Tag Archives: Colin Molton

LOOKING KINDLY ON THE CORPORATES WATCH

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The Reverend Rees’s most recent Q&A on Facebook found him in top lying form explaining his super tough policy on developers who FAILED TO DELIVER on affordable housing for the city.

“If on your piece land you FAIL TO DELIVER what Bristol needs, we won’t be very impressed by that and WE WON’T LOOK KINDLY on that when we’re looking to develop our own land and looking for partners to come and develop with us,” he boomed from his Facebook pulpit.

But is this the same Reverend Rees who’s apparently awarded a lucrative contract to a London-based corporate, LEGAL AND GENERAL (L&G) to create a mixed use development on the extremely VALUABLE council-owned Arena Island site? And is this the same L&G that was exposed last autumn as only offering 4 AFFORDABLE HOUSING UNITS out of a potential 120 on another valuable Temple Quarter site on Bread Street?

When it comes to saying one thing and doing another, the Reverend really is on to something. Indeed, it would appear that the Reverend and his personally appointed £200k a year friend and regeneration chief, Colin “Head Boy” Molton, have looked INCREDIBLY KINDLY on L&G despite them totally failing to “DELIVER WHAT BRISTOL NEEDS” in Temple Quarter and have, instead, embarked on an expensive planning appeal process to get exactly what L&G needs at the city’s expense.

When he was first MYSTERIOUSLY APPOINTED by persons unknown, virtually the first thing Head Boy Molton did was visit the London offices of L&G ALONE on12 December 2017. He met them again ON HIS OWN at the Council House on 24 January 2018. On 5 March 2018 he had a telephone call with representatives of L&G and “NO NOTES FROM THE CONVERSATION EXIST“. On 8 June 2018 Molton and the Reverend met representatives of L&G in the Mayor’s Offices.

Early on Tuesday 2 October 2018, the Reverend and and Colin Molton attended a breakfast with representatives of Legal &  General and the Bristol Chamber of Commerce & Initiative on “how we can create renewed infrastructure, housing, energy and urban regeneration in Bristol”. Later that morning the Reverend and Molton met with the CEO and the Head of Public Affairs of L&G at City Hall and “NO NOTES FROM THIS MEETING EXIST“.

During this time the Reverend and Molton FAILED to meet with arena developers, Arena Island Ltd at all. Then on 23 August 2018 L&G released a press statement titled ‘Legal & General unveils vision for major urban regeneration project at the Temple Island (former Arena Island) site in Bristol’.

Failing to deliver for Bristol seems to work rather well for some corporate developers who have the ear of the right people doesn’t it?

ST MARVIN’S PARISH NEWS #17

No doubt you all saw the photographs of me all over social media doing my recent skydive for charity? I’m sure you all agree that these wonderful photos of me – available across all social media channels and available for use by the press – were far better photos than anything our Assistant Vicar, Mr Smith has ever managed.

Mr Smith may be constantly filling up your social media timelines with silly photos of himself but my Head of Vicar’s Office, Mr Slocombe, assures me “the optics are good” as I’m far better looking than Mr Smith and my sermons “knock Smith’s out of the vestry”. So let that be the end of any further debate about Mr Smith.

There’s also a lot of noise out there in the pews at present – no doubt encouraged by Ms Townsend and her rabble at the Dave Spart Academy – regarding my energy generating windmill that was attractively attached to the church spire a few years ago. Yes, it’s made a loss for the last three years. Yes, it will make a loss next year and the year after that but we’ve got to look at the social, cultural and economic machinery behind the project systemically here.

My windmill is a fabulous parish landmark as well as being a stirring, iconic beacon of intentional ecumenical and economic outcomes at St Marvin’s. Can you believe that our church is viewed, even as far away as Malaysia, as an ambitious, forward-thinking church able to unlock key challenges? That’s what this windmill is really all about. Our very own hi-tech mechanical gateway to global innovation that aims to ensure interdependence of social and economic outcomes.

We need to seek to see beyond simple, worldly, material benefits to our parish and look at the bigger spiritual picture we can paint for the world through parish innovation. Besides, as my mentor, the Texan psychotic preacher and notorious anti-communist homophobe, the Pastor Righteous Loon says, “a failing church business can always be set against a personal tax liability if you have the right accountant”. So I’ll be visiting a chap in the new year recommended to me by Mr Molton, who’s been providing the parish committee with excellent advice regarding land use for some time now, while receiving a highly competitive retainer.

