Tuesday 19 February 2013

Council accused of a "whitewash"

The Evening Standard have reported that LBHF are being accused of a whitewash over their investigation into wrongdoing by officers over the Earls Court consultation. By abandoning the Deloitte's investigation at phase one, before talking to residents, the prosecution has effectively refused to take evidence from the alleged victims.
As you can imagine, the residents of the two threatened estates are not pleased. Many of them have written and submitted evidence in the past of conversations with officers and councillors who they say made explicit offers in return for support for the scheme.

Monday 11 February 2013

Another club stooge!

We hadn't intended to comment on the new Chelsea Supporters Trust.  As an organisation they appear to be following the standard Supporters Trust model and seem well intentioned, committed and eager to be truly representative of fans from all sections of the support. Time will tell how this pans out and what sort of organisation emerges. 

However, we have to confess to some surprise (and not just for the obvious reasons, either) at a piece on CFCnet yesterday which addressed the existence of this new group. It has raised all manner of suspicions. We quote the relevant section below - the emphases are ours;

"Finally, CFCnet was asked about Chelsea Supporters' Trust, who had a well-publicised meeting after the Wigan game.  We want it put on public record that we have nothing against this new organisation.  However, we are not in a position to either endorse it or give it any publicity until we are clear about their stance on CPO.

Simply put, any organisation claiming to represent fans' interests must back either SaynoCPO or Campaign55's overall stance(s).  Failure to do that, in our view, is either a demonstration of incompetence or, even worse, the mark of the hidden hand of the Club manoeuvring behind the scenes.  We fear the latter.  For that reason we are holding judgement on the new Chelsea Supporters' Trust until we know their stance on CPO."

It is difficult to know where to begin when considering this statement.  The breathtaking arrogance of two small and unrepresentative minority groups dictating to a new fans organisation who they should back? The demonstration, yet again, that these people believe that anybody who disagrees with them in any way is an enemy, who is created by and/or in thrall to Chelsea FC? The inherent menace in the statement? Take your pick.  

We already know that there is, for example, an absolute assumption that all votes cast at AGMs and EGMs have been cast by club stooges and "dodgy shares" despite evidence to the contrary. But we have to confess to some real surprise that anybody would actually make this accusation against CST on a public website and it causes us, against our original instinct, to ask some questions. Does the author officially speak for SayNoCPO or Campaign 55? Do Campaign 55 and SayNoCPO agree with the author's comments? Are people involved with Campaign 55 or SayNoCPO associated or involved with the new CST? (we have noted the individuals involved so far of course). If they are, then the infant Trust is in danger of imploding with internecine fighting before it has even stood on its feet and fans with a more open view, who want to be part of the new trust, should demand to know what those behind it are drawing them in to. Indeed, is the Trust just a new face of SayNoCPO/Campaign 55 and the piece referred to above just a clumsy feint to put us everybody off the scent? We will be watching very closely whatever the truth and we genuinely make no assumptions at this stage; it would be unfair to do so but the comments from CFCnet have set alarm bells ringing....

We do, though,  have sympathy with CST for having joined the ranks of those accused of being a club stooge. We would like to say it is a select group but unfortunately there appear to be many of us.  There is no question that a great deal of work has gone into the inauguration of the Trust and it must be depressing to see fellow fans condemning them in such terms already. 

We encourage them in their aim of a constructive relationship with the club. It would appear there is an appetite for such a group if their launch meeting is anything to go by and so we must take them at face value and wish them the best of luck. We suspect they are going to need it.

Wednesday 6 February 2013

Some updates on the battle of Earls Court

We have come into possession of a copy of the WKGG residents' latest newsletter in which they give details of a new petition they have going.  We also link to another blog post on the matter by Dave Hill of The Guardian.  

It is our belief that CFC continue to discuss EC with the owners of the site, despite protestations by the council and the apparent "shoulder to shoulder" stance between CapCo and LBHF during the latest rounds of the increasingly acrimonious battle. You may have been perplexed recently by the strident and apparently unprompted statement from LBHF on the impossibility of a stadium at the site (to the effect "neither we nor the developer wants a stadium"etc.) You may have wondered what drew this outburst. So did we.... 

However, words of caution; things continue to be weighted against the club but it hasn't given up yet....


Extract from WKGG newsletter below. We neither endorse nor vouch for the accuracy of their information, nor the charges and accusations contained in the extract.

"Petition to the Government

There has been much reporting of exciting developments in our campaign, including in the Guardian and on ITV news, which you can read and watch on the media coverage page of our website detailed below.

In March, the Secretary of State will decide whether to allow the Council to sell our homes to EC Properties LP, a firm whose sole investment is £2 from its Limited Partner registered in the tax-haven of Jersey, and which is fabricated to funnel hundreds of millions of pounds in profits to CapCo.

We shall petition the Government not to allow this scheme because we are against demolition, it would harm vulnerable neighbours, destroy 761 decent homes, is criminal, and would undermine the economy.

The Prime Minister promised power to the people and freedom for communities to determine their future. We shall ask the Government to give us the vote so we can decide whether our homes should be sold off, and request it fulfils its undertaking to implement the law that would liberate the local community to take ownership of our neighbourhood. We are the People's Estates, and we shall not be moved!"

Dave Hill's blog.