Communication problems

On Wednesday we posted about how the TMO in what we can only describe as some sort of moment of madness, decided to hold a drop in session (one of only two, and the only one in North Kensington), on the same day and at the same time as the Grenfell Silent Walk. Our post here:

https://thisisnorthkensington.wordpress.com/2018/08/15/heartless-the-tmo-sinks-to-another-low/

They have agreed to arrange to hold a drop-in session on another day and on another time – good. We did ask for a public apology but we have still not received one. They have apologised directly to a few people and groups who have contacted them, but this is not good enough. They owe all affected a public statement and apology. Why should we as traumatised residents living around the corner from Grenfell, have to chase them up to get them to do this?

And as for them being selective and making individual replies, this just reminds us of their attitude prior to Grenfell; cherry picking residents and residents’ associations of their choice to listen to and work with and then leaving others out in the cold.

Anyway THINK has decided to write an open email to Interim General Manager of the TMO, Andrew Taylor and demand a public apology – not to us or to a few people, but to all in and around our community who have been upset by their ridiculous, ignorant and distasteful (to say the least) decision to hold the drop-in session at the same time as the Silent Walk. We will of course, post the response and here, below, is our open email:

Dear Mr Taylor,

As you might have heard, many in and around our community of North Kensington and Ladbroke Grove were upset, shocked, insulted and outraged by the decision by the TMO to hold one of the two drop in sessions (the one in North Kensington) on the same day and at the same time as the Grenfell Silent Walk.

As yet, nobody from the TMO has issued a public apology for this – this is unacceptable to say the least.

You will understand that not only is the 14th of every month a very difficult day for many people around here anyway, but it is extremely insulting to those most affected as some people here believe that the actions or inactions of some of the executives, senior managers and senior board members at the TMO were partly responsible for what happened at Grenfell Tower.

Also members unable to make the drop-in session, which was the only one organised in North Kensington were also unable to make it to the one on the following day, due to it being held some distance away in World’s End, Chelsea.

The fact that the only drop-in session in our locality was held at such an inappropriate time has also led some to question whether there was a hidden agenda on behalf of your organisation to deliberately exclude residents from North Kensington and Ladbroke Grove from having their say.

We not only ask but demand that the TMO issues a public statement and apology right away – not to us at THINK, not to a select few individuals or groups, but to everyone affected by Grenfell.

We ask that the TMO please organise another drop in session, at a more appropriate date and time at the same location or somewhere nearby and also that your organisation takes dates and times into consideration before any further meetings or events are held in future.

THINK (This Is North Kensington blog)

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Grenfell Silent Walk – 14 months on – plus the launch of our second “Your North Kensington” Art Competition

Yesterday, 14 months on our community again came together for the Grenfell Silent Walk. It is sad to say that as time gets on, it doesn’t get any easier for us, but the one reassurance we do have is that our community is strong and supportive and we will remember the people we have lost, and we will continue to campaign for justice .together.

Here are just a few pictures taken yesterday:

Here is a composition “Grenfell In Memoriam” by friend of THINK, Bruno Diantantou (and thank you to Bruno for sharing this with us)

Sadly, as some will have seen from our previous post, there are some who either appear to be unaware, not to care or to forget or to wish to forget – let our community keep reminding them. Coping with this on top of the disaster can sometimes really take a toll on us. So this year for the second time, THINK have decided to hold our second art competition.

So here it is: the THINK “Your North Kensington” Art Competition:

Do get creative and send us pictures your work ( paintings , drawings photography, , embroidery, sculpture ) – absolutely anything that you believe feel sums up our beautiful diverse vibrant local area – to thisisnorthkensington@gmail.com

The competition is open to all ages and the winner will receive £50 (plus a blog post of course!) The competition will close on the 16th of September.

The Grenfell main picture on our post was designed by our very well-deserved competition winner Karimah Bint Dawoud. We felt that Karimah’s work really summed up this community and we thank her for sharing her work with us.

We very much look forward to seeing your work – our community speaks with many voices but together we are one and united.

