Thursday, 30 October 2008


Well, what a let down it all turned out to be. The Thanet & East Kent Business Association were holding a 'working breakfast at Frank's 'gaff' in Pegwell this morning with Wills' 'PR Team' from TDC trying to give an up-beat presentation and knocking Thanet Blogs in the process.
The inspiring opening from 'Mauwice' was " At 6.30 this morning Roger was knocking on my door. "Come on Sandy.............".
Whilst explaining how he does things that other politicians don't do 'Mauwice' then continued: ... " and that is knock on the doors of companies saying " We are here and open for business." Was he talking about Northdown Carpets quoting to fit carpets in CGP's Rob Prince's Office at Manston Business Park recently with a 20% discount.? ( I wonder whether they decided on the Shogun, Primo or Puma Supreme?) I digress. 'Mauwice' handed over to 'Woger' whilst the rather un-inspiring breakfast was being chewed on . (Frank, you need to look at a better 'brekkers' for such a gathering).
'Woger' said very little new but banged the jobs, jobs , jobs message whilst having a swipe at Thanet Bloggers at regular intervals!
What was interesting were his comments about EKO LLPs dubious and unsavoury role in why the Gateway Phase 1 Plan is so poor. " This is a joint project by KCC and TDC and managed by a company called EKO LLP of which I am a director. Our aim is that having bought this land ( land at Manston Business Park) we will market it and put the money back into both our coffers and make a profit."
So there you have it. Instead of a sensible plan with X types placed on EKO LLP land at the South end of the site, 'Woger' and EKO would rather market the land for other users! This is why TDC and KCC have no integrity at all in this shambles.
'Woger' then showed the plan of Phase 1 and said " This is the plan and WE are going to put there, just by the entrance, The China Gateway building which is a shopping centre...". ( Has anyone told Westwood Cross about this? What is this WE? Who is he speaking for? TDC, EKO? I thought CGP were going to put this building there? Does 'Woger' now work for CGP with this use of WE? I thought EKO was going to sell 5 acres for £1.25 million to CGP for The Gateway Building or as CGP are strapped for cash, is this now to be a 'joint' project?)
He banged on about Chinamex still staying with the project, (although they have told Arkansas in the USA that they are holding fire on their Gateway plans there until the Global economy sorts itself out). Aigo got lots of mentions but no other companies. (Could this be that only Aigo have agreed at this stage? Ken Wills was revealing in IOTG a few weeks ago when asked by Thom Morris about companies 'coming' the reply was 'we are still talking'.)
At questions, an Acol resident with a gripe got stuck in about 'redidtribution wharehouses'; " All I am asking is that the three re-distribution buildings be moved to shield the village from the noise". ( Silly chap! TDC Planning Meeting could have asked for that on 9th Oct and failed to do on mis-direction from the Chair).
To murmurs and grumbles of ' I have heard nothing new' the audience began to get up from their tables and head for the door.
If they had LISTENED carefully, they would realise they did hear some interesting admissions. "WE.....? SHOPPING CENTRE.......? PROFIT INTO OUR COFFERS......... (sod the people of Acol who TDC represent?)
I almost forgot. 'Woger' couldn't understand why Bloggers in Thanet were so anti, whilst Wigan seemed so positive about its Gateway project (CGP involved there to!). He fails to grasp that open countryside; high quality agricultural land and an aquifer in Thanet are quite different when you envisage covering them in concrete than Westwood Park, Wigan. It is in the town itself ; Wigan BC has spent millions on turning it from a contaminated ex Power Station into a business park.
'Woger' is clearly incapable of grasping this essential difference or doesn't want to admit it. Well, he might find that whilst our Councillors felt they had no option about Phase 1, they do not seem so enthusiastic about Phases 2 and 3 and there-in lies future strife!


Anonymous said...

And businessmen paid £11 for this?

I always thought these events were quite high-powered but then this is the Leader and his conjoined twin.

It reads more like a comedy sketch so I hope those who sat through it got their money back as by all accounts the breakfast wasn't much cop either.

Anonymous said...

Irritation at the bloggers of Thanet is a good thing. That means we have become a force worthy of being called notable. It also means that there is a general background level of fear and a lack of understanding among the general elected as to what blogging is and how it works.

This too is good because it means that as blogging grows (and it will at a rate that is hard to imagine) that politicians at all levels will have to consider what is being said.

If only because blogs can influence voters. (not to mention being written by them).

There is also a PR adage that for every person that speaks up there is at least ten others that feel as strongly but have not spoken up. Not to mention the (often) hundreds that lean in a similar direction.


They - ie Sandy and Roger - wouldn't allow me to film the meeting, so I didn't go. They don't want me to film them at all talking about China Gateway, but are prepared to have a private meeting with me to explain it all. No wonder Thanet has a reputation for reaching important decisions behind closed doors.

They'll talk to people who pay £11 for breakfast, but won't hold a public meeting where people can raise their misgivings and put their worries to them.

Anonymous said...

What's this about selling off beaches?

Bertie Biggles said...

Given TDC's parlous finances, if its not tied down with covenants,they'll flog it. Bit of Broadstairs and Margate above the tide line is TDC's I think. We can at least thank Cllr Wise for carefully monitoring TDC's deposits and moving them in time. He would have been a better choice talking at EKBA than the comedy duo. Come to think of it, would he make a better leader?

Anonymous said...

What's all this 'our development' and 'our coffers'?I thought the developer was CGP who have to take the risks (and the profits). Shouldn't we be told if TDC & KCC and CGP have joined forces?

Shouldn't any profits that accrue to EKO LLP be put back into KCC and TDC's funds to improve services? Another chance for the county to waste money on pointless projects? No, let's see the money being used for better social services, school meals, roads etc.

Anonymous said...

Agree with Matt, the bloggers are doing their job. If nothing more is achieved, I think TDC will begin to realise we can't be hoodwinked again. Sounds like the Breakfast Show was a waste of time and heard the food was rubbish too.

Anonymous said...

Yes Matt - blogging in Thanet is a good thing. TDC should be held accountable by whatever means. Blogging highlights the deficits in this bankrupt (in more sense that one) administration and can help bring about change and make them answerable for their decisions.

Mollie said...

I think if you set yourself up as untouchable you should be prepared to take a fall. TDC deserve the verbals they are getting. I do think KCC are getting away with it though. After all they own East Kent Opportunities Limited Liability Partnership(EKO LLP) together with TDC, according to Mr Latchford their coffers will be swelled as well. They are also linked to Eurokent and the shocking proposals at Haine Road - 700 new homes when this is development land for jobs in the Local Plan! Perhaps we should all be looking at a broader picture.

Curious said...

How strange - now you come to mention it we also have a disused contaminated power station site that could be used for a China Gateway - after all if it was good enough for St Augustine and the Romans at Rutupiae to use as a gateway it should be good enough for the Chinese surely? Why not build it there?

Bertie Biggles said...

Too costly perhaps to clean up and at the moment we have some ground work going in for the shore based electrical thingee (substation?) for lots of wind turbines?

Anonymous said...

Them not liking blogs is a very good thing. Shows they have got the willies.