Finally, can I take this opportunity to wish you all a Merry Christmas and a prosperous new year? And please remember, don’t go giving any money or presents to the homeless at this time of year. Contact the authorities and get the destitute and vulnerable through the gateway of innovation and on to a positive pathway in one of my friend Mr Ingerslev’s innovative state-funded doss houses.

By filling up his doss houses, Mr Ingerslev is able to meet key challenges and targets as outlined in his funding agreements. And, surely that’s the type of positive action compatible with the true spirit of Christmas we seek here at St Marvin’s?

The Vicar.

MAYOR’S OFFICE CASH UPDATE

MAYOR’S OFFICE CASH UPDATE

While Bristol City Council continues to IMPOSE AUSTERITY on the rest of the city, it’s trebles all round in the office of the Mayor.

We’ve already told you about the Reverend’s personally appointed regeneration chief Colin “Head Boy” Molton – responsible for arena non-delivery – trousering £1.5k a day without the bother of having to go through any COMPETITIVE RECRUITMENT PROCESS. Not this side of the 2020 mayoral election, anyway.

Now we learn that the Reverend’s political assistant, Kevin “Don’t mention the private education” Slocombe has been treated to a ONE HUNDRED AND ELEVEN PER CENT pay rise by the Reverend. The same post under Mayor No More Ferguson attracted a wage of £45k for his glamorous assistant, Zoe “Groupie” Sear. Now the pay is £95K.

£45k isn’t bad money at all for a post managing a PA and a couple of admin assistants. But clearly not enough money for a MIDDLE RANKING PR of Slocombe’s standing. So he’s has bagged a £50k pay rise from his friend, the Reverend.

News is also in, courtesy of the council’s external auditors, that the £100k the Reverend handed to departing Chief Exec Anna “Big Wedge” Klonowski last year was a GENEROUS PERSONAL GIFT with public money from the Reverend and not a legally required pay off for her notice period as he claimed.

How much is the Reverend spending on generous and unnecessary payments to his mates? It’s hard to say. Especially now that the paperwork for the senior management reorganisation that the Reverend promised would save £1million a year on senior bosses’ wages has been made ‘EXEMPT‘. This means the public and press are conveniently DENIED access to any final figures.

 Is this because the promised savings haven’t materialised for the council, while large sums of money for a privileged few have materialised in personal bank accounts?

HEAD BOY JUMPS SINKING SHIP

As the debt owed to council tax payers by the city council’s useless energy reselling business, BRISTOL ENERGY, tops £30 million, the stench of CRISIS at the firm settles like an early morning carcinogenic dust cloud over Avonmouth. Not least because of a wonky merry-go-round of directors bouncing in and out of the company on A MONTHLY BASIS.

In May, we reported that the Reverend’s personally appointed £1,500 a day regeneration chief, Colin “HEAD BOY” Molton had been given the nod to join Bristol Energy’s board. What exactly does moneypants Molton know about the energy reselling business, we mused at the time and the answer appears to be, er … fuck all!

As Molton RESIGNED at the end of July having served all of five months on the board and helped wave through a further council tax payer cash injection into the firm of £7 MILLION. Is this a rat leaving a sinking ship?

Following Molton out of the door, a month later in August, was the firm’s Director of Finance, LAURA FLOWERDEW. Did she jump or was she pushed? Who knows? Any information on the company we fund is cloaked in ABSOLUTE SECRECY. However, we do know she’s been replaced by an Interim Finance Director, consultant Marek “MAGIC” Majewicz. Perhaps he can make a £30 million debt to the council taxpayer disappear?

Joining Magic Majewicz on the board of the sinking ship in August was St George Labour Councillor Steve “WALLFLOWER” Pearce. A typical loud-mouth Labour Party bully with no discernible talent for anything and zero business experience.

Is Pearce the Reverend’s useful idiot who will be left at the table grinning like a fool when the whole thing finally crashes and burns?

ARENA CONFLICT: CLOWN PRINCE

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Nigel “Independent” Greenhalgh’s blatant CONFLICT OF INTEREST was raised by Tory councillor Geoff “Cods” Gollop at the cabinet meeting on 3 September. The meeting where the Reverend cancelled the Temple Island Arena in favour of an office development on the site.