Heartless: The TMO sinks to another low

Some of our readers may recall last autumn when we posted about the TMO and why we believed for the purposes of the Grenfell Inquiry, it should remain in place.

https://thisisnorthkensington.wordpress.com/2017/10/17/grenfell-and-why-the-tmo-have-to-remain-in-place-for-the-timebeing-anyway/

Yes, for those not in the know the TMO still exists and its’ function now is to comply with the Inquiry and with other legal claims – and it is not responsible for current management of our social housing – which is in the hands of RBKC (for now) .

RBKC/TMO tenants and leaseholders have been sent a document regarding the future of the TMO. Here is the link:

https://lookaside.fbsbx.com/file/EXPLANATORY_LEAFLET_FINAL.pdf?token=AWxIkbcBZW3B5n_q5JVfHztJokbtg9epBbenidIPAMS-i6H0UzhhqyKyWtizIcsF4xP49abcZrzhQSTmrm_9wf2ZS-_wLHD5s7qybge78Eil2YvDVaJFocY_TpTl85Ep3NU6tGxkWADBbqxPkA9DFVfyqQxeLwhdDGkON_GUQyp7v8btzk7peQ8GrIWervwG5SY

Now THINK have our own views regarding several points in this document, but we were utterly shocked and disgusted to see when one of the two drop-in sessions for their residents was. Unbelievably (or perhaps not so) the session in the north of the borough (at Portobello Community Centre) was for yesterday the 14th of August at the same time as the Grenfell Silent Walk – disgraceful.

We do not know who was responsible for such a dreadful decision, whether they are in fact stupid, or ignorant or just do not care about residents (or all the above ) – either way the person responsible for this should resign right now.

There is only one more drop-in session scheduled for this evening – in Chelsea from 6:30- 8:30pm at World’s End Community Centre, 16 Blantyre Street, London SW10 OEH.

Short notice but we would encourage all resident TMO members who can make it to go along and make their voices heard.

Members can also write to the TMO and submit their views at

KCTMO, 346 Kensington High Street,

Kensington, London W14 8NS

Email:

companysecretariat@kctmo.org.uk

The TMO have indicated they wish to hear what members have to say as this will form part of the final changes for proposals for the EGM (Extraordinary General Meeting) which is planned for Thursday 27th September.

To us this appalling scheduling for a drop-in session on the 14th just looks like yet another case of poor treatment by the TMO towards residents in North Kensington.

THINK believe it is important for all TMO members to have their say. We also demand that the TMO management issue a public apology and that they reschedule a new drop-in session in the north of the borough forthwith.

Holiday Inn Forum Cromwell Road – stop the towers meeting today

Another day, another controversial development, and yet another RBKC story….

This time it involves developers Queensgate Investments and Rockwell and proposed redevelopment of the Holiday Inn Forum Hotel in Cromwell Road.

For further information please see From The Hornets Nest here:

http://fromthehornetsnest.blogspot.com/2018/07/rock-rockwells-boat-now.html?m=1

And here (with details of how you can object to the planning application and donate to the campaign) :

http://fromthehornetsnest.blogspot.com/2018/07/stop-holiday-inn-development-nightmare.html?m=1

Some THINKers will be going along to a meeting today at 6:30pm at St Mary The Boltons, The Boltons, London SW10 9TB

We urge all residents who have concerns about the proposed development to come along.

Yes it’s all about the money that these greedy overseas developers hope to make and THINK have also been doing some digging and will very much have something more to say on some associates of the developers who appear to think nothing of blighting residents with dust, noise, pollution and health risks for eight years – we do have some very interesting information to share with our readers later on.

But for now we are off to the meeting and to do what our sorry excuse for a council should be doing; listening to local residents.

The Rotten Borough of Kensington and Chelsea lives up to its’ nickname – again

This is a scene from the Planning Committee meeting yesterday evening at Kensington Town Hall when members of the trade union United Voices of the World (UVW) representing the striking cleaners outside the Town Hall today turned up there.

We know that some in the council may not support the cleaning staff going on strike, but we believe they do an outstanding job, deserve to be paid the London Living Wage at the least and if anyone thinks it is a good point to criticise these dedicated and hard working people; we doubt that their critics could exist on less than £9 an hour.

