We are grateful to yet another correspondent with an enquiring mind who has sought refuge at Leaky Towers. This instalment in the Wirral Chamber of Commerce/ Wirral Council shenanigans concerns itself with Egerton House. This is another property which somehow landed in the burgeoning Chamber portfolio .
Our correspondent asks whether he has to stick to the Wirral Leaks party line and launch into some ‘scurrilous criticism’ of certain individuals to get published. Absolutely not! there’s enough of that on here and anyway we appreciate and encourage independent thought and debate – unlike some other institutions we could name !
We just ask that you read for yourselves and make your own mind up although we do say amen and halleluljah to the view expressed about Kevin Adderley!
Egerton House – where has the cash gone?
Egerton House was the first redevelopment on the docks and was owned jointly by Wirral Business Enterprise Limited and CEWTEC, the training and enterprise council. Wirral Business Enterprise Limited owned its fifty percent outright after a grant from the rump of Wirral Task Force funds and CEWTEC’s share was in part funded by the Department for Employment. Essentially the purchase and re-development of Egerton House was publicly funded.
When the Training and Enterprise Councils were abolished the Department for Employment reluctantly agreed that its loan would be cancelled subject to assurances on board structure and activities and Egerton House could remain as a resource for Enterprise development on Wirral. To avoid a substantial tax bill the two companies then offered Egerton House to the University of Liverpool, Wirral Metropolitan College and the Local Authority with an option to lease it back. All pitched to take it over and the two boards of directors chose the Local Authority. A lease was granted back to Egerton House (Wirral) Limited – during negotiations over the lease the Local Authority sought assurances that one elected member of the authority would be on the board with an Officer as observer.
The directors of Egerton House (Wirral) Limited adopted a very cautious policy, fearful that they might lose their largest licensee and amassed very substantial cash holdings peaking at over £600,000. It is difficult to see how this caution allowed an imaginative contribution to the development of Enterprise on Wirral.
Following the ‘merger’ with Wirral Investment Network the old board left, apart from Dr David Prior and Asif Hamid became chairman and Paula Basnett joined the board along with others. At this point Wirral Leaks might require me to stick to their party line and launch some scurrilous criticism of these two individuals. I would prefer to say that Asif has managed to draw together the most credible board of directors that Wirral Chamber of Commerce has ever had and through his membership of the LEP and connections to central government strives to do the very best for Wirral. Paula Basnett has consistently worked hard to bring together the diverse players in business support and with help from Phil Davies (who I also admire) rescued the Chamber from exiting Wirral.
In its latest published accounts Egerton House (Wirral) Community Interest Company lists amongst its contributions to the community; a Dr Bike day to have ones bicycle checked out, a Macmillan bake off day, ‘Shower Grants’ in case you get a bit hot and bothered riding your bike to work and hosting a steering group on Enterprise mentoring. In fairness it also lists all the core activities at Egerton House that are in support of business and for the good of the community.
Its latest Confirmation Statement (Annual Return) notes persons with significant control as Asif Hamid and Paula Basnett. Not surprising since they are the only directors of what holds itself out to be a Community Interest Company.
What the accounts as at 31st March 2016 don’t explain is why cash at bank after so many years of being over half a million pounds is a mere £2518 down from £336,816 on 31st December 2014 with debtors up from £86k to £344k.
At the same time in the Chamber’s accounts for the same dates cash at bank has gone up from £59,734 to £302,000.
Would it be reasonable to suggest that rather than hearing about a Dr Bike day we as taxpayers who paid for Egerton House might be more interested in whether Egerton House has lent around £300,000 to the Chamber and if so on what terms and if not who has the cash?
Your correspondent has no problem with Egerton House funding the Chamber as long as it is secure and public and not spent on Kevin Adderley and no wish to call upon other busy people to volunteer more time by sitting, pro bono, on the board of Egerton House (although the Local Authority should be present on the board as required in the original negotiations on the lease).
In an ideal world Egerton House might be fully integrated into the Chamber along with its lease and the Chamber should then aim to publish the fullest possible accounts to its members and the whole Wirral community.
Until then perhaps they could make a start by explaining Egerton House’s disappearing cash at bank.
A classic case of not what but who you know!!
I do agree that a CIC ought in fairness when so much public money has been invested i it, to not rely on blanket exemptions within the Companies Act.
That of course could only be effected by a majority of members demanding full accounts. A check of the Chambers accounts might reveal the terms of a loan which looks very probable and I am off back to Companies house to check
Again the chamber uses the exemption to provide Abbreviated accounts which decision given the public monies involved is insidious and , again, it would need to be the Members by majority vote who determine that full and, bejesus, AUDITED accounts besubmitted.
