Spewing News ( Regurgitated)

Pravda 2

As ever we get a sense of deja vu when it comes to Wirral Council and following yesterday’s story about their plans for a monthly publication we recall a story we ran in March 2014 .


As you can see the story recounted the Birkenhead Constituency Committee’s plan to publish a quarterly newsletter. We can recall they subsequently published a really woeful effort but the interesting aspect was at the time the Council’s Head of Legal Surjit Poor, sorry Tour  was a bit jittery about the proposal to publish 4 newsletters.

Minutes of the meeting state:

“The Constituency Manager updated the Committee on the latest position in relation to the newsletter for Birkenhead and indicated that there may be some legal implications that needed to be further explored prior to publication and circulation. 

The Head of Legal and Member Services advised the Committee that there was a need to ensure that the newsletter would not breech (sic) any aspects of the Code of Recommended Practice on Local Authority Publicity (the Code) and suggested that the decision on this be deferred and brought back to the next meeting of the Committee”


The position seems to be that originally, Tour questioned such a publication from a legal standpoint, but has since come over to backing it (hmmm …..  we wonder why?) and not just a quarterly publication but one which comes out every month.We understand that he was just one of a number of council officers who knew they were on dodgy ground on this one but as ever caved in to “he who must be obeyed” – Frank Field, the Chair of the Birkenhead Constituency Committee.

The Code that Tour refer to permits 4 publications per year.  So has Tour now signed off on a report going to Cabinet on Monday that is either unlawful or at the very least against government policy?. If 4 publications was a bit dodgy how does 12 publications a year stack up?.

Under the circumstances might we suggest there’s another Code that Tour should be re-acquainting himself with. Just sayin’.

Further confirmation that Wirral Council (and particularly Tour) know they’re on dodgy ground is confirmed in the Cabinet report fronted by Councillor Matthew Patrick (who’s picture at the front of the report makes Labour’s teen sensation Councillor Warren Ward look positively aged and decrepit) . Here you can read how councillors and council officers tie themselves in legal knots trying  to define the newsletter/newspaper/newssheet they are calling “Wirral Life”– yes, that’s the genius title that they want to call it – and of course we’re already calling it “Wirral Lies” so it suits us fine.

Click to access CABINET%20REPORT%20-%20Keeping%20Residents%20Informed%2027%20June%202016%20FINAL.pdf

Their justification for the publication is as follows :

What that review indicates is that having regard to a code or guidance does not mean that it has to be followed, but if an authority is to depart from it, then it needs to recognise that that is what it is doing, and to have formulated reasons for doing so. The extent to which those reasons need merely be ones that are Wednesbury reasonable on the one hand, or must attain a certain standard of cogency or convincingness on the other, depends in part upon how fundamental is the departure from the guidance, and in part upon the statutory context (e.g. whether the subject-matter of the guidance deals with fundamental matters such as personal liberty, and whether its content has the approval of Parliament). 

Whilst we laughed out loud at the line “must attain a certain standard  of cogency or convincingness” – seriously how much do they get paid to write this bilge?- we think the reference to Wednesbury is particularly telling. As we suggested in yesterday’s post Wirral Council could be heading for a legal challenge in the form of a  Judicial Review as the test for the Wednesbury Principle is that “the decision -maker came to a conclusion so unreasonable that no reasonable authority could ever have come to it” .

And if that isn’t a desccription of Wirral Council’s modus operandi we don’t know what is!. Having said all that local media insiders aren’t sweating on this one and think the proposal could well be following in the footsteps of Wirral Council’s  Manager for Communications and Marketing  Kevin MacCallum by performing a disappearing act.



7 thoughts on “Spewing News ( Regurgitated)

  1. I support the Council’s newsletter proposal. A maximum of only 27% of the residents of Birkenhead & Tranmere Ward receive a copy of the Wirral Globe (according to the Globe’s own distribution figures). As this is currently the only publication that the Council uses to publish official notices, the vast majority of residents of this Ward do not see them. How can this be good for local democracy? Any reasonable proposal to redress this situation is good news as far as I am concerned.

    • Only a Brighton Street wannabe could sit at a perfectly innocent keyboard, minding it’s own business, and come up with that.