Earlier this afternoon , THINKers had been down there to show our support and we had heard something of what would have been very good news later in the day that RBKC were going to take their cleaning services back in-house (the cleaners are employed by constructor Amey – net worth over £2 billion) .

Our council had supposedly issued a statement about this and hinted to some sort of consideration that they would bring the council’s cleaning services back in house; but then then they retracted it! Words fail us sometimes…

This is no way for ANY local authority to act and we wonder whose fault it was this time – the Leadership or the “communications” (PR”) team, or both? As well as improving pay and conditions for staff, we believe that further staff improvements to the council need to be made, and whoever is behind giving misleading statements and playing games really ought to be dismissed right away.

Of course, THINK have spotted someone in the picture (far left) who is not.a member or supporter of the cleaners and UVW – why it’s THINK “regular” ,Cabinet member for Enterprise and Skills, Cllr Catherine “Lady False” Faulks!!

Apparently Lady False had said that she had supported the strike – well good – and agreed to commit to get the Leadership Team to meet the UVW on the picket line tomorrow morning – let’s hope so. . Maybe a victory is in sight?

But if it is, we hope that Lady False will not have the false modesty to claim this as some victory of her own – if it is a success it will be because of these workers, standing up and making their voices heard powerfully.

If RBKC Tories suddenly do decide to act after ignoring them for a considerable amount of time, this will be a good result, but can remind others that it was because of Tory council policies to contract out the services to companies like Amey that caused this situation in the first place.

THINK can also show those who are interested in RBKC communications just how she has reacted to ordinary North Kensington residents on Twitter after once having a tasteless row on there with us (over Grenfell Tower and Maxilla) and also obviously being unhappy with a few of our previous blog posts about her:

RBKC cleaners are a powerful voice and show of strength at the Town Hall

Above and below are some scenes of the cleaners’ strike at Kensington Town Hall.

THINKers came down to the Town Hall to support them. We believe that this culture of contracting out of our services with an end result of contractors like Amey cashing in and making millions at the expense of the lowest paid workers

Our local Kensington MP and. RBKC Labour councillor for Golborne, Emma Dent Coad was supporting them too.

Here is an article she wrote for the Huffington Post:

https://m.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/cleaners-strike-living-wage_uk_5b6867a8e4b0de86f4a3b509?8x

Labour councillor for Goborne Cllr Pat Mason was also at the Town Hall to give his support. Here is a picture of him giving a television interview outside:

Labour group leader Cllr Robert Atkinson had sent THINK a statement :”Labour Councillors and supporters have campaigned for decent wages and conditions for all who work for the council for many years. Initially the Tory Councillor supporters of the unbridled free market treated our concerns with scorn and ignored the evidence under their noses that many of our workers could not live off the wages paid by the council. But as even Tories like George Osborne gradually realised the justice and benefits of paying the Living Wage , RBKC dragged their feet. Last year they bowed to our pressure and finally agreed to pay the London living wage to the few people the council directly employs . But stubbornly the new Tory Council has washed its hands of the starvation wages that its subcontractors (such as Amey)continue to pay. This is why we must all support the current strike action and all Trades Union activities to secure for everyone wages that allow all people to live decently of the fruits of their labours”.

Well this is very good to see and hear from the Labour side of RBKC – but of course they are the opposition! As for the Conservatives, Emma’s article says back in 2011 former Tory councillor and then- cabinet member for finance (who held on to nearly £300 million council reserves) Warwick Lightfoot said “it is the role of national Government through the social security system to top up earnings in relation to family circumstances”

So we Mr Lightfoot expected taxpayers to pic up the bill for greedy multinational companies underpaying their workers? But of course the low paid could never expect much support from him anyway. Here is an old video of then leader Nick Paget-Brown and a seemingly “well refreshed” Cllr Lightfoot overturning a Labour and Lib Dem motion to fund a new foodbank in RBKC after the borough’s existing one was closed :

