Author Archives: thebristolblogger

Bristol part of coordinated action across England’s major cities this Thursday as mums fight for their children’s right to an education

SEND flyer

Calling Notice: Rally on College Green, Bristol, Thursday 30th May 1pm-3pm all welcome

Parents, children and supporters are coming together in central Bristol, as part of a coordinated day of action by SEND National Crisis across the country, to highlight the underfunding and exclusion from education of so many children with Special Education Needs and Disabilities (SEND).

Dozens of demonstrations are being planned across the country by SEND National Crisis who are also handing in a petition of over 12,000 signatures. This will be followed by rallies in Parliament Square and across the country including Bristol. 1000s of parents, children and teachers are expected to be involved as part of the coordinated action.

The Bristol and South Gloucestershire Send National Crisis demonstration is being organised by campaigners from SEND National Crisis supported by volunteers from Bristol Independent Send Crisis (BISC) – the same group that won the judicial review against Bristol City Council stopping over £5 million of cuts to Special Educational Needs. It also being supported by South Glos and Bristol National Education Union (NEU)

Tara Northen, a parent and SEND National Crisis South Gloucestershire co-ordinator said:

“South Gloucestershire is the lowest funded Education Authority and this has led to the loss of teaching assistants, cuts to SEND spending and far too many SEND children not receiving the support they need to access education. The whole area around SEND is now at crisis level and we need schools, councils and most importantly national government to act.”

Kerry Bailes, a parent and SEND National Crisis Bristol co-ordinator said:

“As a parent fighting for the best future for my child, fighting against a system that chooses to put barriers in my way, I know the toll this has on parents and our children. The failure to address their needs, the failure to ensure they have an inclusive education, the failure to even get them into a school. I am turning my heartbreak into action, my frustration into deeds and we will not stop, we will not be silenced, and we will secure a full and inclusive education for our children.”

Sally Kent, a parent and BISC representative  said:

“Last year as parents we stopped horrendous cuts being made to the education and support to our most vulnerable children here in Bristol. That was just the first step in our campaign to ensure that all children receive the education they are entitled to under law and that we would expect to be provided within a country like ours. The system, and the politicians that lead that system, will hear our voices and we will ensure that our children’s education is provided.”

Tara and Sally confronted Secretary of State for Education Damian Hinds on Thursday during a school visit in South Gloucestershire raising the issue of funding and support for children with SEND.

The Bristol rally will be a family friendly affair combining a picnic, games and speeches about the the SEND National Crisis objectives, the need to improve funding, improve outcomes for children with SEND and ensure councils work with parents rather than against them.

11 speakers have been organised from parents, campaign groups, unions and political parties. The event will bring people together from across the political spectrum to demand change for the sake of the next generation.

ENDS

Attached documents:

Notes and Statistics:

Nationally the funding gap for SEND last year was £287m but projected to reach £1.6bn in the next 2 years (Source: ISOS Partnership “have we reached a ‘tipping point’? Trends in spending for children and young people with SEND in England”, December 2018). In South Glos the audit office identified that there was a £12.5m deficit in High Needs funding.

Half of all local authorities have failed their Ofsted/CQC inspection (Ofsted website, 17th May 2019) – locally North Somerset and South Gloucestershire have failed, Bath & North East Somerset passed, and Bristol is due to be inspected soon.

Pupils with SEND are six times more likely to be excluded from school than those children without. Only 6% of people with learning disabilities are in paid employment. 1190 exclusions in South Glos in 2017 involved children with SEND and only 1% of excluded pupils get five good GCSEs. Bristol was recently named in a Government report as one of ten authorities with very high exclusion rates.

The application around Education and Health Care Plans (legal documents that replaced statements) is in crisis. In Bristol the council has lost nearly 90% of appeals made against their decisions to assess. Local Authorities must complete assessments and issue plans within weeks but both South Glos and Bristol are now taking over 40 weeks for many plans contrary to legal requirements.

      

BETHEL TO BRISTOL – MARVIN’S FREE MARKET GRAVE-SUCKER CULT

BETHEL TO BRISTOL small

Following up a Freedom of Information request about the Reverend Rees’ expenses for a dinner in London in January, The BRISTOLIAN uncovered his close ties to the controversial weirdos of California’s BETHEL SCHOOL OF SUPERNATURAL MINISTRY (BSSM) and their deep cultic infiltration of his office.
 
