Tag Archives: Bristol Cathedral

BISHOP OR PAWN?

Faull

A big warm BRISTOLIAN welcome to Vivienne “Basterd” Faull, former Dean of York Cathedral, who has been appointed BISHOP OF BRISTOL. This will be a big deal for local diversity enthusiasts who will point out that Vivienne is the first woman appointed to the role and will then demand that us plebs wet our pants with vibrant joy at this latest exciting victory for equality.

But how diverse is Ms Faull? Educated at exclusive THE QUEEN’S SCHOOL, Chester, an all-girls independent day school, she then went on to further study at the exclusive ST HILDA’S COLLEGE, Oxford. So there’s a good chance that Ms Faull is even more of a snooty elitist than her tosspot predecessor, Edward Colston cheerleader, Mike “THE MERCENARY” Hill.

Hill, at least, managed to attend a state grammar school before poncing off to Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge to become an ESTABLISHMENT LACKEY and mouthpiece for the wealthiest men in Bristol. Who will ever forget his noisy public support for slave trader Edward Colston from the pulpit of Bristol Cathedral?

Attention will now, no doubt, turn to Ms Faull’s attitude to Colston and his wealthy supporters club, the SOCIETY OF MERCHANT VENTURERS here in Bristol. Like her predecessor, will she front PRIVATE services generously funded by the Venturers at our local cathedral to celebrate Colston for schoolchildren?

Or will she opt for a different and more inclusive approach in her effort at moral leadership in the city? Don’t hold your breath.

COLSTON DAY CANCELLATION SHOCKER

A pleasant surprise for protestors who took themselves to St Stephen’s Church on the Centre yesterday for COLSTON DAY. This is the day when the city’s sad old white men with too much money and no functioning conscience pursue their CULT OF COLSTON by donning fancy dress and parading through Bristol before attending a church to hear sermon from a hired vicar heaping praise and warm words on mass murderer Edward Colston.

Alas, when protestors arrived to confront the cult of Colston directly yesterday, no one was there! Finally someone from the church came out and explained that St Stephen’s wants “NOTHING MORE TO DO WITH COLSTON“. A little later the church administrator appeared and confirmed that “the ceremony was CANCELLED, not postponed”!

A brief glance at St Stephen’s Church Annual Report 2016 explains a little more. Under the heading ‘Colston Day’ on page 5 it tells us last year’s Colston Day and the accompanying protest “had led to a QUESTIONING over what our involvement should be in future years given the feelings in the city as a whole about the historical slavery issue and Edward Colston’s part in it.”

It’s clear that the Diocese of Bristol is now CRACKING APART over celebrating slave trader Colston. They have SUPPRESSED any reference to Colston at the Girls School Commemoration at the Cathedral; got rid of the Colston symbols (Buns, Crysthanamum broaches) and it looks like St Mary Redcliffe’s Colston event is changing too. Now they have BOOTED the Society of Merchant Venturers and its satellite charities out of St Stephens Church on Colston Day! Victory is in sight …

However, the Society of Merchant Venturers aren’t going down without a fight. An organisation called ‘Embracing Our History’ (sic) has emerged. Basically a FRONT for the Venturers, they are personally inviting selected members of the ‘black community’ onto their ‘Embracing Our History’ forum. Will this patronising, paternalist, racist nonsense from the Venturers be enough to maintain their influence and keep their DAMAGED ICON afloat in the city?

Let’s hope not.  The Colston flagship is dead in the water. We say switch to ramming speed … Let’s send her to the bottom, not help the Venturers patch up their leaking rust bucket.

FAKE HISTORY BISHOP QUITS

Bishop Mike the Mercenary

Bristol’s slave trade apologist Church of England chief vicar is finally throwing in the towel. Cambridge educated Bishop Mike “THE MERCENARY” Hill will finally retire in September.

Mike the Mercenary became engulfed in controversy in 2014 when he was recorded LYING to a congregation of schoolchildren. During a private ‘Charter Day’ celebration of EDWARD COLSTON at Bristol Cathedral, Hill told the children that Colston had “lived a life of significance” and there “may be still some speculation on some of the circumstances around his business roots”.