Cods Gollop was given a note by the Reverend’s NEW CLOWN PRINCE of the council’s legal department, “Uncle” Quentin Baker, another temp brought in to oversee a senior post of some significance in Rees’s administration.

And in a classic NON-DENIAL DENIAL, Uncle Quentin explained to Gollop: “The relevant officer [Greenhlagh] has confirmed that he hasn’t previously been employed by YTL as was alleged in the press and [a council] scrutiny meeting.”

Er, except no such thing was ever alleged in the press. The allegation was that Greenhalgh had worked for CRIBBS PATCHWAY NEW NEIGHBOURHOOD and was still working for CRIBBS URBAN VILLAGE. Both organisations that stood to gain from an arena at Filton.

This piece of non-denial denial bollocks from Uncle Quentin seems to have satisfied most Bristol City Councillors. Most Bristolians, however, are in a state of ABSOLUTE DISBELIEF that Greenhalgh has been paid by them to produce a report TRASHING their arena at Temple Island and promoting one at Filton, when he stands to financially benefit from the decision.

Again, in many countries, The Reverend, Head Boy and Greenhalgh would now be spending a considerable amount of time with law enforcement agencies DISCUSSING CORRUPTION.

Unfortunately the UK is not one of those countries.

ARENA CONFLICT: MAKING GREENHALGH

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Nigel “Independent” Greenhalgh, the council’s ‘Arena Director’ produced the official council cabinet report recommending that the Reverend SCRAP plans for an arena at Temple Meads in favour of a mixed use development. Advice the Reverend happily accepted on September 3.

Naturally Greenhalgh, as is the way at the Reverend’s council, isn’t actually an employee of Bristol City Council. Instead he’s a WELL-REMUNERATED CONSULTANT operating through a service company, which sounds like a shit early 90s rave act – ELEV8.

It’s well worth noting some of elev8’s past and present clients. For example, according to the company’s website, elev8 represented ‘CRIBBS PATCHWAY NEW NEIGHBOURHOOD’, the group of landowners who masterplanned, along with South Gloucestershire Council, the proposed development of Filton airfield. The very neighbourhood where Malaysian corporation, YTL, now wish to put an arena!

Also, according to elev8’s website, they continue to work for DEELEY FREED – who have an option on ‘CRIBBS URBAN VILLAGE‘, a development site in the Filton area. Greenhalgh and his firm are therefore an interested party in siting an arena at Filton and the effect this might have on land and property prices there.

What this all means is that Greenhalgh, his company elev8 and his clients in Filton may make a LOT OF MONEY from cancelling the arena at Temple Meads and promoting one at Filton instead.

What better person than Greehalgh is there, then, to write an INDEPENDENT REPORT for the Reverend and his cabinet asking them to SCRAP an arena at Temple Meads and start PROMOTING Filton as the ideal venue!

What do you mean conflict of interest?

ARENA CONFLICT: HEAD BOY TAKES OVER

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With Barra Mac Nugget safely employed at YTL, a new face appeared on the scene at Bristol City Council. Please step forward Colin “HEAD BOY” Molton, a former director at the HCA, the quango that sold Arena Island to Bristol City Council in the first place.

Initially employed as a temp to cover Mac Nugget’s post until a permanent replacement was found, Head Boy Molton was eventually handed the job to sort out Bristol’s arena on a SHORT-TERM CONTRACT basis, apparently without the hassle of having to go through any FORMAL RECRUITMENT PROCESS. Instead, Head Boy cut a deal with Bristol City Council to continue in his £1.5k a day post until May 2020 Conveniently enough, when the Reverend will likely be voted out of office.

Such a deal is, of course, outside all KNOWN PRINCIPLES of good employment practice and contrary to Bristol City Council’s constitution and equalities policies. How can an old white man with a chartered surveying qualification and a useful contacts book simply be handed a highly paid senior job at Bristol City Council without going through a COMPETITIVE RECRUITMENT PROCESS?

Since taking up his post, Molton has been glued to the Reverend’s side. Even attending the annual property development piss-up (surely networking event? Ed.), MIPIM in Cannes with the Reverend where the pair MET WITH YTL on at least TWO OCCASIONS.

However, perhaps Head Boy’s most interesting piece of handiwork – so far – was to employ yet another EXPENSIVE CONSULTANT as his ‘Arena Director’.

