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Bonkers Blog January 2015

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1 January (Part 1) - Bexley council: We don’t do honesty

One of Bexley council’s bright ideas for raising money is to sell off the small parcels of land it owns around the borough. It doesn’t seem particularly contentious, it’s not going to reduce library services for half the population or deprive children of a playground.

Last October cabinet member Linda Bailey published on the council’s website a list of proposed sites for sale but it was very quickly withdrawn from view. Any example of Bexley’s lack of transparency should set the alarm bells ringing.

TweetAccording to Blackfen Past and Present - and councillor Daniel Francis has been Tweeting the same message - Bexley council is planning to sell off 27 of its 106 public parks too. This would be cabinet member Alex Sawyer’s preserve. He won’t talk about it either.

Selling parks is a whole different kettle of pond life from disposing of a few oddments of redundant (in some cases) land.

In keeping with the tradition of secrecy that pervades this rotten borough Bexley council has refused FOI requests about their plans which must surely be further proof that some sort of underhand skullduggery is in progress.

The reason given is “it would inhibit free and frank discussions” but that is not a legal exemption under the Act that the Information Commissioner has troubled to put on his website.

Secretly planning to close or sell parks bears all the hallmarks of our dishonest council. How can the council run a genuine consultation on the financial future of the borough if the public has no idea what it is ‘voting’ for? Oh silly me, there is no such thing as a genuine consultation in Bexley is there? Once in a while you may see some tinkering at the edges - I can only think of one such instance - but ignoring public comment totally is the usual result.

Bexley not wanting you to know anything seems like a good reason to republish what has been discovered, but there are no parks listed below I’m afraid. (Scroll or click.)


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