How can publicly funded companies escape audit…well simply because Mr Tony Blair was “intensely relaxed” about regulation whether it were companies accounts, deals with Sinn Fein ex terrorists, invasions or 24 hour licensing or indeed gambling. So it is up to the Members…
My dear old friend,,,Up and down the Country, through cunning and guile and exploiting the creation of arms length companies, this is going on and will continue to go on because it’s all entirely legal. Tragically, they’re doing nothing wrong.
As is the case down here, at deaths end of the A49 that’s one hundred and eight miles from you, they managed to create such a company, take six million pounds of public money, spend it, wind up the company after it was all spent and gone forever and then, despite protests and me howling at the moon screaming, ‘you scheming cheating bastards’, they shredded every single document to ensure nobody could ever unearth the truth.
And the final kick in the knackers, the shredding was paid for by the Council ratepayers and bloody me!
My warmest regards to you lad.
Similarly what Sir Philip Green did was perfectly legal and yet one of our local MPs get very vexed about the morality. Perhaps he’ll agitated when members of Wirral Chamber of Commerce set sail down the Mersey in a yacht. Perhaps not.
Your correspondent “admires” Phil Davies. I suggest they spend a few hours researching all the local blogs who’ve put a lot of effort in before arriving at the firm conclusion that the council leader is not to be trusted. That, coupled with a change of heart on PD’s true worth would add greater credence to their findings.
We all have different views on who we admire.For the record we don’t admire the dishonest and the cowardly and the fraudulent.
I read with interest this article and in particular the reference “help from Phil Davies which rescued the Chamber from exiting Wirral”……it did NOT…. the original Chamber was in its 100th year….and during the latter years relied heavily on bids made through Wirral Council in order to continue its function…Wirral Council REFUSED its support (when Adderley was there as well as when Davies used his influence)…without this support it became untenable and subsequently sought support from Liverpool Chamber, however, Davies, Adderley, Basnett, Hamid and others had other ideas and quickly set up their ‘independent’ Chamber during the negotiations with Liverpool Chamber. (remember they all sat on the new Chamber’s Board until recently). They used the facts that the old Chamber could not garner their support in order to profit from the situation…..and profit they continue to do with tax payers monies being allocated for their use.
Wake up taxpayers of the Wirral and smell the roses!! Please see these people for what they are…certainly not philanthropists.
Informed debate! This is what we want people of Wirral.
Keith you were happy to take redundancy and all the cash out of old chamber bank account that belonged to the members. Only a couple of hundred left in bank after you all paid yourselves several thousand pounds !!
People shouldn’t throw stones in glasses houses.
Again we say let’s get it all out there……
Never mind Frank Field chasing Sir Phillip Green he should be chasing the crooked goings on in the Wirral never mind food banks and anti social behavior he should be chasing the anti social behavior in the council chamber in Brighton street and the Chamber.
Never in a million years.
I Know your Lordship
Johnathan you should get a life or a job.
If you’re going to insult someone at least get their name right.
No apologies required to us at least. We’re impervious.
Nevertheless the gesture towards Jonathan is appreciated.
Meanwhile let’s focus on the real baddies.
Sticks & Stones comes to mind I do have a nice life and although retired I do work for two local charities unlike yourself.
Wirralleaks has hit the Niall on the head! Ha ha
In the sober light of day they are just empire building.
If they were doing something for the people of wirral………..good.
They are not they are just like a lot of small business people buying themselves a job.
But, not a job to survive, they want the highest paid jobs in wirral paid for by the public.
Tell me anybody?
What has Adderley and Basnett done for the people of wirral that someone on £30,000.00 per year not have done.
What are their super powers?
In fact what power do they have at all?
They are talent-less lying, cheating, scum bag wannabes’.
They didn’t continue paying Wirral “Funny” Bizz for eighteen months after “Highbrow” and I blew the whistle to them on the £2,000,000.00 knock off for the people of wirral.
They didn’t get CEO’s and colleagues to lie publicly for the people of wirral.
They didn’t persuade “Phil the Very Very Very Very Slimy, Elusive and Deluded Dill” to get the whole clowncil, Stuart Kelly excluded, to live the lie for them for going on six years for the people of wirral.
Luv you L XXXXXXXXXXXXXX
I will be scarred for life after that two hour meeting with AdderleyDadderleyDooLally and “The Chamber Potty”.
I hope they have fond memories of sitting under that ridiculously childish football shirt with his name on the back lying through their teeth
With their sponsor on the front
James what have you done for the people of Wirral ? You allowed Wirral Biz to continue with their wrong doing whilst you took a salary. It was only when they dismissed you that you finally decided to blow the whistle on them and their scrupulous activities.
Scrupulous activities – their attention to detail from hiding the truth !
Yep oh wise Niall
I was employed there for 49 working days.
I have now been unemployed since I blew the whistle in June 2011.
AdderleyDadderleyDooLally and “The Chamber Potty” knew long before I got there that they were dodgy via audit reports and did fuck all.
You can see copies if you like.
They even continued to pay the criminals for eighteen months after “Highbrow” and I blew the whistle.