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Sunday, 29 January 2012

Exhibition Rd-White Fur Coat Class - Self-Indulgent, Loud and Vulgar.

The Dame is-and you had better believe it-politically detached. Were the Rotten Borough in the hands of a LibDem or Labour majority there would doubtless be the same travesties: it is the by product of the Acton dictum...'Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely'.
There are excellent Conservative councillors, but they find it difficult having their voices heard. The Dame would very much liked her devotees to nominate those who stand out.
In the meantime she is very happy to highlight this comment from Cllr Dent Coad.

Cllr E Dent Coad has left a new comment on your post "Exhibition Road-A Stain on the Royal Borough":

Fly on the Wall 18.45, thank you for your kind words. My views on profligate spending are well known; this scheme is not fit for purpose and the need for expensive and constant cleaning puts it into the white fur coat class - self-indulgent, loud and vulgar.

Good public realm should whisper, not shout, it should be functional and easy to maintain,using materials that will age graciously. There are excellent, creative, and even exciting examples all over Europe; this is not one of them.

And in the context of the brutal and ruthless cuts coming our way in the Council budget, this is unforgivable.


  1. Well put....I am a staunch Conservative at a national level but I will not vote for the likes of Moylan, Cockell and his lickspittles.

  2. Cllr E Dent Coad30 January 2012 at 07:36

    Thank you for your kind comments.

    There were serious concerns about this scheme from the earliest days. I was told that it would be like 'the Ramblas of Barcelona' which is such nonsense. It is not lined with hotels, cafes and restaurants in the 'barri gotic', it is a vehicle and pedestrian thoroughfare in a district of academia and museums and is all but deserted before 10am and after 6pm.

    I've visited the Ramblas since the 1970s and the sensitive historic refurbishment and improvements over the years, which include very stylish disabled access to the Metro, cost a fraction/sqm of Exhibition Road ; I can find out if anyone is interested.

    Friends at the V&A tell me they hate the new design and are waiting for a serious accident.

  3. Cllr Dent Coade (Labour) describes the Exhibition Rd travesty very well

    But she needs to accept the collective responsibility of K&C councillors who allowed this to happen. It is no good hiding behind the excuse of "the Conservatives are in the majority". Experienced councillors like Dent Coade need to use every democratic device available (eg the media) to expose stupidity and stop it. There are many silent councillor voices (including Tories) who are sick and tired of the Cockell ego show.

    As for the pathetic Lib Dems, where is their opinion in all of this?

  4. The Exhibition Rd farce is a disgraceful waste of public money and should be investigated by the Public Accounts Committee

  5. Kensington Resident30 January 2012 at 07:48

    What about the Public Auditor? Complaints in the past to the Auditor about Cllr Cockell's expenses ($416 and $180 meals for friends in New York charged to tax payers, New York weekends "on the house" and First Class air travel) showed that the auditor is almost as useless as the K&C Standards Committee. But the Auditor did publish a "rebuke" to the Council and Derek Myers (Town Clerk and Chief Executive of K&C) changed the expenses rules retrospectively in one of the most celebrated "Yes Minister" acts of local Government

  6. Where was Malcolm Rifkind MP when residents were complaining about this waste of public money and danger to pedestrians, especially the blind?

    Nowhere, of course.

    Just as he was nowhere when residents complained and agitated about the £100 million expenditure to tart up Holland Park School without creating one extra educational space.

    Rifkind believes that he can just sit it out and do nothing to help Kensington residents

  7. And what about the K&C Scrutiny Committees? Why did they do nothing?

    Every Cabinet Committee in K&C has a Scrutiny Committee. And then there is the Scrutiny Committee of Scrutiny Committees! Current Chairman Cllr Judith Blakeman. Previous Chairman Cllr Christopher Buckmaster.

    The Scrutiny Committees produce worthy words and are a vehicle for Cllr Cockell to administer patronage in the form of SRA's. It is a rotten system.

    Rotten to the core

  8. Cllr Caruana (Lib Dem "Leader" in K&C) what is your opinion of Exhibition Rd?

    Why has your party not taken a position? Is the spending of K&C council tax too mundane an issue for you?

  9. We knew that we would have to keep our heads down when the shit hit the fan

  10. Council Tax Payer30 January 2012 at 08:57

    8.45 is right to focus on the elaborate and expensive apparatus of Scrutiny Committees that has been set up by K&C.

    Talking shops.

    Not a word of comment/condemnation from these "committees" about the £1 million per year subsidy (and growing) that opera lover Cllr Cockell is spending on Holland Park Opera

  11. Constitution Observer30 January 2012 at 09:00

    As soon as Westminster and Hammersmith appoint their new Leaders, these people should poke their nose into the profligate affairs of K&C

    The tri Borough needs teeth

  12. 08.57, that's very unfair. Opera Holland Park has been subject to years of comment, criticism and scrutiny over the past few years from the Labour Cllrs, as well as some of the Tories. If you turned up at Council you would know this!

    This is why it is supposedly going 'self-financing' this year - though how that will work with the bunch of aria-loving incompetents headed by spendthrift Nick Brown is anybody's guess.

  13. Council Tax Payer30 January 2012 at 09:28

    9.11, "self financing" Opera Holland Park is news to me! Good news.

    And "years of criticism" from Scrutiny Committees" is news to me too. Perhaps if these committees did some press briefings and used their elbows they would become less of a talking shop and have some impact. In the meantime they are just talking shops.

    And when the "self financing" starts I trust that K&C Finance Director N Holgate will make sure that fully built up costs are used. The current subsidy includes no rent for the huge tented site and land used by Opera Holland Park and it includes no rent for the substantial office complex used for administration and ticket sales.

  14. Good points 09.28, Scrutiny members will have to keep an eye on these unquantified expenses too.


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