BSSM is a Christian evangelist cult that believes everyone has apostolic power that can be unlocked through a variety of STRANGE PRACTICES. Their students are assured they can ‘perform miracles’ such as curing the sick and ‘raising the dead’ or, even, ‘walking through walls’. BSSM has come under fierce attack from fellow evangelicals, many of whom find its practices ‘UN-CHRISTIAN’, ‘GNOSTIC‘, or even ‘NECROMANTIC‘.

The latter accusation stemming from one of BSSM’s more bizarre practices – ‘GRAVE SUCKING’ – whereby the acolyte lies down on the tomb of a deceased Christian celebrity to ‘suck up the residual spiritual energy’ from their bones.
 
The cult is more materially minded, however, when it comes to seeking connections to POWER and INFLUENCE. Its closely allied religious organisation ‘Transform Our World’ largely dismisses the role of a church.

Instead, it breathlessly imagines a vast global network of brainwashed business, community, political, professional and faith leaders “walking out to their call to full-time ministry in the MARKETPLACE“, which allegedly plays “a vital part in the establishment of God’s kingdom on earth”.
 
From the FoI, we know that there was a long correspondence between the Reverend’s office and Kris ‘Voldemort’ Vallotton, co-founder of Bethel Church in Redding, California and ‘Senior Associate Leader’ of BSSM.

Voldemort’s personal blog is HIGHLY REVEALING with its SUB-PAEDO and RACIST OVERTONES as well as HATE SPEECH that unequivocally LINKS ABORTION TO “THE DEVIL”.

Vallotton also travels around the world, making connections with people his cult decides are “INFLUENTIAL“. In the emails we discover that Marvin and Vallotton are already very familiar, as is the mayor’s spin doctor “Slo” Kevin Slocombe who was also invited to attend the dinner, paid for by BSSM at St Ermin’s Hotel, Westminster, alongside “SEVERAL MPS” and an “ARCHBISHOP“.
 
Expenses for the London trip were paid by the MAYOR’S OFFICE (some ambiguity exists over whether this fare was paid back by Marvin). While BCC’s claim that ‘£25’ would cover the cost of Marvin’s meal (so it “didn’t need to be declared’) is absurd as it’s barely the cost of a ‘WAGYU BURGER’ on the upmarket hotel’s menu, never mind drinks or accompaniments. We’re told that they discussed ‘US – BRISTOL TRADE RELATIONS’, whatever that means.

Perhaps Rachel Molano, the Reverend’s ‘faith advisor’ and a BSSM ‘graduate’ can tell us more? Especially as we checked and DISCOVERED she is on the Mayor’s Office’s payroll – in flat contradiction to the OUTRIGHT LIE they told in a separate FoI – as a paid public servant. Rachel, please declare the true extent and objectives of your cult’s interests in our city?
 
Surely it’s time that Bristol’s Labour Party forced Mayor Rees and his fellow cultist sidekick Slo Kev to resign their party memberships? Magick Marv can stand as an independent for the Supernatural Necromancer Inclusivity Party or whatever he damn well likes, but surely not Labour?

First FoI (on Marvin meeting the cult leader) https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/mayors_meeting_with_co_founder_o#incoming-1346566

Second FoI (on Marvin’s BSSM faith advisor) https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/information_about_bristol_mayors?nocache=outgoing-888425#outgoing-888425

SCARY MONSTERS #2: THE BODYSNATCHERS

The_Anatomist_Overtaken_by_the_Watch

Patrick Cotter O’Brien, “The Bristol Giant” born 1760 in Kinsale, County Cork; died Hotwells, Bristol, 1806, was over eight feet tall. He fought exploitation by showmen and opportunist medical careerists and was imprisoned for his cause. He became his own promoter and to enjoy privacy ventured out in the hours of darkness to sometimes startling effect.

His final wish was to be buried securely under 12 feet of concrete. This was difficult to achieve
as the surgeon John Hunter was to steal his body before burial. He was forced to hand it back and Patrick’s last wish was granted at St Johns Chapel

A century after his death the ghouls of Bristol University triedto rob his grave but were thwarted
by the steel reinforcement and the outrage of local people. Another violation occurred in 1972 when
the ghouls examined Patrick and re-interred him. The site was edeveloped in 1986 and Patrick
was taken away. It is said that he was cremated respectfully although the Royal College of Surgeons still display one of his arms

I ask the question, what was the purpose of these outrages? It cannot be scientific, as ample study was done on the sensitive Patrick when he was still alive. Also many people living today suffer his affliction. Can anybody enlighten me about the body snatchers who abuse us even after death?