“Liquid Lunch” is no longer on the council (he was deselected) but he is sometimes around North Kensington by many locals (usually staggering around Portobello Road and Ladbroke Grove ) . Here is our mock up picture of this shameful soul;

Labour councillors’ attempts to introduce motions in support of the cleaners have also previously received this response from former Tory Mayor and former Tory councillor for Abingdon Ward until 2016 , Joanna Gardner:””There are good reasons for believing that a London Living Wage could have a negative impact on the levels of employment which are critical to our national recovery” Gardner had also argued that many of the cleaners may have a second job or have family members bringing in additional wages – that’s right Joanna Gardner, they’re really raking it in and living in the lap of luxury!

She deserves an appropriate picture from us for that:

Yes both Lightfoot and Gardner may no longer be on the council – but we will remind people that some of the councillors who voted against the Labour motions and who contracted out services are still here -and that our leader Elizabeth “Dizzy Lizzy” Campbell has past form over this

RBKC does a U-turn after trying to axe Grenfell night service for traumatised North Kensington residents (again)

Pictured on the right (as the “Grim Reaper”) is Robyn Fairman. She is Executive Director for the Grenfell Team at RBKC.

Pictured on the left (holding the axe) is Sheila Durr. She is the Director for Communities and People at the Grenfell Team. Back in a post January, we reported on RBKC attempting to get rid of night services before Christmas at Notting Hill Methodist Church for local residents who are traumatised after Grenfell – utterly heartless.

See our post from back then on the Grenfell Recovery Scrutiny Committee (which briefly mentions Sheila Durr) here:

https://thisisnorthkensington.wordpress.com/2018/01/18/is-the-grenfell-recovery-scrutiny-committee-a-farce-think-scrutinises-some-of-the-scrutinisers/

Last week a joint statement was issued by RBKC and CNWL (Central North West London NHS) that the night service would be moving from the Church on the 1st of August. The statement did not give much information and it was only seen by a handful of locals. In fact some turned up to the Church that night to find it closed.

Of course one reason that some responsible for these decisions may give for axing the night service is that they may think not a lot of residents are making use of it. But then we can remind them that they have in fact refused to advertise this properly (since last year) so quite a lot of locals have not known about these services.

This statement also said that they were “working closely with the Notting Dale Advisory Group”. Really? Oh wait, surely they mean the “Residents’ Advisory Board” ? That is not what we have heard from local residents – we would dust off one off our Piglet-Pie awards to give RBKC for this, but this really is no laughing matter.

Anyway here is some good news that they have done a U-turn – we have received this statement from Grenfell Support saying that the night service will not be moving from Monday 6th August as was previously advertised –

https://grenfellsupport.org.uk/#1531297892758-cf2045d9-3f77

Let’s just hope this information is accurate and we are pleased the service is safe for now anyway.

One thing, which as local residents who live directly in the area can tell the council about us that many of us in the area get distressed by helicopters flying around here as this happened on the morning of the fire and many of us get distressed and end up reliving it all over again as a result.

While we accept that neither Ms Fairman nor Ms Durr might be in much of a position to personally do something about this, we can tell them that last week, there were a few incidents of a helicopter flying around Grenfell Tower around 2am in the morning. This caused much distress to many local residents in the community in the small hours and has also been filmed by a few people.

As neither Robyn Fairman, Sheila Durr or in fact the vast majority of their colleagues actually live in North Kensington, let THINK tell them that a night service is required (many people around here are still suffering from PTSD, sleep disorders and depression among other conditions) and that the least they can do in their supposed positions is to listen to this community and act upon our needs – still we are not seeing much evidence of this.

Also regarding services for traumatised residents, RBKC fail to notify most of this community regularly about which services are available at The Curve through sending locals regular copies of the Grenfell Support Newsletter – we have also previously posted on this as well as residents not engaging with services because they are not informed about them here:

https://thisisnorthkensington.wordpress.com/2018/07/15/dumb-and-dumber/

RBKC and CNWL in our view need to not only engage with the Residents’ Associations, but also deliver accurate and reliable information to peoples’ doors and post notices around the community keeping locals informed and up to date.

