Tag Archives: Hengrove

ARENA NEWS

Adepts at the art of reading runes, the philosophy of semiology or the mysteries of poetics and symbology may have noticed the Reverend’s recent PLAN put before his cabinet to “facilitate the necessary cycle lane works on Airport Road”.

So what? He’s building a cycle path on Airport Road in Hengrove? Big deal. But this is what catches the eye – “This proposal seeks approval to submit a Local Growth Fund (LGF) GRANT REALLOCATION request to the LEP”. So why might the Reverend be reallocating a grant and from where?

“Due to the fact that the coach parking scheme on ALBERT ROAD can no longer be completed within the originally agreed LGF funding window, this proposal seeks approval to reallocate £790k to the Airport Road scheme,” breezily explain the Reverend’s transport minions.

Of course, a coach parking scheme on Albert Road is an integral part of transport plans for the Arena at TEMPLE MEADS. If there’s no coach park planned then there’s no arena going ahead at Temple Meads.

So look out for that arena at Filton announcement coming soon and be sure to enjoy your cycling lane on Airport Road instead!

FILM FLAM

City office movies

A dull photo-op last month of old men in suits vacantly sat around in an open plan office while the Reverend Rees waffled aimlessly to journalists about homelessness signalled the launch of the Reverend’s big idea – THE CITY OFFICE.

The ‘BIG IDEA’ is to get bosses from business, public services and the voluntary sector together to solve the city’s problems. So 75 bosses gathered at the Counts Louse on 29 September to have their photo taken in front of the local press while pretending to listen attentively to the The Reverend as he tried to convince us all that this was all terribly exciting and the whole world was watching and waiting on his initiative with baited breath.

The City Office, itself, we were told, would be focusing on homelessness and rough sleeping to start with. However, the noticeable absence of any CASH TO SPLASH or even any new policy to launch meant we had to settle for a PR RELAUNCH of the ‘Bristol Street Aware’ campaign. An initiative started by corporate retailers in Broadmead last year to clear rough sleepers off their doorsteps by ‘signposting’ them into unpopular homeless hostels run by the charity St Mungos.

This lack of money and ideas for the homeless starkly contrasted with the Vicar’s decision five days later at his cabinet meeting to hand over £692k to a Southville-based consultancy firm to continue running the BOTTLE YARD FILM STUDIOS in Hengrove. This is the film studio that’s already receiving about £1m in public money every year according to the council’s published expenditure accounts. The studios appear especially popular with BBC producers looking for cheap, publicly subsidised deals.

The Reverend and his Cabinet decided to HAND OVER MORE PUBLIC MONEY – grabbed from a restructured loan deal relating to the shadowy Hengrove Park housing development – to the city’s creative industries despite this council owned film studio and its firm of consultants providing NO MEANINGFUL ACCOUNTS or BUSINESS PLAN to support their large financial demands on the public purse.

The Rev and his cabinet have therefore handed over money earmarked for one of the city’s most deprived areas on the basis of UNSUBSTANTIATED CLAIMS by council bosses that this studio will make a £100k surplus next year and – an even more UNLIKELY CLAIM – that it is generating £16m for the city’s economy every year.

Naturally The Reverend’s house-trained Cabinet agreed to this nonsense with no questions asked. HRH Helen of Holland, the cabinet member responsible, gushed that the EVIDENCE-FREE PIFFLE supplied by senior council bosses was “A GOOD NEWS REPORT“. While Deputy Mayor Estella “Tinkerbell” Tinknell only seemed bothered about “developing our media profile as a VIBRANT FILM AND MEDIA CITY“. Presumably regardless of the cost or the fact most of us couldn’t give a toss about “media cities,” whatever they are?

Moreover, the true cost of the council’s latest publicly funded creative industries VANITY PROJECT was carefully hidden by the Rev’s senior bosses who neglected to explain properly that a further £0.6m is also required to buy the studio’s FREEHOLD. That’s a total of £1.3m being poured in then. The same senior bosses also forgot to explain if there’s any RISK attached to their expenditure, projected to gain a paltry income of £100k a year from the studios. Is this the world’s first risk-free business?

The average whelk stall wouldn’t be run like this, let alone a MAJOR PUBLICLY FUNDED PROJECT. But who cares if we’re keeping creative industries bigwigs in the style to which they’ve become accustomed and we’re “developing our media profile as a vibrant film and media city”?

Meanwhile, as the Vicar shovels our cash into creative industries vanity projects, the homeless can make do with a grotty little PR relaunch and photo op can’t they

GAGA’S ‘ENTERPRISING’ RE-RELOCATION SEES HENGROVE SNUBBED!

Looks like Mayor Fergo’s increasingly isolated and absurd Chief Exec NICOLA ‘LADY GAGA’ YATES has managed to piss of a lot of her staff who’ve been dispatched to ABU GHRAIB, her ugly new City Council headquarters on Temple Street.

Now Gaga has announced that 155 of these staff, having been forcibly removed from the so-called Park View Campus in Hengrove to this new hellhole HQ, are to be MOVED BACK AGAIN after just a few months to make way for Gaga and her entourage who’ve decided they want the space temporarily while the Council House is refurbished.

The BRISTOLIAN understands that horrifying snob Gaga rejected out of hand a temporary move to Hengrove, insisting she needed to be near the ‘Temple Quarter Enterprise Zone’ (see issue #4.5) and what she calls the “business community”. Although an insider told us, “to be honest, I think she just likes hanging around wealthy people, and there’s not many of them in Hengrove.”

Staff who are being forced to make way for Gaga and her growing gang of OVERPAID HANGERS-ON are said to be fuming. We’ve heard of at least two who sold their cars once they no longer needed to travel to south Bristol every day. What happens to them now? Will Gaga compensate them?

And how much has this pointless escapade cost the council taxpayer?