Before getting onto the part where our public face throws his hat into the ring for the forthcoming elections in May, there’s another matter to draw to your attention.
You may have heard that Folkestone & Hythe District Council have appointed Arup and Fletcher Priest Architects to assist the masterplan design work for the Ship Street site, which has been derelict as far back as 1956.
Ship Street site – with gas containers
Arup will lead the technical design team, with Fletcher Priest as architect and urban design lead.
The Council purchased the Ship Street site on the 06.04.2021, for £480,000, according to Land Registry documents. Just days later the Council put out a tender for a development partner for the site. The value given on the tender was £18m.
Now what is curious, is Fletcher Priest Architects has worked for the Council as a contractor, on two prior occasions. Purchase Orders were raised as can be seen below.
And then of course, they were paid. Again that is in the Council’s payment to suppliers data, inclusive of VAT
Part 10 of the Council’s Constitution, it’s legal framework, and which MUST be followed by ALL officers, states:
That all contracts of a value of £5,000 or more are included on the Council’s Contract Register;
So how is that Fletcher Priest got paid, when they’ve never been on the Contract register? It’s beyond all reasonable doubt the Council have once again broken their own rules and procedures.
We have all too often pointed out the irregularities around Council contracts and council financial procedures. An example is when the Council recently made their reserves of £245m disappear. Prior to that they made a £107,000 pounds of procurement card data vanish. We do wonder if certain officers of our council are fully paid up members of the Magic Circle, as their abilities to make things vanish is astonishing.
This deeply concerns us. So, our public face (pictured) is going to put his money where his mouth is, and stand as a candidate in the May elections, in the Folkestone Central Ward, as an Independent.
He, like us, is tired that money appears to be walking out the door, when there are no contracts in place. What is odd is not a single elected Cllr seems concerned about the public pound. Nor do any of them appear to be actively seeking answers to how this can be happening so frequently.
We have no doubt he will raise these issues. If elected in May, he will
follow the public pound,
protect the public pound
And donate his allowance to a different local charity each financial year,
He’ll be doing a necessary service for our community by protecting the public pound; sharing £20,000 plus to local charities and looking after our valuable heritage. No other Councillor has done since the last election, in May 2019.
The Shepway Vox Team
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The Transients – Where’s all the Money Gone