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Bonkers Blog October 2012

Index: 2009201020112012201320142015201620172018

8 October (Part 1) - Bexley council distorts the truth, is it Tongue in Cheek?

Thames Innovation CentreFor new readers; the TIC is the Thames Innovation Centre, “a 100% local authority controlled company” according to Bexley council’s own website. Planned by the previous Labour administration and opened under the Conservatives in 2006, since when it has swallowed shedloads of taxpayers money in an effort to keep the enterprise afloat. Bexley council also places its own business there where possible to help shore it up.

Perhaps its principal claim to fame is that Bexley council publicly demonstrated the calibre of its top management by knowingly employing a suspected paedophile as the TIC manager while mothers and children were attending a baby care business operating within the Centre. Bexley’s managers also took the decision to continue to employ him after his arrest and turned a blind eye to the misdirection of mail by another employee. However someone did lose their job over this appalling exercise in mismanagement; the whistleblower.

Each year more money has been going down the TIC drain. You may read a summary here.

On 6th April 2011, last year, the council was asked at its meeting…


Given that according to their latest available accounts, the Thames Innovation Centre Limited has lost in excess of £470,000 from 2006-2010 and still has the opportunity to draw on £100,000 (interest free for ten years) from Bexley council, would councillor Campbell consider withdrawing the option of this loan facility and using the money freed up to ensure the provision of other front-line services to the residents of the Borough?


…and in what appeared to be a reasonable if somewhat rose-tinted response, deputy council leader Colin Campbell said…

Colin Campbell's statement
The full written reply may be seen here.

So a small profit was made in 2010/11 and a bigger one was expected in the year 2011/12. Hmmm. What happened? What do the accounts for that year say?
TIC accounts
Oh dear. A “small profit” has reverted to the normal loss making position and the debts have become worse. Not much of a forecast by councillor Campbell was it? But it didn’t stop him from singing the TIC’s praises at the Finance Scrutiny Committee meeting last Thursday.

You don’t need a fish-eye lens to get a distorted view of the Thames Innovation Centre, just ask councillor Campbell. Have you ever seen a more incompetent, hopeless, out of touch, pledge breaking, make it up as you go along, back of the envelope, miserable shower? (© Edward Samuel Milliband)

Research by Nicholas Dowling, words by you know who.

 

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