This is, of course, a load of bollocks and FAKE HISTORY. There is no speculation about Colston’s role as a major 18TH CENTURY SLAVE TRADER nor in his role running the Royal Africa Company, which had a monopoly on the Atlantic slave trade during much of his tenure.

Between 1672 and 1689, Colston’s company transported around 100,000 enslaved Africans to the West Indies and America. This included children as young as six. Each slave BRANDED with the company’s initials, RAC, on their chest.

To maximise profit, Colston’s ships divided their hulls into holds with little headroom so they could transport as many slaves as possible. Unhygienic conditions, dehydration, dysentery and scurvy KILLED MORE THAN 20,000 enslaved Africans during the crossings. Their bodies were thrown overboard. None of this is speculation.

Hill attempted to brush Colston’s slave trading under the carpet during a private ceremony at Bristol Cathedral. The venue – along with a useful idiot senior Church of England Vicar – is hired by the city’s super-rich Society of Merchant Venturers every year to promote their FAKE NEWS version of their hero Edward Colston to school children attending Venturer funded schools.

Anyone wishing to throw a bucket of piss or rotten tomatoes over this old establishment racist, liar and fraud should note his last service will take place at Bristol Cathedral on 23 September at 3.30pm.

SLAVERY PROTEST SPUN BY COLSTON’S SCHOOL AND MEDIA

Headteacher Alistair “Snooty” Perry from COLSTON GIRLS SCHOOL recently created a media storm after sending a letter to parents suggesting that pupils had been “approached by strangers in a forthright manner.

He went on to say that his school would be “reviewing our policies for student movement around the local area, including Year 11 leaving the school at lunchtime” after a protest at the annual ‘celebrations’ for slave-trader EDWARD COLSTON on 7 November at BRISTOL CATHEDRAL.

Since then the national and local media – led by the idle Guardian scribbler STEVEN MORRIS who appeared to phone in some South West News Service copy to head office – have spun the story with claims that:

  • ‘Protesters target girls’ and ‘accost’ them in the street (The Times)
  • ‘Schoolgirls are being warned about wearing their uniforms in public’ (The Daily Mail, The Sun)
  • ‘Campaigners have also mounted demonstrations outside the school’ (Nazi Post)

All are far from the truth and there’s been no response from Colston School who began the whole affair with a ridiculous scaremongering letter to parents suggesting that their children were in danger.

The protestors have pointed out in a statement that the leafleting outside the Cathedral was in response to last year’s ‘celebrations’ of slave-trader Colston. When the  BISHOP OF BRISTOL claimed that Colston had ‘lived a life of significance’ [and there] ‘may be still some SPECULATION on some of the circumstances around his business roots right here’.

Speculation? The educational leaflets given out by protestors simply told the history of Colston after BISHOP BONKERS had failed to tell the whole truth to school children forced to attend the ‘celebration’ the previous year.

Here is the statement from the protestors:

PROTEST OUTSIDE BRISTOL CATHEDRAL AT COLSTON COMMEMORATIONS INSIDE THE CATHEDRAL

Several newspapers published articles on 17 November about children from a Colston school in Bristol, being accosted. This may relate to events 10 days earlier, where there was a public protest outside Bristol Cathedral on 7 November, aimed at the Colston commemorations going on inside the cathedral.

We refute strongly that children were accosted on 7 November. We believe the school have overreacted to events of 7 November 2015 by unduly alarming parents and children and being economical with the truth. Inside the Cathedral, whilst preparations were being undertaken to mark Colston’s Founder’s Day attended by Colston girls school, we were protesting outside.

At the time of my arrival there were 6 of us. Our protest entailed distributing leaflets headed:  ‘WHY WE ARE PROTESTING OUTSIDE TODAY’ that explained our presence, one of us holding a lighted candle. Our presence and activities were always in a visible public space with staff present.