Of course some of those responsible seem to ignore the facts that some of the most vulnerable people here may not always belong to a residents’ association (not that there has been much engagement from RBKC with local residents’ associations anyway), some will not be familiar with the website, have language barriers or even in a few cases, not have internet access at all.

Also others have informed THINK that the website link for Grenfell Support is not always updated regularly either – so much for the communications budget!

As for services The Curve, yes some residents are finding them helpful (in particular some of the arts groups and the alternative therapies there) but we do remind RBKC and CWNL that The Curve can also sometimes be quite a noisy environment with radios and televisions blaring out and small children running around the place and that it is not necessarily a suitable environment for some other distressed residents who require peace and quiet. Some lone adults, older people and other vulnerable residents are feeling very excluded from provision of help and services offered already.

Yes there is no ideal “one size fits all” help available, which it is why it is all the more important for them to communicate with this community properly instead of the typical Rotten Borough style of referring to an announcement of closure a “consultation” without ever consulting people in the first place……..

THINK will again remind RBKC that they cannot simply sweep our concerns and needs under the carpet and hope all this will somehow magically disappear.They were part of what caused the Grenfell Tower disaster and they have a duty of responsibility to help our community heal. But still some appear to forget this.

We have also noted that Robyn Fairman’s previous position before she came to RBKC was Head of Strategy at Lewisham Council. Well, many around here have very real concerns that is is a strategy of this council to neglect this community and simply hope (as we have said before) that this will go away. Well the more this council continues to ignore us and to make blind decisions purely based on their own assumptions and lack of knowledge of this community with regards to vital services here, the worse things will get.

Our community which has been through so much, deserves so much better than to be treated in such a dismissive, ignorant, insensitive and evasive manner , and we say that it is high time for some of the incompetent staff who have only acted to make the problems suffered by a traumatised community far worse. to be axed from their jobs.

Residents of RBKC are “Always Knowingly Undertold”

This picture was taken after the “Leadership Team” AKA public RBKC Cabinet PR exercise meeting – yesterday

THINK were disappointed to hear that despite the recommendations of the Grenfell Scrutiny Committee and the success of our friend Isis Amlak’s petition , there is not a guarantee in stone that RBKC will not charge traumatised people from the Walkways extra rent after the 30th of September.

Maxine Holdsworth , RBKC director of Housing Needs gave such a vague answer in response to questions on this – she might as well have been talking in some sort of obscure code.

We received a clearer answer from Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for housing Kim Taylor-Smith after the meeting who told us every case will be dealt with on an individual basis – really? .

Well that is not quite what “Muddler Maxine” said in the meeting ! Seriously, do individuals and group representatives have to sidle up to our council and their officials AFTER a public meeting to get a semblance of a straight answer? Ms Holdsworth’s tendency to talk to talk and talk and talk and give very little information away. makes RBKC’s housing policy about as clear as mud!!

As for extra money from the Government, All RBKC Leader Cllr Elizabeth “Dizy Lizzy” Campbell, could supposedly do on this was to say “that our council but other councils too are asking for Government funds How ridiculous is this? Other local authorities do not have a disaster like Grenfell to deal with right now. If this is leadership, God help us! The best she could do for the communities that she is supposedly elected to serve, is to abandon ship, go right now (and not just take a sabbatical on her husband’s yacht this time.)

As for services to traumatised residents, well money (or lack of it) is supposedly their big concern, they scrap valuable services and information for residents and ask people to simply go online; but they can’t even manage to update information there! (Still no copies of the Grenfell Newsletter available to nearby traumatised locals by the way .)

Well they appear to regard spending our taxpayers’ money on their legal fees (yes over Grenfell) as a more important priority then helping traumatised nearby residents!

Other people in other parts of the Borough have also told us of their cuts to vital services. Well what sort of local authority supposedly taking a money saving” and “pragmatic” (not our words) approach to coping with a disaster would have a chauffeur driven Bentley ferrying their shopping about?

