 Band D £680.74 Band H£1361.48
    The whole Council Tax system, as demonstrated by the foregoing figures, seems to me, to be corrupt, and riddled with unfairness, and is in urgent need of reform. What are our local Conservative Councillors and Conservative Members of Parliament doing to encourage the government to reform this iniquitous tax which penalises those living in deprived areas, with high unemployment, such as Whitby, whilst favouring those who dwell in the most prosperous areas of the U.K such as Westminster?

  82. Gary Ludlow Reply

    May 1, 2013 at 1:15 pm

    Ask Joe Plant, he’s a councillor.
    Ask Jim Dillon, Hiliary Jones and Mr Archer why they pay themselves £350,000 between themselves each and every year.
    Three years ONE MILLION POUNDS, who are they kidding.
    When the Rydale Chief exec can sack all three of them and there would be no change in front line services.

  83. David C Reply

    May 1, 2013 at 2:05 pm

    I think you will find the reason for this discrepancy is actually very simple. In 2011/12 Westminster City Council received 81.6% budget support from Central Government Formula Grant. £309.82 per head was paid over to the Greater London Authority bringing down their own support to a mere 69.47%.

    I think you will find NYCC receives nothing like this level of support. This is the reason Westminster’s Council Tax is so low (and other London Boroughs) – it is nothing to do with the efficiency of Conservative Councils.

    See http://transact.westminster.gov.uk/docstores/publications_store/Accounts/1010121435.pdf

    • Gary Ludlow Reply

      May 1, 2013 at 2:43 pm

      That was a very efficient concise reply David. What about those Borough’s within NYCC?

  84. David C Reply

    May 5, 2013 at 4:59 pm

    You will find the information here Gary.

    http://www.scarborough.gov.uk/default.aspx?page=17365

    SBC’s budget of £17.6m is supported by £5.6m Revenue Support Grant, £3.8m redistributed business rates leaving £8.2m in Council Tax, plus another £37.4m to go to NYCC, £7.2m to the PCC and £2.2m to Fire & Rescue Services.

    Need we look further for reasons?

    • Tom Brodrick Reply

      May 6, 2013 at 12:52 pm

      Thank you David, I don’t think it’s about looking for reasons. There’s always a reason for everything.
      What Richard Ineson is pointing out is how unfair it is.
      Quite right too.
      We should ALL be paying exactly the same amount by Band across the whole of the UK.
      Simple

  85. David C Reply

    May 6, 2013 at 1:05 pm

    I couldn’t agree more – there needs to be a complete reassessment of Council Tax

  86. Tom Brown Reply

    May 6, 2013 at 6:44 pm

    Al togezzer nou ve shal offercum der naztich EURO obertek of der Britischer plas kalled england mit der schmal ‘E’ unles ve al vork togezzer fur ein change Das iss ‘CHANGE’ in English. Too many activists in Whitby will not dream of working together . Me, Nigel, Tom Broderick and the women who wishes to make a name for herself in the Helredale road area. Divided we fall.
    Gott vordommer

  87. vanda Reply

    May 6, 2013 at 7:16 pm

    Tom, one of me top tunes: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fLp63WBV-Ic

  88. vanda Reply

    May 6, 2013 at 7:47 pm

    ok , here’s another one just for taking the mick: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NNNR8UX7oKk

  89. Tom Brown Reply

    June 2, 2013 at 7:18 pm

    Sorry Vanda perhaps Im too thick!

  90. Vanda Reply

    June 2, 2013 at 8:12 pm

    You a ‘weetabix’ Tom, never !! try throwing one of these http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SR6iYWJxHqs at these people – http://www.blackswanplc.com/index.php/home/the-swans-blog

    Live long and prosper! lol


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