ROAD VOTE SHOCKER

HiF

A sneaky item put to the vote at the end of this year’s council budget meeting may have caught a lot of councillors napping. Our politicians were asked to approve the seemingly innocuous proposal “For the West of England Combined Authority Mayor to submit an application to the Housing Infrastructure Fund to facilitate housing growth.”

However, this £250million application has fuck all to do with building any actual houses but does include funds that will go directly towards the detailed planning of two new controversial road schemes – the Callington Road Link in Brislington and South Bristol Ring Road around Stockwood and through Whitchurch.

Councillors voted 58 – 7 to approve the submission of the bid to the government and kick-start a new road building programme in the city for the first time in a generation. Obviously, most Tory and Labour councillors who love retrograde crap voted for the idea. The Lib Dems voted against and most Greens, as usual, confused about what they’re here for, abstained.

However two Greens voted for renewed road building, Ashley Ward’s Jude Brew and Clifton Down’s Clive Stevens. What were they thinking? Here at the Bristolian, we don’t parade much in the way of green credentials but even we know building roads is the height of Thatcherite bollocks.

The vote may prove embarrassing – and hopefully career threatening – for some other councillors south of the city too. Barry Clark “Son”, Labour councillor for Hengrove and Whitchurch had told his constituents prior to the vote, “I live near to Asda Whitchurch and like you understand the issues that this road development would cause. I am also against it and actively doing what I can to get it stopped.”

Except actively voting against it when given the opportunity to get it stopped?

THE ROAD TO HELL

A4018


The Reverend Rees’s latest deranged ROAD UPGRADE PLAN, rolled out to a disbelieving public by his new cabinet transport supremo, The Former Socialist known as Kye Dudd, are some so-called “improvements” to the A4018 in North Bristol.

The road connects Cribbs Causeway and Filton to the Centre via Westbury-on-Trym and will become an important road link from the south and west of the city for the Reverend’s corporate friend’s FILTON SHED arena.

To accommodate large traffic flows to and from the proposed venue’s huge car park, The Former Socialist Known as Dudd is proposing to virtually SHUT Westbury-on-Trym to cars altogether while creating a MAZE of no left and right hand turns along the length of the A4018.

Much of the road will also be NARROWED to make way for 24 hours bus lanes and the usual ragbag of non user-friendly, deeply unpopular shared use cycle schemes. While these improvements might be a small benefit for through traffic and First buses heading to the Reverend’s corporate shed and the M5 from the centre, they will be a NIGHTMARE for local traffic, residents and businesses.

Residents, who are actual council tax payers, have pointed out that getting to their homes from this ‘improved’ A4018 will involve LONG and TORTUOUS journeys puffing out extra vehicle pollution into their neighbourhoods and children’s lungs.

Quiet residential streets will be transformed into BUSY RAT RUNS as locals endeavour to negotiate the council-designed maze to get to places such as Brentry and Henbury. Neighbourhoods that Dudd intends to DEPRIVE of direct access to the A4018 to facilitate faster through traffic to the Filton shed and the M5.

Meanwhile, businesses in Westbury-on-Trym predict the DEATH of the village once traffic is BANNED and customers from further afield abandon the shops there. The council has held a number of consultations on the plans in the area that have variously been described as “a farce”; “a fiasco”; “a shambles”; “pointless” and much else besides.

One reader describes a visit to Westbury Library where after a long wait he got to speak to a council officer “STRAIGHT OUT OF SCHOOL“.

“How long have you lived here?” he enquired.

“Nearly a year… I’m from the region though,” came the reply.

“Wait! So you’re not from Bristol and have no idea about past schemes?”

“I don’t feel comfortable answering that,” came the brave and honest reply.”

And off the officer scurried. Consultation presumably complete

DEL NAJA FOR MAYOR?

Banksy-Massive-Attack

News reaches us that Massive Attack member Robert ‘3D’ Del Naja is seriously considering running for Bristol Mayor as an independent next year. In 2012 Del Naja publicly backed George Ferguson for mayor but was reputed to be less than impressed with George’s performance. However, our source tells us Del Naja is “absolutely livid” at the Reverend Rees, particularly with his attack on the Bearpit and Bristol’s graffiti culture as well as the failure to deliver an arena.

