Tag Archives: #4.1


His Royal Mayorness George the First has announced that his newbie temporary Corporate Services Director ANGIE ‘PAIDWELL’ RIDGWELL, who only arrived in January, is to take over from Chief Exec Graham Sims in the new post of interim City Director.

Ms Paidwell has an intriguing past including a spell in 2006-08 2008-10 as Chief Exec at Thurrock Council, where she was unceremoniously dumped by the Tory administration there for a series of blunders including delivering late and incomplete accounts for the authority and getting the council threatened with a COSTLY LEGAL ACTION by big beast quango, the Thurrock Thames Gateway Development Corporation.

Picking up a secrecy-shrouded pay-off of £330k for her trouble at Thurrock, Ms Paidwell reemerged at the London Development Agency running corporate accountants KPMG’s £1.8m project to restructure the accounts of the quango shortly before it was scrapped.

Two more years down the line and Ms Paidwell reemerges in Bristol in the top job with a council press release optimistically talking up her innovative relationship with ‘Big Four’ accountancy firm KPMG. Ms Paidwell, meanwhile, describes herself as “very effective in delivery transformation in challenging and heavily unionised environments.”

In other words she’s good at sacking people.


Outgoing Avon & Somerset Police Chief Constable COLIN ‘DOUGHNUT KING’ PORT thumbed his nose at austerity-hit Bristolians in January by landing them with a tab of more than £4k tab for his ‘gourmet’ nosh-up private leaving do at Bristol Zoo in January.

Port, a former boss of the notoriously corrupt South East Regional Crime Squad (SERCS), left his post as Bristol & Bumpkinshire’s top cop after being told to reapply for his job by new Police & Crime Commissioner SUE ‘PASTIE QUEEN’ MOUNTSTEVEN last November.

Obviously realising that presiding over three Stokes Croft riots in a single Summer in 2011 didn’t help his chances, the fleshy-faced flatfoot decided to jump before he was pushed – threatening wrongful dismissal lawsuits all the way.

No stranger to getting others to cover his bill, Port ratcheted up nearly £15,000 in expenses over the years, including £437.40 on WHITE TIES for posh dinners and £56.81 on malaria tablets – obviously an essential requirement for policing Britain’s tenth largest city.

Bristol’s own Keystone Khief Konstable’s next move is anyone’s guess – though a plum ‘consultancy’ with IBM might be in order, given its involvement with A&S in the abortive privatisation venture ‘Southwest One’.

Best ask Mrs Port – also known as SWO’s Sue Barnes.


At a recent meeting of one of the council’s Scrutiny Committees, Labour’s lumbering and not terribly numerate finance spokesman, Mark ‘Small’ Brain, quizzed the mayor’s new Tory finance chief, Geoffrey ‘Cods’ Gollop, on his plan to fire a load more Internal Auditors to save a few quid (so that His Royal Mayorness George the First can invest in proper council services like talking lampposts and INFLATABLE VEGETABLES, no doubt).

‘Small’ rightly pointed out that sacking Internal Auditors might be a stupid thing to do as they can save the council a small fortune by detecting and stopping many of the frauds, rip-offs, serial incompetencies and outright thefts regularly committed by Cods Gollop’s management.

“Nonsense!” boomed the Tory accountant before explaining that his plan to introduce some new untried and untested financial software would make such frauds a thing of the past and therefore Internal Auditors entirely expendable.

At this point the former Lib Dem Leaderene Babs Janke herself butted in to Cods Gollop’s paean to the infallibility of computer software to say, “I remember last year when I ran the finances and you were in opposition you asked me the very same question and didn’t like that answer!”

It’s not politics they’re doing down at the Shitty Hall is it? It’s musical fucking chairs.


It's easy Peezy for Red Trousers' deep pockets!

Ever wondered how best to collect urine samples for medical screening purposes? Well, Bristol’s Premier Citizen has – and he’s quietly been putting his money where his not-inconsiderable mouth is…

Demonstrating an unwavering commitment to innovation and a willingness to roll up his sleeves and get stuck into issues of feminine hygiene, MAYOR GEORGE FERGUSON is a keen investor in Forte Medical, whose main product is the ‘Peezy MSU’.