Shortly, another 6 joined us. Among us: a retired teacher, a security guard, a historian, a grandparent who had dropped off a child to the ceremony, a teacher, three artists, a mother with a toddler in a buggy and a former student of Colston Girls. We are representative of the Bristol population whom the children live among.

We believe the teachers only panicked because they did not have a risk assessment in place that anticipated protest. Had the staff that were present with the children read the leaflets (here), that they were so quick to take off the children, they would have realised, it was the Merchant Venturer’s commemoration of Charter day and the Bishop’s comments in the Cathedral in 2014 that brought us as individuals to protest outside the Cathedral.

We found students bright, attentive and curious. Many were entering the Cathedral with little understanding of who Colston was or indeed why they were there. Others were keen to learn more and asked for leaflets.

Education takes place everywhere. We were not outside any school or in the street harassing children. Our aim was to protest at a ceremony in a significant religious and spiritual place of worship, ‘celebrating’ a controversial historical figure without acknowledging his direct involvement in the propagation of slavery and his amassed wealth from slave trading activities.

Neither did the ceremony seek to honour the memory and suffering of Africans and others exploited by the slave trade, creating memorialisation dissent in the Bristol community. This is what we are seeking to publicly highlight and change.

Why is this controversial?

The spreading of panic and fear in children and parents through the media glosses over public dissent and smothers the truth.

We are open to meeting with the Colston’s School, the Bishop and the Cathedral for discussion on a way forward.

COLSTON AND SLAVERY STILL OBSCURED?

On Friday 7 November a group of Bristolian activists leafleted people and children entering the Colston Schools Commemoration Day at Bristol Cathedral.

This protest came about because of a discussion at a Black History month event in St Pauls a few days before. The two leaflets below were handed out. The first for pupils and the second one for adults.

They have proved more controversial and provoked more of a reaction than the protestors could possibly have imagined:

WHY WE ARE PROTESTING OUTSIDE TODAY

We are Bristol residents concerned about the Colston founder day/charter day ceremonies about to take place in the city’s cathedral today and next week, following the public of words spoken by the Bishop in last year’s ceremony. In 2014 he stated that Edward Colston had: ‘lived a life of significance’ [and there] ‘may be still some speculation on some of the circumstances around his business roots right here’

It is not speculation but fact that the bulk of the money Colston gave away ‘for charitable purposes’, which built two of your schools, was generated off the backs of African slaves working in sugar plantations. Is this charity?

The memory of Africans (mere commodities under slavery) forcibly removed from their West African homelands, branded, their names taken from them, working under the sun, the slave driver lash at their backs, should be remembered, whenever the name Colston is mentioned.

Colston used his money to court influence and power in the city andParliament. He lends money to the Bristol City Corporation (city council) one year and becomes a member of the society of the Merchant Venturers the next…..

Ceremonies held in a cathedral, private or otherwise, presided over by the Bishop of Bristol, with hundreds of Bristol children in attendance, where the Bishop chooses to speculate over this fact and not give dignity to the memory of African ancestors who were dehumanised, are perverse.

We are using our presence to provide balance in education. Use the central library next door and the internet to find out the truth about:

 Edward Colston and other Bristol slave traders

 The Merchant Venturers

 The slave and sugar trade in Bristol

 Slave rebellions in America and the Caribbean

 The movement for the abolition of slavery

 Talk to your parents and teachers at school

 

COLSTON AND SLAVERY STILL OBSCURED?

At last year’s Merchant Venturers Charter Day service at the cathedral the Bishop of Bristol, stated that Edward Colston had:

‘lived a life of significance’ [and there] ‘may be still some speculation on some of the circumstances around his business roots right here’

The Bishop of Bristol’s clumsy attempt to rewrite history, effectively claiming that Colston’s involvement in the business of the slave trade was ‘speculation’ is unsurprising. A similar kind of air brushing occurred during a BBC televised debate in 2007 (the 200th anniversary of the abolition of the slave trade) when a spokesperson for the Merchant Venturers, claimed that his organisation had not traded in slave-produced commodities! This produced a mixture of laughter and howls of derision from the assembled historians in the studio audience.