It’s thought Del Naja will run on a ticket demanding freedom for Palestine; an arena for central Bristol and the decriminalisation of weed. We understand Del Naja will be supported in this bold bid by fellow Bristol Sound pioneer, Portishead’s Geoff Barrow. He’s been penciled in to become Del Naja’s political assistant, replacing “Slo” Kevin Slocombe, on £95k a year, should Del Naja scoop the big prize next year. Sources close to Del Naja say, “Geoff’s undoubtedly a people person who oozes diplomacy. He’s the perfect fit for a role bringing our divided city back together.”

Our source assures us Del Naja is “very serious about this. He’s even shelved an exciting new world music project happening later this year with Damon from Blur and has got Banksy working on some ideas for flyers.”

“Let’s just say a mayoral run is much more likely than a new Massive Attack album next year.”

ST MARVIN’S PARISH NEWS #19

You may have read in the local newspapers that the scourge of institutional racism is stalking the pews of St Marvin’s. The first thing to understand about all this is that none of this is my fault. Neither is it the fault of the executive head of the Parish Committee, the entirely non-racist Mr Jackson, or any other of my highly competent and equalities-positive senior leaders of our inclusive church project. This is a fact confirmed in a secret report you don’t need to see that I commissioned from my friend, The Very Reverend Holy Poonami

This has all been explained to Mr Norton, the editor of the St Marvin’s Post and one of our parish’s outstanding social liberals and anti-racists who assures me he has a lot of black friends. He now firmly agrees with myself and the Holy Poonami that the blame for all this racism at St Marvin’s lies firmly within the congregation, especially among those occupying the middle pews on Sundays. And rest assured, our inclusive parish leadership team are fully dedicated to efficiently shifting the blame for this problem on to these people as quickly as possible now that the newspapers have found out.

Further strategic responses you can expect from a wholly innocent and unaware inclusive parish leadership team will be an ongoing commitment to building a diverse parish by repeating language such as ‘inclusive’, ‘diverse’ and ‘outward looking’ as much as possible. This should allow inclusive parish leaders to continue to flourish despite acutely embarrassing accusations from the media.

In partnership with Mr Jackson and the senior parish leadership team, I will also continue to regularly publish waffle about our organisational values; ramble on about a parish journey of continuous improvement and, naturally, improve the robustness of our all-important equality impact assessments that nobody ever looks at.

You will also be excited to hear that the inclusive leadership team will ensure that the next Parish survey – due out soon – includes a section dedicated to you better understanding our outward-looking parish culture and religious environment. This will specifically address issues of fairness, equality, inclusion and diversity that many parishioners are struggling to spout as professionally as our inclusive parish leaders can.

Alongside our mission to place the blame elsewhere, I’m sure you will agree this is a hugely robust response from your inclusive parish leadership team. As my mentor the Texan psychotic preacher and notorious anti-communist homophobe, the Pastor Righteous Loon says in his new ‘Book of Loon’, “When caught red-handed, profess thy undying innocence, buy in a report and blame those who can’t answer back”.

Finally a small word about these so-called “whistleblowers” who spoke to the press. In future can anyone identifying as a “whistleblower” contact the inclusive parish leadership team immediately? We are all extremely skilled in managing these problems in line with our inclusive parish leadership goals and, often, our inclusive goals conflict with the goals of the ungodly free press. Please note that “whistleblowers” who fail to comply with this simple instruction may come to regret it.

Hopefully, with such a robust inclusive leadership response now in place, the parish can move swiftly along and not dwell on this overblown media confection for too much longer.

The Vicar

MAYOR GETTING RACY

MAYOR GETTING RACY

The Reverend rushed to the airwaves and into print within days of the Nazi Post revealing last month, with the help of four whistleblowers, that his council had miserably failed to take any action over 70 INSTANCES OF RACISM among their workforce over the last ten years.

The Reverend’s first port of call was a soft interview with Ellie “Copy Typist” Pipe, roving reporter for Venue-lite website and mag, Bristol 24/7. The Reverend’s crazed mission to EXPLAIN THE INEXPLICABLE appeared on the 24/7 website on Friday 22 February.

The first target from the failed journalist and failing mayor was successful journalism. “There is a massive challenge for the journalistic class in the city as well,” bleated the Reverend, taking aim at those who had recorded, for the public, his latest embarrassing ORGANISATIONAL FAILURE.

The Vicar went on to claim the press were “sensationalising” the issue as the four cases reported in the Post “were being addressed” by his senior bosses. Sidestepping the fact that the whistleblowers had gone to the Post because their cases remained UNADDRESSED while the perpetrators and the senior bosses protecting them remained UNCHALLENGED.

