Tag Archives: Deeley Freed

ARENA REPORT MASSIVE CONFLICT SHOCKER!

Can we be the first to thank Nigel “Independent” Greenhalgh, The Reverend Rees’s personally appointed ‘Arena Director’ for his sterling work on our behalf producing an official council report recommending the Reverend immediately scrap plans for an arena at Temple Meads?

Naturally Greenhalgh, as is the way at the Reverend’s council, isn’t actually an employee of the 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 especially 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, wish to put their 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. They are therefore a highly interested party in creating an arena at Filton!

What this all means is that Greenhalgh, his company elev8 and his clients in Filton all stand to make an awful 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 recommending that they scrap an arena at Temple Meads and start promoting Filton as the ideal venue!

What do you mean conflict of interest?

NO RED TAPE FOR REDPANTS’ PALS! MAYOR FERGO TO GIVE MERCHANT VENTURERS FREE REIN IN PARKS & LIBRARIES..?

Mayor George Ferguson’s old friends and colleagues in the rich posh boys’ club the MERCHANT VENTURERS seem to be doing all right out of his administration…

STEPHEN PARSONS, in his role as chair of the governors of BRISTOL CATHEDRAL SCHOOL, looks set to take over TWO FLOORS of the Bristol Central Library with few questions asked for his primary ‘free school’ project.

DAVID FREED, director of upmarket property developers DEELEY FREED, has been handed a sizable chunk of CASTLE PARK to concrete over. At least we now know what Mayor Redpants meant when he said he was going to get things done.

Nothing to see here, honest!

Nothing to see here, honest!

Meanwhile, Fergo’s extensive and highly involved business interests in the city have attracted the attention of the council’s official auditors, Grant Thornton. “[A] review of the Mayor’s declarations of interest found a number of organisations with which the Council have had interaction which have not been included within the related parties transactions note,” they say in their ‘Audit Findings for Bristol City Council’.

No doubt it’s all just a big misunderstanding that cash-strapped millionaire George will set straight when he’s able to take time out of his busy schedule.

Edited to add:

It seems that the audit report linked to above is now mysteriously ‘unavailable’ on the Bristol City Council website – so download it direct from The BRISTOLIAN website here!

Edited again to add:

It would now appear that the Council decided to change the document’s address on the BCC website (at around 6pm on a Friday afternoon!) as soon as it was realised that The BRISTOLIAN was linking to it.

You can find the document in question via this direct link, or you can click on the link at item 11 on the agenda of the Audit Committee meeting of 24 September 2013 here

FERGO GOES THROUGH THE LOOKING-GLASS ON CASTLE PARK CONSULTATION!

Web ExclusiveAs the 18 October deadline looms for public submissions on the ‘Central Area Action Plan’ (which will seal the fate of Castle Park and decide just how much of the city centre green space will be COVERED IN CONCRETE) a recent music festival was an interesting test of the council’s resolve.

Having won a reprieve for its turn-it-into-a-shopping-mall strategy with the knocking back of the Town Green application in 2009, Bristol City Council has since tried to tread softly with the passionate Park Users’ Group. That is, of course, until this weekend just gone, when with less than a month before the CAAP consultation closes they rented out the popular urban park – despite all the public rights of access involved – to £30-a-head commercial event Tokyo Dub. Given infamous local unwillingness to spend money to get into public spaces, and with just sixty security (85% of them from that well-known Bristol neighbourhood Brighton) to watch over a licensed crowd of 5,000 with only rickety Heras fencing to contain them, this was certainly a BOLD MOVE.

CAAP February 2012

CAAP February 2012 (development area in orange)

But it’s by no means the boldest move being made at Castle Park: that honour would appear to go to our old friend MAYOR GEORGE FERGUSON. Despite being a man who as a graduate of the University of Bristol and a qualified architect presumably knows how to use a ruler and read a map, poor old Fergo has been having some proper trouble with sizes and scales when faced with angry Bristolians who accused him of putting Castle Park under threat. Under threat? Fergo?? How!?

Well, by SNEAKILY EXTENDING THE BORDERS of the potential development area. Fergo, though, claimed not to be able to see how the September 2013 ‘Preferred Options’ map of the Castle Park development clearly covers a larger area that that on February 2012’s ‘Options Consultation’ document, which only identified the empty bank buildings and car park at the St Mary-le-Port end of the park as suitable for development. In fact, the February 2012 map even clearly marks out the surrounding parkland as ‘Important Open Space’, signalling its protection.

CAAP September 2013 (development area bounded in white)

CAAP September 2013 (development area bounded in white)

Not so on Fergo’s watch though, as the millionaire mayor made clear in EVER MORE FEVERISH tweets in which he effectively claimed that black was white and up was down… “It’s a decrease [in development size] if anything,” blurted out the panicky Merchant Venturer, before retreating away from the argument as fast as he could.

But then despite his well-cultivated image of being a touchy-feely, save-the-trees kinda guy, Fergo’s was after all the go-to hip architect for the COUNCIL’S PREFERRED DEVELOPERS Deeley Freed, back during Fergo’s pre-mayor days and when they needed a bit of local credibility due to public opinion being very much against them.

This time though it’s Fergo feeling the lash of the public’s tongue – especially now his spin doctor Claudia Jean has left the building (though not before rather unsuccessfully attempting to combine aloofness, charm and hey-guys-I-can-laugh-at-myself sense of humour) leaving Gorgeous George with only LONG-SUFFERING BAG-CARRIER ZOE SEAR to keep him from sticking his foot in his mouth more than once a day (or “setting the news agenda” as those meejah professionals in Shitty Hall like to call it). Whether this will prove a good or a bad thing for Castle Park remains to be seen.

As does the reason behind why a supposed environmentalist like Fergo is so keen to see trees chopped down, green spaces removed from public use and a much-loved park extensively concreted over…