This is nothing new. Colston’s extensive political and financial involvement in promoting slavery and the trade in human cargo has been obscured by the Merchant Venturers and their devotees for centuries. It took until the 1920s before his dealings in the ‘vile trade’ first began to be exposed. The problem for the Merchant Venturers and their ilk is simply this: if you set up one of your beneficent members as the ‘father of Bristol’, bang up statues1 and name streets and buildings after him; then the truth becomes politically inconvenient.

So what are the myths and what is the truth about Edward Colston?

 Colston was held up in the Victorian period as an example of ‘a self-made man’. This was far from true. Privately educated Colston was born into a wealthy merchant family in Bristol who were already embedded in the Merchant Venturers by the time he was born in 1636.

 In 1680 the profit-chasing Colston followed a number of his family into the Royal African Company (RAC), the premier slaving organisation in the British Empire. During the heyday of the RAC from 1672 to 1698 the organisation had a complete monopoly over the trade in human cargo from West Africa. Colston rose rapidly to the board of the company in this period becoming its deputy governor in 1689.

 Between 1672 and 1689, Colston’s company transported around 100,000 enslaved Africans to plantations in the West Indies and America. This included women and children as young as six – each slave was branded with company’s initials, RAC, on their chest. To maximise profit, Colston’s ships divided their hulls into holds with little headroom, so they could transport as many slaves as possible. Unhygienic conditions, dehydration, dysentery and scurvy killed more than 20,000 slaves during the crossings. Their bodies were thrown overboard.

 During this period Colston secretly accrued immense wealth which he then multiplied again by acting as a money lender. The bulk of this fortune, originally obtained from the exploitation of forced labour, became his passport to civic and political power in Bristol.

 Colston is often portrayed as a Christ-like figure giving without prejudice to the ‘poor’ of Bristol. In fact he was a Christian fundamentalist who hated Catholics and non-conformists; in fact anyone who wasn’t part of the High Anglican church. For Colston, only the ‘right-kind’ of poor and orphans were due his charity and even then they had to be physically and ideologically disciplined into strict religious observance before they would be allowed to ‘kiss the benefactors hand’.

 Colston was an old-school Tory loyalist who believed in the divine right of kings, despised Whigs and fought tooth and nail against ‘dangerous’ ideas such as ‘democracy’ and ‘enfranchisement’.
History is full of profiteers, gangsters and exploiters who toss ill-gotten wealth from the high table downwards in order to appease their own egos or to gain civic pride and status. Colston fits neatly into a long line of British slavers, colonial warlords and drug dealers that profited from the misery of colonisation and forced labour, whilst building respectable identities through philanthropy in the ‘mother country’.

The question is: For how much longer are school children expected to commemorate Colston in the city’s cathedral whilst conveniently disregarding the memory of enslaved Africans whose lives were brutalised and cheapened by the trade in human cargo? The Bishop of Bristol needs to inform school children of the truth, to restore humanity dignity to the memory of those whose lives were commodified. After all it is he that presides over these commemorations. The ball is in his court…….

(BRHG, 05-11-2015)

PDFs:

colston leaflet_adults

colston leaflet_pupils

#walrustrial: OI! HOPKINS YOU SLEAZY LITTLE CROOK

One member of the public isn’t fucking about when it comes to FUCKBUCKET HOPKINS, the bent local Lib Dem leader and councillor.

And he’s even issued an open invitation to Fuckbucket to sue him if he’s lying.