  2. Phillip Barton the council have a website,facebook and twitter page and access to local press, i would be in favour of a council magazine if it was objective and addressed the real issues of its workforce and Wirral public but there is no way it will be like that.
    It will be the normal bullshit with Phil Davies gruesome smiling red face on the cover with amazing headlines like his 20/20 vision,another call centre,wirral waters and Birkenhead generation..again..the first 200 million didnt work.
    I would much prefer £240,000 a year to be spent on frontline services not as a propaganda pamphlet for our council led cabal

  3. Every so often I get a small window of opportunity to transmit something sensible, thoughtful, meaningful and true. More often than not the opportunity emerges when I’m sober, free of the debilitating affects of diazepam after nibbling on the dreadful debilitating psilocybin mushrooms. And the visions and emerging thoughts my addled brain harvests are no worse or less valid than those that Eric gets when he’s minding his own business when another pile of rancid pigswill comes tumbling off his service delivery outcomes conveyor belt that compels him to howl, ‘hoorah! Yet more shit I can share with the rest of humanity’.
    And just like this paragraph of shit I’ve just authored, made up of vowels and consonants and arranged into a sequence of words that say absolutely nothing worthwhile but can still be read and made sense of, it’s exactly what the Council do to explain to us what they’re doing, why they’re doing it, how much it’ll cost to do it to us, what joys we’ll all receive once we’ve had it and what they’ll do next if we dare to argue for something else. You see, they’re no better than me. They write absolute rubbish that might look like it’s been delivered by someone of intelligence when in reality their offerings of the written type are the work of unintelligent and fairly dull people.
    What do you expect? Most of these people who’ve got their hands on the levers of power once dreamed of a life in the private sector where the rewards would be huge. Instead, found out by the private sector and unwanted by many they got hoovered up by Public Service who were more than happy to throw them a bone, slip a gloriously grand title around their necks and let them run amok within the Town Hall where bollocks, bullshit, pointless management speak and blue sky thinking became the normal many many years ago.
    Thing is, what I know of the private sector is they judge a man or a woman by the profit that’s been generated by their work, their ideas and their creativity. Within the public sector, particularly the Council and of course WBC,they judge their employee and everything else in a very different way and because the only end product is us and our much cherished services that they ain’t particularly interested in because it’s all been outsourced, they’re left creating and perpetuating a way of measuring success with a paragraph of words that they cascade down to us in the hope that the myth that they do something worthwhile will remain inflated long enough for them to get promoted, load up the pension pot, get gagged and paid off and move sideways, backwards or upwards onto another host body that’ll feed them more.
    Quite simply every single ‘piece’ they shovel out is bollocks. No different to me and mine. It’s all bollocks. They simply judge their employee on how much shit they can deliver and how convincingly they can shovel it out with a measure of raw intelligence, a sprinkling of reality, a slice of ‘this sounds fucking good’ and a sequence of words that convince the reader that these twats know their stuff and they must know what they’re doing, thus hiding the reality that they’re incompetent bungling idiots who’ve survived for so very long on a culture of rancid rats urine, namely big bollocks.
    I mean, this shit, crap and Griffs word ‘Crud’ has infected every single tier of the Council. Imagine for one single moment for some terrible reason Eric Robinson became unusually aggressive and his mental health became debilitated and he hurtled out of his office, howled at the staff, ‘fuck it all I’ve had enough of Wirral Leaks’ and stole a fully laden concrete mixer, then drove that stolen Concrete Mixer up the Street and he flattened some fella who was out and about minding his own business killing the fella. What would the spin machine of WBC say about this dreadful tragic loss of life caused by the Chief Executive stealing a fully laden Concrete Mixer and flattening the life of one man. The press release from the Council would be something like, ‘ Sadly Eric went mad, stole a fully laden concrete mixer and flattened the life out of one fella who was out and about minding his own business. Happily for everyone and thanks to a considerate Eric who valued human life, five thousand others who were in the same street minding their own business at the same time were unharmed. This is a positive outcome and one we and our Partners really appreciate. Thank you Eric’!
    You see it’s all about words. It’s all about bollocks and how much of it you can pour on the spoon, say, ‘open wide you gullible fool’ and then swallow without the people saying, ‘I don’t believe this. My senses tell me this is bollocks’.

  4. Who the fuck writes this shite? Cogency, convincingness (my predictive txt went nuts with that one!) and wednesbury. And what the fuck has it got to do with personal liberty? As stated previously, the council has all its digital media platforms (website, Twitter and Facebook) to get its message across as well as 60 plus Councillors and its constituency committees, so how can breaking the rules from 4 to 12 be justified when the council is crying poverty? It’s absolute barmy. Yeah can’t find £90k a year to keep a school open but the can find the money to print this shite. That lot in press and pr must be laughing their tits off.

    • Who the fuck writes this shite! Brilliant Ste! I used up at least five paragraphs trying to ask the very same question.
      There you go readers. How to make sense of a load of bollocks using six simple words, ‘who the fuck writes this shite’.
      Well done lad.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s