Formerly called the ‘Female Freedom Funnel’, the Peezy is a device to collect WEE SAMPLES from women without messy spills, and thanks to a pushy sales strategy it’s already making lucrative in-roads into both NHS and private hospitals.

Whilst he’s no stranger to taking the piss, George has kept this one on the Q.T. But is this because he doesn’t like to blow his own trumpet as a champion of medical progress? Or doesn’t he want to upset his core muesli belt supporters with the news he’s in bed with a bunch of ‘life sciences’ venture capitalists?

After all, big business and biotech don’t really go with George’s treehugging image…


Maverick hiring practices suggest Mayor Red Trousers fully intends to take a firm grasp of matters in his office

George and Zoe, sitting in Uni...The direct appointment of former Destination Bristol PR hackette ZOE SEAR as Mayor’s Assistant on a generous £45k-a-year whack by kindly uncle figure and noted bachelor-around-town George Ferguson has raised a few eyebrows – not least for the absence of any competitive recruitment process for the post.

Mayor Gorgeous batted any criticism aside, however, claiming he was entitled to directly appoint an assistant under the provisions of the Local Authorities (Elected Mayor and Mayor’s Assistant) (England) Regulations 2002.

And he’s absolutely correct. However, the same legislation – backed up by the Local Government and Housing Act 1989 – also makes it clear that the post is POLITICALLY RESTRICTED, meaning that Zoe should not take part in any party political activities.

So how come Zoe is listed with the Electoral Commission as the Nominating Officer for George’s political party VANITY PROJECT, Bristol 1st? Does she intend to continue as both Uncle George’s personal media guru and his party functionary? And how will she manage to fit in her duties as the Mayor’s £865-per-week bag carrier whilst still managing her own marketing consultancy Tonic?

With all this going on it seems likely that Zoe may let her directorial obligations at her quietly forebearing hubby’s ad agency slide a little…

 Especially as Mr Ferguson and Mrs Sear are bound together in some ‘fresh’ moves of their own by playing hard and loose with the law barely three months into Bristol’s brave new world of municipal mayoralty…


Little change at the City Council Legal Department as keen ‘Bristolian’ reader McNamara replaced by Nevin

Liam Nevin as Malfoy plus Stephen McNamara

Can we at The Bristolian be the first to welcome Bristol City Council’s new boy wonder legal boss LIAM ‘MALFOY’ NEVIN to town?

The spooky fresh-faced former public schoolboy recently jumped ship as Town Clerk in Stratford-upon-Avon to take over from our old friend STEPHEN ‘LYCRA’ MCNAMARA, after the sweaty-crotched baldy-head took early retirement to spend more time with his cycling accessories and Bristol Rovers plaque of honour for his outstanding contribution to local stadium planning in the south of the city.

It will be a hard act to follow, even though McNamara’s ‘retirement’ takes him only 500 yards from his old office to a cushy CONsultancy at the gated complex of glossy law firm Veale Wasbrough Vizards – best known for representing Catholic private school St Benedict’s during a paedo priest scandal.

Following such an IMPRESSIVELY OAFISH predecessor, rosy-cheeked Malfoy really has to pull out all the stops in his drive to demonstrate he can be an even bigger tool of the law, while taking a very interesting approach to managing the huge cuts required in his fiefdom.

In mid-February, on discovering he runs a legal department that can no longer afford, err, lawyers, Malfoy thought it would be a terrific wheeze to send – instead of, y’know, a qualified solicitor or something – one of his secretaries down to the County Court to represent the council at a hearing.

Alas, the judge was less than impressed with this fine example of local authority “efficiency saving” and sent said secretary packing back to Shitty Hall to tell Malfoy that m’lud would hold him in CONTEMPT OF COURT if ever he dispatched an unqualified representative to his court again.

A contempt of court charge – that will definitely save Bristol’s taxpayers lots of money!

Well done, Malfoy. You’re going to be fun to have around aren’t you?


Kids to lose out as council plan to privatise play services and slash youth provision city-wide falls into crisis

Bristol City Council’s plan to save money by outsourcing the Youth and Play Service to new provider Learning Partnership West has COLLAPSED just days before responsibility was supposed to be handed over.

The madcap plan to slash the service’s budget by one-quarter had already caused concern when it emerged recently that this “transformation” of the service placed seven youth centres in the city’s most deprived areas and most of the city’s adventure playgrounds under THREAT OF CLOSURE.