Please step forward, Nigel “Independent” Greenhalgh …

ARENA CONFLICTS: A TANGLED WEB

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Thanks to the hard work of a MEMBER OF THE PUBLIC, Frank Church, a number of emails between Bristol City Council and Malaysian multinational, YTL, potential developers of an arena at Filton were finally released under FoI in August. This saw, even, the Nazi Post bothering to read some emails in brief flurry of investigative activity courtesy of their local government correspondent, the fragrant Esme “DAN” Ashcroft.

“During the second of three extraordinary scrutiny meetings on June 20,” explained Ms Ashcroft, “Liberal Democrat councillor for Knowle Gary Hopkins asked when council officers were told to start drawing up plans for a MIXED-USE DEVELOPMENT on Temple Island.”

Colin “Head Boy” Molton, the reverend’s PERSONALLY APPOINTED £1.5k a day regeneration chief replied to Hopkins: “It was around LATE AUTUMN last year when the YTL proposition came to the fore.”

However, observes Ms Ashcroft, “Freedom of Information (FoI) documents seen by Bristol Live reveal a SENIOR COUNCIL OFFICER was exchanging emails with Malaysian investment firm YTL LAST APRIL about the prospect of an arena in the Brabazon hangar at Filton Airfield.”

The senior council officer exchanging these emails was former Bristol City Council Strategic Director Place, Barra Mac “NUGGET” Ruairi, the man personally running Bristol’s arena project until he went to work for YTL, the opposition. But why was the Reverend’s personal property expert (troughing around £200k a year off the rates) Colin “HEAD BOY” Molton telling porkies about these emails?

Perhaps Ms Ashcroft should have paid a little more attention to Mac Nugget’s emails and the dates they contain? (To be continued …)

GOLDEN BOY JOY FOR USELESS ENERGY FIRM

Much fuss all round last month as the local BBC finally cottoned on to what we’ve been saying for over a year now and announced that the council’s vanity energy reselling firm, Bristol Energy, has now LOST £24MILLION with no end to the losses in sight!

The BBC even pointed out that the council’s so-called “INVESTMENT” in Bristol Energy jumped by 40 per cent in six months last year from £17million to £24million. But is it even an investment if you’re unlikely to get your money back?

Bristol City Council and Bristol Energy’s response to their loss-making disaster continues to be shrouded in “COMMERCIALLY CONFIDENTIAL” mystery. Although an UNKNOWN Bristol Energy spokesman assured the BBC that the money would be paid back “with interest”! How, we’re not told.

Meanwhile, behind the scenes, the city council director who set up the company, Bill “Dick” Edrich, has been quietly OUSTED as a director of Bristol Energy and replaced with the Reverend’s new golden boy, Colin “HEAD BOY” Molton of the Colin Molton Consultancy Ltd.

Head Boy, currently the very well remunerated interim Executive Director of Growth and Regeneration at the council, is the latest CHANCER to have the ear of the Reverend. He comes from a senior post at the Homes and Community Agency (HCA) and it appears he is being paid a SMALL FORTUNE in the region of £5k a week by the Reverend to get some housing developments moving in Bristol prior to the next mayoral election.

But what exactly does he know about the energy reselling business?

COCKTAIL PARTY JOY

COCKTAIL PARTY JOY

FACTS and FIGURES come crashing into the inbox regarding the Reverend’s recent trip to Cannes to attend the MIPIM property conference. A sort of working holiday on the Côte d’Azur where gullible local authority types can get mugged for their land by property speculators.

THREE ‘delegates’ from Bristol City Council went. The Reverend and his two current sidekicks, PR man Kevin “Don’t Mention the Private Education” Slocombe and Colin “Head Boy” Molton. Although we’re told that the Reverend’s Cabinet member for Spatial Planning and City Design Nicola “LA LA” Beech went along paid for by her employer.

And the cost of this three-day jaunt to you, dear council tax payer? A mere £9,950! Included in a busy itinerary for these selfless public servants were urgent events such as the ‘ARUP COCKTAIL PARTY‘, the ‘YTL  DEVELOPMENTS DINNER‘ and the ‘BOUYGUE – LINKCITY DINNER‘!

Tough gigs but, no doubt, someone’s got to spend £10k of our money doing it!