There’s no shortage of money at Bristol City Council to fork out on another bloody cultural strategy EXPENSIVELY assembled by consultants from London.
This time around, the city’s current CULTURAL COMMISSAR, Labour Assistant Mayor Estella “Tinkerbell” Tincknell has called in the services of the UK’s “leading creative economy and cultural consultancy” at an undisclosed cost.
The Tom Fleming Consultancy, an “international consultancy” according to their own OVERBLOWN bullshit, have already produced an “Overview & Emergent Themes” paper for their grand plan: Bristol’s Cultural Futures. And what a treat it is.
From a ‘workshop-style intervention’ on how Bristol ‘does international’, which resulted “in a new thought leadership paper” (no, really, they are that up themselves) to “reinventing what it means to be in Bristol, to be Bristolian, and to be at once local and global,” no hackneyed phrase, jargon-riddled cliche or piece of pretentious old bollocks is TOO EMBARRASSING for The Tom Fleming Consultancy.
However the big idea is to become … Wait for it … “THE CITY OF COUNTER-CULTURE“! Forget May ’68; The Angry Brigade; Fat Freddy’s Cat; The Velvet Underground; The Situationist International; Naked Lunch, Ketamine or Crass, a new council funded Bristolian counter-culture of property agents called Nigel renting out shipping containers to public schoolboys so they can run a PUBLICLY SUBSIDISED start-up or street food outlet is on the way. No doubt accompanied by couple of hipsters with a banjo performing authentic indie folk pop in an overpriced coffee shop. Radical or wot?
Of course, we’ve been here before. In 2009 remarkably similar bollocks from the ‘Yellow Railroad International Destination Consultancy’ resulted in a POINTLESS £72k a year Place Making Manager at the council; a couple of street art events and an expensive JUNKET for the city’s self-styled cultural elite at Brasserie Blanc in Quakers Friars. All much criticised by the, then, opposition Labour Party.
This time around Tinkerbell has recruited such counter-cultural luminaries (from those centres of counter-culture West Bristol and er, Bath) as Dick Penny of the Watershed and Andrew Kelly “The Clown” from the Festival of Ideas on to a cultural steering group to deliver the new ‘vision’ and, no doubt, mop up any PUBLIC FUNDING for their organisations in the process.
So be sure to look out for a load of upper middle class cultural bollocks you don’t want and didn’t ask for being dumped on you soon so that the usual suspects can grab another large slice of public funds …
Tom Fleming, an old associate of Watershed director Dick Penny and BFI person Carole Comley (any relation to the BCC one eh?)
What an enclosed, grubby little world ‘culture’ is – more like the petri dish variety