The full transfer, scheduled to take place on 31 January, has not yet occurred, though at the start of February Windmill City Farm playground was SHUTTERED with the loss of half its staff following transfer to LPW. The rest of Bristol’s adventure playgrounds and the most vulnerable youth centres look set to close by July – shut in the face of kids just starting their summer holidays.

The youth centres facing the most immediate threat are Southmead, Brentry Lodge, Docklands, Lawrence Weston, Oldbury Court, Hillfields and Hareclive, whilst the adventure playgrounds staring into the abyss are Felix Road, St Paul’s, Southmead and the Lockleaze Youth and Play Space.

The reason for this shameful abandonment of services? The new private providers were only required to achieve a series of barely-defined “outcomes” rather than manage existing public buildings and assets more efficiently.

However, the council’s ballast-dumping rush to wash its hands of the Youth Service at any cost really started taking a turn for the worse late last year. It was then that Rose Richards, senior manager in Bristol Youth Links and the council officer overseeing the sell-off of our youth and play services, decided to EXCLUDE TRADE UNIONS from all discussions. This included talks on ‘TUPE’ arrangements – the laws and regulations protecting workers’ pay, terms and conditions when staff are transferred out of the public sector and into the private sector. Now why would she want to do that?

Complaints from staff and unions were consistently REJECTED OR IGNORED by Richards and the council continued headlong into its youth service giveaway. But just before the TUPE transfer was due to occur at the end of January, it became clear that neither the council nor Learning Partnership West had any idea who or what was actually being transferred – or what their legal obligations were. Employees with years of service discovered their pensions and other benefits were under threat. Understandably outraged, they threatened to take the council to court. On top of this it has emerged that Learning Partnership West does not want any of the council’s admin staff nor any of the youth centres and playgrounds.

Meanwhile, the council faces LITIGATION and the closure of vital public facilities in the city’s most deprived areas, with the whole sorry mess likely to cost us hundreds of thousands of pounds – completely undermining any savings that could have been made – in legal bills. All because one council officer would not listen to reason and wanted to conduct the transfer behind closed doors and stiff her own staff.

What a bastard outrage.

Apocalypse Row: Bristol Council closes down youth and play facilities

Apocalypse Row: Bristol Council closes down youth and play facilities


Like all public school twits, Mayor George ‘Pig’ Ferguson likes nothing better than the sound of his own voice. So a keynote speech for a select, £25 a ticket, audience of his UPPER MIDDLE CLASS GROUPIES at the Architecture Centre last month was inevitable. Modestly titled ‘The Art of the Impossible’, in it Ferguson outlined his ‘vision’ for the city.

And pretty weird it was too: a sort of JG Ballard-meets-George Monbiot future Bristol, full of silent electric boats on the harbour, buildings with photovoltaic skins and super-lite composite bikes. A city centre marked out with tree-lined avenues and boulevards for the pleasure of his architect friends from Redcliffe – something that would only be possible through the minimum wage labour of ordinary Bristolians sweating away unseen ‘below stairs’ anyway.

The icing on the cake, however, was Gorgeous George’s proposal to build a town square on Castle Park named after a notorious FASCIST FELLOW TRAVELLER!

Because ex-Merchant Venturer Ferguson thinks it’d be a good idea to call it “Eve Balfour Square, named after the founder of the Soil Association” – presumably overlooking the fact that horrifying right-wing Tory toff Balfour set up the Soil Association with pal Jorian Jenks, the notorious ‘blood and soil’ card-carrying British fascist.

Still, Eve Balfour Square pairs quite nicely with our slave trade celebration concert venue, the Colston Hall, doesn’t it?


Council austerity not a problem for outgoing Chief Executive

One thing not threatened by any cuts is the fat cat pension of Bristol City Council’s interim Chief Executive GRAHAM ‘SIMPLE’ SIMS.

Graham Sims is alright, JackSo keen is incoming Mayor GEORGE FERGUSON to be rid of the bumbling timeserver, he’s agreed – despite Sims only having worked 36 years – to sign him off with the equivalent of forty years’ service so he can get a full gold-plated pension when he takes retirement in March. Quite a nice little earner in the age of austerity for the £150k a year bureaucrat.

