The Reverend “Modest Marvin” Rees took the opportunity on Brunel’s birthday to compare his ‘ambition’ to that of the famous right wing 19th Century engineer with the mixed record. The following Tweet appeared on 9 April:
Just a few issues with this. Not least that Isambard Kingdom Brunel didn’t build the Thames Tunnel – “the 1st tunnel under a navigable river” – his father did. Isambard became involved as an assistant engineer and took charge for a while when his father was ill but, after Isambard nearly drowned in one of the many accidents that befell the tunnel, he was sent to a hospital in Bristol to recuperate and had no further involvement.
The project then exhausted its funds and was boarded up for seven years, becoming an object of ridicule. Eventually it was opened (as a pedestrian tunnel rather than the road tunnel it was supposed to be) in 1843, some 18 years after it was started. It wasn’t converted into a rail tunnel until the 1860s after both Brunels were dead
Meanwhile, Brunel often claimed the Box Tunnel was the longest tunnel in the world and that’s often repeated by an unquestioning press (and dumbass mayors). It WAS the longest RAILWAY tunnel in the world, but there were at least four canal tunnels in England alone that were longer. Considerably longer. The Stanedge tunnel, opened in 1811,was 4,979m vs the Box tunnel’s 2,950m in 1841.
Let’s hope the Reverend’s accuracy improves when it comes to his transport system!
With the ink freshly dried on Bristol City Council’s pay policy, we’re pleased to reveal the first City Council worker we’ve discovered breaking it. Please step up, er. Stepping Up Director, Christine “Wonky* Bamford. She’s the lucky recipient on the receiving end of a trail of payments of over £22k a month to run the Reverend’s scheme to promote more black people into management roles at the council.
Rather than paying someone around £50k a year to run their pet project, the Reverend and his cabinet sidekick, Asher “The Slasher” Craig, have decided that they need to fork out in excess of £250k a year of our money to Stanford educated HR wonk, Bamford instead.
The route the council has chosen to take to pay Wonky is intriguing. Rather than running a competitive recruitment process to appoint a proper member of staff, the council is paying a procurement firm, Bloom, over £22k a month to pay London-based recruitment firm Davidson and Partners, a firm with no employees. It then appears that this recruitment firm pay a fee to Wonky, who describes herself as Davidson and Partners’ ‘Head of Talent and Leadership Development’.
The stench of tax efficient payments is strong with this one. Although it doesn’t stop there. Training fees for Stepping Up totalling £30k were also paid to a company called Smart People Solutions back in 2020. And the owner of Smart People solutions? Please step forward Christine “Wonky” Bamford.
Yet another of Wonky’s network of firms is Women’s Coin, a cryptocurrency firm “for social good”. Wonky is listed as the CEO of this firm. While Asher “The Slasher”, the cabinet member responsible for Stepping Up and its odd approach to the employment and pay of Wonky, has been appointed chair of Wonky’s firm’s charitable wing, the Women’s Coin Foundation.
All very cosy!
An announcement in March that the council’s £7.3m City Leap procurement process had finally come to an end and US firm Ameresco had got the contract to ‘decarbonise’ the city by 2030 was accompanied by a lovely Thatcherite kick in the teeth from Labour. As it was also revealed that the city’s heat network assets would be handed to Ameresco’s partner, Vattenfall to run.
Vattenfall is an energy multinational owned by the Swedish state. So we’re in the odd position of handing some of the city’s publicly owned energy assets over to the Swedish people to financially benefit from. Go figure. The announcement of this giveaway – that’s not even a sell-off as no price tag is attached – comes after claims as recently as February that the networks would be put into a joint venture company owned by the council and the private partner.
Bristol Holding boss, Peter Beange assured councillors at a scrutiny meeting on February 9 that the heat networks would be part of “a successful share sale to the winning City Leap joint venture.”
Not any more. The brand new networks of underground pipes and heat centres built with public money over the last seven years will now be fully privatised so that Bristolians can be squeezed for profit for heating their homes and businesses in an unregulated energy market.