Enjoy …

From: Phil
Sent: Wednesday, January 14, 2015 1:32 PM
To: Gary Hopkins
Cc: Gus Hoyt; Rob Telford; Wayne Harvey; Matthew Melias; Colin Smith; Mark Bradshaw; Tim Malnick; Daniella Radice; Kevin Quartley; Richard Eddy; Mike Wollacott; Mike Langley; Jackie Norman; Rhian Greaves; Alex Woodman; Mark Wright; Charles Lucas; Barbara Janke; Christian Martin; Simon Cook; Neil Harrison; Anthony Negus; Afzal Shah; Faruk Choudhury; Mhairi Threlfall; ‘darren@darren-jones.co.uk‘; Mahmadur Khan; Christopher Jackson; Jeff Lovell; Lesley Alexander; William Payne; Naomi Rylatt; Mark Brain; Chris Windows; Mark Weston; Barry Clark; Michael Frost; Glenise Morgan; Clare Campion-Smith; Phil Hanby; Noreen Daniels; Claire Hiscott; Olly MEAD; Tim Leaman; Jason Budd; Gary Hopkins; Councillor Christopher Davies; ‘margaret.hickman@bristol.gov.uk‘; Hibaq Jama; Estella Tincknell; Gill Kirk; Fi Hance; Martin Fodor; Jenny Smith; Brenda Massey; Sean Beynon; Charlie Bolton; Steve Pearce; Fabian Breckels; Ron Stone; Sue Milestone; Jay Jethwa; David (Cllr.) Morris; Peter Abraham; John Goulandris; Geoffrey Gollop; Alastair Watson; Helen Holland; Timothy Kent; Mark Bailey; Sam Mongon; Tracey Morgan; ‘steve@bristolukip.org‘; ‘sw1ne2001@yahoo.co.uk‘; Nick Hooper
Subject: The shit finally hits the fan Gary Hopkins – you were warned

Dear Gary, I want you to know that I have read and digested the comments that you have made in various places, your e-focus leaflets, letters circulated to residents, e-mails to BCC officials etc, but most damningly the multi-agency ASBO meetings that you personally instigated as part of your long running vendetta against my friend Ms Simmonite. It is a fact that you lied in those multi-agency meetings, and made up grossly defamatory statements about her to enable your agenda against her to be furthered. We have only recently had sight of these documents in late December 2014 via the disclosure process in the magistrates court immediately prior to the trial commencing– a disclosure process which BCC officials deliberately attempted to thwart for obvious reasons. Doubtless, you thought you could make up whatever vile shit you liked about her in those secret, ASBO meetings because none of it would ever see the light of day. However, you were wrong, and hopefully your conniving and dishonesty in attempting to destroy my friend will be your own undoing.

We are digging, hard, as we have suspected for some time that you were behind the totally unjustified HMO prosecution, in 2010 and are close to unearthing the proof behind why you began this groundless campaign of intimidation, harassment and destruction against her. Fortunately for me, I live in Bath, and have many friends in the Lib Dem movement, and I’m not afraid to go up against you. You may be a nasty bully – but Mark Curtis – heaven knows why – finally had the courage to out you for what you are – a despicable, vindictive, lying, machinating toad, who deserves to be removed from office forthwith, along with the EHOs who behaved so appallingly in conniving with you in your disgusting attempt to destroy my friend.

We are going to make sure you get your just desserts, as a liar, a deceitful nasty bully and a miss-user of public office for your personal ends. You deserve no compassion, for what you did and continue to do to her, is appalling beyond belief.

I will be attaching to a subsequent email, which you and the other councillors should receive within the next 48 hours, the un-redacted minutes of the ASBO meetings that you instigated, and it should be clear to all who read them that you have lied, and where you haven’t lied, you have grossly exaggerated in order to carry out your vendetta against Ms Simmonite. I say it again, in public, that YOU ARE A LIAR, YOU ARE DISHONEST, AND YOU ARE VINDICTIVE, AND FURTHER, YOU HAVE SERIOUSLY ABUSED YOUR PUBLIC OFFICE OF COUNCILLOR TO ATTEMPT TO DESTROY MY FRIEND IN A PERSONAL VENDETTA AGASINT HER. I am almost certain you will not sue me for libel, or slander or defamation – for this simple reason – BECAUSE IT’S TRUE – and we can prove it. If you even attempt to sue me, you will fall harder and faster than you have ever done in your life Mr Hopkins.