It’s yet another piece of good fortune for this chronically over-promoted middle manager Sims. When BRADFORD SUN QUEEN Jan Ormondroyd swanned into Bristol in 2008 to become Chief Executive, the first thing she did was get rid of Sims’s Housing Department boss IAN CRAWLEY, whose above average intellect and competence was considered a dangerous threat in the court of the Sun Queen. It was into this vacuum that the hopelessly lightweight yes-man Sims stepped, to hoover up a £120k salary as well as promotion for fawning over Jan and her strategic leadership friends.

Fast forward two years to 2010 and Jan’s sidekick and pathetic wannabe enforcer JON HOUSE, the former cop turned local authority Deputy Chief Executive, had to urgently enforce his own speedy exit to avoid an embarrassing scandal. And who should pop up to pick up the pieces, as well as a tasty pay rise? Yes – Graham Sims!

By mid-2012 Jan finally had to throw in the towel herself after four years of high spending and low achieving. But who should get the top job (solely on the basis of not being weird, provably bent or Finance boss WILL GODFREY)? Yes, it’s our man Graham – once again on hand to collect a nice little salary bump, now boosting him up to £150k a year. Very handy indeed when you’re only fit for retirement and on a final salary pension scheme.

Following this cast of horrors, we can only speculate on the calibre of candidate GORGEOUS GEORGE has in mind for the Chief Operating Officer position he plans to replace the Chief Executive with.

One thing is certain, though – someone will be (red) trousering a pretty penny. Here’s to austerity!



Long, long meetings with senior council officers all day today. One after another! With lots and lots of information! All the officers were very nice to me indeed and they all listened very politely and attentively to everything I had to say. So there’s no doubt in my mind that they are very interested indeed in what I have to say and are on board the Bristol Green Express departing for a sustainable future!

Funnily enough, every officer had with them an extraordinarily long and detailed report for me to read later. Although we agreed, due to time constraints, it was best to discuss the contents right away because with our busy diaries we don’t know when we might be able to meet again.

It’s a crazy and hectic place, George’s City Hall!


Finally managed to get in to chat to George today. I was waiting almost two hours for him to finish meeting Zoe in his office with the door locked – what a dedicated guy he is! Courteous as ever, George apologised loads and said that they had got sidetracked into a discussion about Uganda or something. I never realised our decisions reached that far!

Sometimes it’s a crazy, freewheeling open forum of diversity, George’s City Hall!

Councillor Hoyt – he’s so cuddly (& easily confused)!


Met Mr Robinson, the chief council finance man today. Some of the figures were very confusing indeed but Mr Robinson kindly explained that there were some “presentational issues” with the figures that he and his colleagues would iron out by, possibly, as soon as next year.

We both had to laugh at one point when Mr Robinson said he hadn’t brought one set of figures because his dog ate them last night!

We’re an animal loving bunch at George’s City Hall!


Cabinet Meeting/Knowle West. Try as I might I couldn’t find anywhere to buy a carob-coated quinoa bar or a soy latte before the meeting. Oh well, I struggled through it anyway.

We’re all up for a bit of personal sacrifice in George’s City Hall!


Bumped into my good chum and fellow Ashley councillor Dr Jon on Stokes Croft this morning as he was leaving Best In with his cans of special ‘breakfast drink’. He looked a bit sad, so I tried to cheer him up by inviting him over to my new pad later on. I told him we could make a den with chairs and sheets in the living room and pretend that we are astronauts on a moonbase. He seemed to like this idea because he called me a “space cadet” – awesome!

It’s a proper hub of cross-party cooperation, George’s City Hall!


Just noticed I’ve put my name to a press release announcing the closure of seven youth clubs in the poorest areas of the city. This is the Lib Dems’ fault not mine and, anyway, it’s no use crying over spilt milk! Now, I must stop writing my diary and get on with mine and George’s plans to protect the vulnerable of the city.

It’s all about caring, George’s City Hall!


Left my homework to the last minute again – forgot to read all those important reports and check those budget cuts figures, oops! Oh well, I’m sure the nice council officers will help me get a better understanding of it all tomorrow, they’re all really clever and nice. I love being a Cabinet Member, I feel I am really making a difference!

And what a great place to work: George’s City Hall!