“We, as a leadership, have always taken race and racism very seriously,” Rees breezily assured 24/7 readers. “We have put in place a whole raft of measures to tackle it”. And what measures would they be? Er, we don’t know because the Reverend didn’t say and Copy Typist Pipe DIDN’T BOTHER TO ASK. So that’s all right, then.

The Reverend immediately followed this highly DEFENSIVE INTERVIEW with an appearance among friends at community radio station, Ujima where he was joined by a cheerleader from the local race relations industry, Sado Jirde of the Black South West Network.

Together, the pair spent an hour patronising listeners by batting about long-winded undergraduate seminar observations about race with little reference to the Reverend’s working class black staff  experiencing THE SHARP END OF RACISM right here, right now in Bristol.

It’s all ever so “complex and systemic” listeners were assured as the pair ASSERTED that due to the way racism was “reproduced and remodelled in institutions” it had to be “contextualised”.

Was this because the context of black working class people having their experience of racism BELITTLED AND IGNORED by middle class public sector bosses with large mortgages to service and quiet lives to live was a little too raw and direct for them?

Further highlights at Ujima included Rees whining that he couldn’t be expected to resolve 400 years of racism. Or, it seems, even four straightforward issues of RACISM within his own organisation raised that week by WHISTLEBLOWERS in the press.

The Reverend also went right off the deep end at the Nazi Post. “We all knew about it anyway”; they were “behind the conversation” on race; they were “role playing at being investigative journalists”; they had a “shallow understanding”; they were using “shock terminology” based on “inaccuracies and embellishments” and the headlines “were a great splash but not true,” the Reverend variously BLUSTERED at listeners.

To polish off this hour of PARANOID WAFFLE and EMBITTERED DENIAL, the show’s presenter even chipped in telling listeners that “whistleblower” is the “wrong terminology”. So what is the correct terminology for what this little lot were up to then?

How about “another bloody hatchet job by council bosses and client media on working class whistleblowers”?

 

WE’VE GOT THE POWER?

WE'VE GOT THE POWER?

By our Engineering Correspondent
You may have heard the local Labour and Green parties, followed by our esteemed Mayor, making very public declarations about their plans to make Bristol Carbon Neutral in the coming decade. Very sensible given the recent UN statement that we only have twelve years to avoid climate catastrophe … And counting.

They’ve talked the talk, now they’ve got a chance to walk the walk. With Bristol’s very own ‘Tidal Lagoon’, a term actually used by the Green party. Although it’s usually called the ‘Floating Harbour’. In January the Mayor, Labour, and all Green Councillors were mailed, pointing out the unequalled opportunity to generate significant amounts of carbon neutral electricity at minimal cost, from Bristol’s water system.

You can think of the harbour as a tidal lagoon, in which case it’s got the highest tidal range, at its gates, in a city, in the world. Two massive surges every day. Or you can look at it as a simple reservoir and dam, fed by two rivers, both used historically for power generation.

Actually, it’s both. With a flood control outlet (at Tesco on the M32) that leads via a straight tunnel to Sea Mills. It’s difficult to imagine a better set-up for water-based power generation. Every weir, from the main inlet at the Netham on the Avon and Snuff Mills on the Frome, right down to the Underfall Yard and Sea Mills flood control outlets, are capable of making useful power.

Unlike the Swansea tidal lagoon scheme, the entire infrastructure already exists. All the dams, weirs and flood control features are in place. Some have been there for over a century. Literally all that’s needed is the installation of appropriate turbines, themselves stock production items already in use all over Europe.

First step is the not hugely expensive job of producing a map of the whole water system, including details of all the potential power generation points.  This map can be taken to European water power specialists, currently being contacted, to get an accurate estimate of potential outputs and costs. If Bristol doesn’t have this data it will be compiled from Google Maps plus photos and video. Then it’s decision time. Given satisfactory figures and effective management (executive ‘action this day’) it would be feasible to have power coming out of the easiest installations this year.

Response so far?  Zero. Nada. They’ll all be mailed again In March (eleven years and nine months…) It’s not totally surprising. BCC is an institution and the first instinct of all institutions is to ignore inputs from outside. But they don’t really have that option. This is an emergency. All solutions must be considered. Bristol City has to step up to the plate, if nothing else for their revolting children.

This is where we find out if our glorious leaders Can Do, or are just useless politicians.

Watch this space.