PLEASE BE AWARE THAT I HAVE DELIBERATELY PUBLISHED THIS BY E-MAILING IT TO ALL THE COUNCILLORS ON BRISTOL CITY COUNCIL, AS WELL AS ALL THE NEWSPAPERS, THE TV STATIONS AND THE RADIO STATIONS. I HEREBY CALL YOU OUT AS A LIAR, A COWARD, A BULLY, A DISHONEST PERSON WITHOUT A SHRED OF CONSCIENCE – WHILST ALL THE TIME YOU MASQUERADE AS AN HONEST UPRIGHT CITIZEN – EVEN THOUGH NOTHING COULD BE FURTHER FROM THE TRUTH.

Kind regards Philip

Mobile
Twitter: @gyroman999
Skype:
www.chapelarts.org
www.janeausten.co.uk
www.moles.co.uk

AVONMOUTH BACK ON THE STREETS AS COUNCIL RENEGES ON DEAL!

Red pants aflame Mayor, “Uncle” George Ferguson and his large collection of turds (surely highly trained and skilled officers? Ed.) have RENEGED on their deal made this summer after some high-profile protests to hold monthly meetings with the residents of Avonmouth on POLLUTION ISSUES.

Protestors and the Avonmouth Dust Forum were told earlier this week by council officers that tonight’s pollution meeting was CANCELLED and that pollution issues could be dealt with by the TOOTHLESS, council officer-run Avonmouth Neighbourhood Forum instead.

And indeed it came to pass, no sign of any council officers at tonight’s meeting.

SOD THAT! It’s hi-ho, hi-ho back on the streets we go. Starting on DECEMBER 3 with a Bhopal/Avonmouth special. Come along. We’ve even been promised hot dogs and burgers!

Microsoft Word - bhopal.docx

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

GEORGE’S MARVELLOUS CATHEDRAL PRIMARY SCHOOL STITCH-UP! HOW BRISTOL’S MAYOR AND HIS CHUMS ‘STOLE’ A COMMUNITY RESOURCE…

FERGO IGNORES REPORT; HIDES CLOSE LINKS TO SCHOOL; FORCES THROUGH LIBRARY DEAL…WHY?

Parsons, Blundell, Ferguson & Cook: making the magic happen. But would you want them looking after your kids?

The CPS ‘Dream Team’: Parsons, Blundell, Ferguson & Cook – making the magic happen. But would you want them looking after your kids?

The SCANDAL over how vital space in Bristol’s publicly-owned and much-used Central Library has been given over to what until recently was a fee-paying private school continues, after Mayor George Ferguson’s Cabinet decision to rubber-stamp the move was confirmed in a ‘calling in’ council meeting in January. This followed Fergo ignoring a December scrutiny report which was highly critical of the deal on almost every count.

This means Cathedral Primary School (CPS), a new ‘free school’ set up by the formerly fee-paying Bristol Cathedral Choir School (BCCS), could take over two basement floors of the library from September 2015 if central government approves it. CPS  opened the doors to its first intake this past September, and currently occupies the Abbey House building alongside BCCS’s administrative block, the Deanery.

But exactly how did this behind-closed-doors deal get to be hammered out? And what can be done now?

The PRIMARY SCHOOL PLACES CRISIS in Bristol is real  – current estimates show that Bristol needs an additional 30% on top of current primary school places over the next five years – but the most acute shortages are in north and south Bristol, which this school will not address.

Since 2008 a state-funded but independently managed academy (thanks to severe financial problems forcing it to go cap-in-hand for government cash), BCCS has only been open to all children for 36 of its 873 years of continuous operation. In other words, it has been a BASTION OF PRIVILEGE and closed doors – and is judged to be in the bottom 1% nationally for social inclusion. Like its parent school, CPS will most directly benefit middle and upper class families in Clifton – whilst the school boasts of appealing to similarly affluent parents in South Gloucestershire and North Somerset!