The news didn’t seem to bother councillors at a scrutiny meeting on 28 March when the u-turn was revealed. Instead they engaged in another round of cheerleading for the private sector. Strange, because Labour, Green and Lib Dem politicians have all called for the Tories to nationalise energy providers in the face of the cost of living crisis and huge energy price hikes.
It’s like politicians come out with any old populist bollocks that they have no intention of really fighting for isn’t it?
Can we be among the first to welcome horrifying racist snob Evelyn “Rockerfeller” Welch MBE to Bristol as the new Vice-Chancellor of the city’s wealthiest education corporate, the University of Bristol? Harvard educated US citizen, Evelyn’s down home credentials include being “a scholar of the Renaissance and Early Modern Period” and Provost and Senior Vice President at King’s College London.
The rest of the press has wet its pants with excitement because Evelyn is the mother of Florence Welch. She’s singer with posh band Florence and the Machine whose bland wailing is heavily promoted on rotation by the corporate music biz and is exactly the kind of posh shite for wankers that punk rock was created to destroy.
What the press isn’t telling you, however, is that Evelyn has run into a spot of bother at Kings College over a statue there of a slaver. Thomas Guy had links with the Spanish slave trade in the 17th century, which earned him £400 million in today’s money and his statue takes pride of place at the university. Seventy-five per cent of the student body told Evelyn as the mastermind of the university’s ‘People & Culture’ strategy and head of Equality, Diversity & Inclusion to get rid, which she hasn’t done.
Instead Evelyn demonstrated the kind of empathy only a Harvard education can provide. She announced, while on a panel of self-regarding snobs talking about ‘Statues and the Public Space’ at a ‘History Matters’ conference in London, that if students didn’t like the statue they should just “walk around it”! What a shame Evelyn wasn’t in Bristol two years ago to tell Black Lives Matter protestors that they should just walk around the city’s statue of Edward Colston.
Why is our city’s establishment importing yet more elitist racist dross into our city to replace the racist dross we already had?
The power of the Bristolian?
After our sensational interview on Bristol Unpacked with Neil “Maitlis” Maggs a strange thing happened. When asked about the Reverend’s ridiculous personal assistant “Slo” Kev Slocombe we pointed out that he came across as a bit of weirdo, always lurking behind the Reverend like a Marvin mini-me with a hand stuck up the mayor’s arse. Here he is lurking around behind the Reverend at a council meeting earlier this year:
Then lo and behold after our live radio broadside, here’s a photo of a more recent council meeting:
Where’s mini-me gone?
Chelsea Inn, Easton, Friday 17 June from the Bristol Skum Collective
Generous donations on the door please – no one turned away for lack of funds
With Rita Lynch (absolute legend) along with Qeld (black block anarcho rap) and Molly Samson (Easton’s finest poet and song writer).
Photos taken by Maciej Mastalerz of Doomridermedia
BRISTOL SKUM COLLECTIVE, SF PRESENTS, WRONG WAY PROMO, THE LION, THE CHELSEA INN AND THE PLOUGH INN jointly presents….
‘Fuck The Jubilee’ 3 day bank holiday punk festival!
THURSDAY 2 JUNE SF PRESENTS & EAT SHIT PROMO
* CIRCLE NONE
* SOCIAL EXPERIMENT
* DRUNKEN MARKSMAN
* MUTILATED STATE
At the Lion (formally Red Lion) £5 on the door.
FRIDAY 3 JUNE THE CHELSEA INN Presents…
* SLOW FACTION
* CHINESE BURN
& more mayhem…
SATURDAY 4 JUNE BRISTOL SKUM COLLECTIVE & WRONG WAY PROMO Presents all dayer at the Plough Inn
*4.15 – 4.45pm : SYSTEM RESET
*5.15 – 5.45 : VIRUS
*6.05 – 6.35 : SYSTEM OF SLAVES
*6.55 – 7.25 : KISS ME KILLER
*7.45 – 8.30 : RITA LYNCH BAND
*9.00 – 9.45 : SPANNER
*10.15 – 11.00 : P.A.I.N.
+ 11pm onwards
* THE POINTLESS SISTERS DJ SET
Please share and invite your mates and fuck the jubilee!!!