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Friday, 5 June 2015


The Dame is angry....angry that these demonstrations against the squandering of millions of pounds on Opera Holland Park were ever necessary.

Opera Holland Park sucks in millions of much needed resident's tax for the benefit of just a few.
Most OPH goers come from outside the borough but, leaving that aside, the real question is whether the council should be funding opera when first class opera at the ENO and Covent Garden exists a few miles away.

These demonstrations are embarrassing. They need to be stopped. 
The best way of stopping them is by getting the council to stop frittering taxpayers' resources on fripperies...and OPH is a frippery.
George Osborne talks of 'small government'.....maybe this council should be thinking similar thoughts. 
Using taxpayer's money to support opera is NOT what a council should be doing.


  1. What does it take to get through to elected representatives that tax payers do not want Council Tax spent on a civic opera? It is wrong, wasteful, unnecessary, extravagant and pointless.

    An indulgence by middle class councillors wishing to be more than they are.

    1. It is part of the Cockell legacy. A rodent born wishing to be more than himself.

  2. £12 million of Council Tax already pumped into this stupidity. Corruption in Hornton Street to hide half of the spending by publishing subsidy figures that are a bare faced lie in order to conceal the true cost to tax payers. For example, the tent erected, dismantled and stored "for free" every year. The stage and seats (£1 million) provided "for free".

    No rates.

    No rent for facilities.

    Staff costs hidden because they are "employed by the Library".

    FIFA learnt its tricks from Hornton Street

  3. A bad and expensive joke.

  4. Money, money, money..........MONEY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    1. It's ONLY money.... let's p*ss it against the wall.... hoorrah

  5. Financial Analyst6 June 2015 at 09:21

    The business plan is very simple. Facilities, buildings, staff, systems (eg billing), tent, seats etc provided "free" and paid for by tax payers. Plus £500k subsidy per year from Council Tax to help pay for singers and orchestra. The balance of money for singers and orchestra comes from ticket sales, Friends Of Holland Park and the Investec sponsorship.

    Investec knows a good thing when it sees it. Their sponsorship buys "discount tickets" to entertain their clients in the (convenient) centre of Kensington in a beautiful park setting from an installation that is HEAVILY subsidised by tax payers.

    Opera Holland Park was originally a cottage industry curiosity in a small tent to occupy a bored Council Entertainments Officer (Michael Volpe). By a combination of guile and flattery Volpe egged on the socially ambitious and vain Cockell to invest more and more of tax payers money to expand the frippery to its current huge scale. A black hole for tax payers money.

  6. Cockell is now long gone. What is exactly Nick Paget Brown for?????

    1. Apparently he's for listening?!

    2. To socially cleanse the borough... demolish social housing and allow the property developers to profiteer.

      At an Ask Nick Event he stated " The biggest obstacle to 'middle bracket' earners buying into the borough are long life tenants and right to buy leaseholders" Apparently we, who live, work and were born in Chelsea should be driven out and our homes demolished.

  7. Residents and voters of Kensington! The decision to give £5m of YOUR money to the failing opera is to be made on Thursday evening, 6.30pm at the Cabinet meeting.

    You may wish to make your feelings felt, beforehand by writing to Cabinet members, or on the night in person. This is all part of the democratic process, so don't be afraid.

  8. Financial Analyst left out an important consideration. The Council has agreed to "waive" any rates and rent on the facilities that it has given gratis to Opera Holland Park. On the open market, rent and rates for the tent and ancillary buildings in this part of London would be ca £500k per year. This needs to be added on to the council tax subsidy.

    A total subsidy of £1.5 million per year from Council Tax


  9. If I get some warblers in, can I get £1.5 million pa from the council to run a day centre for the elderly in N Ken? RBKC closed the excellent service for vulnerable elderly people two years ago because the council needed to make savings. Hmmmm

  10. Dear All , I could not find mention of the opera on the cabinet's agenda for today !
    Why the secrecy ??? Anyone interested can request the report to the cabinet members (dated today !!!) by contacting its author (Lyn Carpenter , Exec. Dir. of Environment , leisure and Residence Services , or by contacting RBKC Governance through the main switchboard : 7361 3000 . See ya tonight !


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