Relocating the primary school into the library will mean two floors-worth of books – many in regular use – will now be shipped over to the B Bond warehouse on Cumberland Basin, where they will be MAROONED along with unwilling staff (minus convenient ‘wastage’ or ‘rationalisation’ – which will help Fergo trim down his wages bill). Bristolians wanting to access those books will likely have to wait days instead of minutes, and even face fees for the inconvenience.

So how did it all come to this?

George Ferguson has been careful to trying to appear neutral on the issue, but no matter how hard he tries, he can’t hide the facts.

As a longtime member of that smug, self-satisfied band of local sub-Freemasons, the Society of Merchant Venturers, ex-private schoolboy Ferguson has been kept abreast of the plans from the outset. Ferguson resigned from the MVs in 2012 – only after announcing his candidancy for Mayor – much as he stopped paying dues to the Lib Dems: because it was politically expedient.

A fellow MV is Stephen Parsons. As well as being Chair of Trustees at both the Bristol Cathedral Trust and Cathedral Primary School, as well as Chair of Governors at BCCS and CPS, and Vice-Chair of Trustees at BCCS and an honorary Canon at  the Cathedral, Parsons also runs the Quartet Community Foundation. A way for RICH BASTARDS to feel good about themselves by doling out a few grants here and there, Quartet just so happens to administer Fergo’s own ‘Mayor’s Fund for Bristol’.

Parsons is also – alongside George Ferguson, of course – a board member at the West of England Local Enterprise Partnership quango. Perhaps he needs a hobby?

Fergo’s Cabinet chum, Lib Dem councillor Simon ‘Casualty’ Cook, has been another key driver behind the annexation of the library. Not himself a Merchant Venturer, Cook is however a member of the MV-linked ‘Antient Society of St Stephen’s Ringers’. He also went to school (in Norwich) with former BCCS head Kevin Riley. It is thought that this close friendship with Riley brought Cook into PARSONS’ INNER CIRCLE.

Grabber George’s own close connections to BCCS, and the cathedral to which it is linked, stretches back for years. His ex-wife Lavinia Ferguson was for the best part of a decade a director of Bristol Cathedral Concerts Ltd, seven years as its company secretary. In the 90s Fergo himself worked directly with the Cathedral’s Dean to block any harbourside development that didn’t put money in his RED TROUSERED POCKETS.

But not all the pressure has been from a clique within Shitty Hall. Considerable resources have been put at the disposal of BCCS Principal Neil Blundell – the man widely seen as driving the project from the Cathedral side – from ideologically-driven quarters.

Consider the Centre for Market Reform of Education (CMRE), a champion of ‘free schools’ which whilst nominally independent shares its premises and some personnel with the Institute for Economic Affairs. (Yes, that’s right, Margaret Thatcher’s very own BATSHIT CRAZY right-wing thinktank is also in the picture!) CMRE appears to have been used to channel funds into the marketing effort to ‘sell’ the CPS library snatch to Bristolians – not because it’s a good deal for the city, but because it fits a certain agenda.

Key to implementing this has been Wotton-based communications agency Edge Media, which has worked for the Cathedral and BCCS for a number of years, and is now additionally contracted to CPS. Certainly the amount of work Edge has put into the P.R. OFFENSIVE far outstrips the £6,961 that CPS itself directly spent on communications, or the £2,084 BCCS spends with them annually. But then it is unusual for Edge to represent what is nominally a state school: virtually all its clients are private schools or organisations connected to them.

These include the School Proprietors’ Association, for owners of private schools; the Tutors’ Association, for private tutors; the Society of Education Consultants; and iSBi, a search site for private schools. It’s almost as though Edge Media doesn’t really like mixing with us ordinary folk!

But it’s not all bad news. The push to relocate CPS into the library building is not unanimously popular within BCCS – either with staff or governors – or even with the
Cathedral. It seems that many consider it a vanity project of Parsons, Ferguson, Blundell and Cook. Sources say even Blundell was surprised that Cook managed to get Cabinet approval for the DODGY library deal.

Meanwhile, the murkiness of the whole sordid affair has attracted the interest of both the Department for Education and the Office of the Schools Adjudicator.

So watch this space…