A bit of good news after Grenfell Recovery Scrutiny Committee listens to residents

No – the title is not a misprint and THINK have not lost our minds – we genuinely have good news to share. On Monday we shared a petition from our friend Isis Amlak demanding that the Grenfell Recovery Scrutiny Committee remove RBKC’s recommendation for a deadline set for the 30th September for residents from the Walkways, Treadgold House and Bramley House to either move back to their homes or stay in temporary accommodation and lose their secure tenancies.

This was a cruel and insensitive policy recommendation in our view. because many of these homes are located very close to Grenfell Tower and many of the residents are still very traumatised and not ready to make such a decision.

Yesterday the Grenfell Recovery Scrutiny Committee returned and really did do its’ job of scrutinising the council effectively this time – in this case by changing the wording of the recommendation to not setting a deadline.

We thank Isis for starting the petition, all who signed and shared, the residents who spoke at the meeting and the committee for listening to residents.

We have more on the meeting to report of course, but THINK are now off to the Leadership Team meeting at the Town Hall now to see if the council really does mean to listen to residents and take our points on board – we hope so but aren’t exactly convinced……..

Our community will take years to recover from Grenfell and we are not ever going to let those who have a duty of responsibility to forget it.

“Not in Kansas anymore”: The Rotten Borough’s shameful treatment of traumatised residents (and an urgent petition)

Just when some of us thought that some at RBKC could not sink any lower; they have hit a new low with regards to housing policy for some in our community who are affected by Grenfell.

Yes, shockingly this council has made recommendations on housing residents from the Walkways, Treadgold House and Bramley House, which basically amounts to an ultimatum to force residents to either move back into their former homes by the 30th of September this year (only two months away) to keep their secure tenancies or that if they stay in temporary accommodation they will lose their secure tenancies.

This is an urgent call to our readers to please sign and share this petition from local campaigner and friend of THINK Isis Amlak, demanding that the Grenfell Recovery Scrutiny Committee – which meets tomorrow – remove the recommendation from this report before it goes to the Leadership Team meeting, which is meeting on Wednesday.

https://www.change.org/p/rbkc-residents-stop-rbkc-hands-off-traumatised-residents-tenancies?recruiter=42082904&utm_source=share_petition&utm_medium=copylink&utm_campaign=share_petition&utm_term=share_for_starters_page

We apologise to some who may think our pictures on this serious post may appear to be rather in bad taste, but if anything leaves a bad taste , it is a local authority that lacks a heart in having little to no compassion for people affected by Grenfell, the brains to communicate with residents effectively and the courage to face up to the consequences of their actions.

HEART:

Maybe there is “no place like home”, but it is utterly inhumane for RBKC to expect these traumatised residents to either return to a property in very close proximity to Grenfell Tower , where they witnessed things on the 14th of June last year that nobody should ever have to experience within a deadline . Many saw the fire and saw people in Grenfell Tower calling for help, not all of whom survived . (Some of the sights they have seen to us, as traumatised residents around the corner, are far too upsetting for us to describe).Some wish to leave; others wish to come back at some point but are the in a mind to face it now. Yet callous RBKC tried to force them to make such h a decision within such a narrow timeframe .

Neither Maxine Holdsworth, Director of Housing Needs, nor Kim Taylor-Smith, Deputy Leader of RBKC and Cabinet Member for housing, are in a position to fully comprehend what these residents are going though, and so neither are most of the Leadership Team (Cabinet) who are likely to approve this recommendation.

It is also utterly heartless to expect these residents to give up secure tenancies that many had waited years for – only to now for this council to further add to their trauma and stress

BRAIN:

Yes, RBKC did go spending council reserves on properties, but they completely failed to assess the needs of each and every household first – hence many offers of accommodation not being taken as unsuitable for some residents’ needs (for example, disabled residents being offered places that are difficult to access).

And RBKC also gave £40million to Notting Hill Housing to help rehouse residents in the full knowledge that legally many of their secure tenancies would not be renewed. They did not bother to consult residents; they just threw money at a housing association in blind faith.

Our local authority also severely failed residents with regards to just basic communication (and has done so on a regular basis since the disaster) only just getting in touch with residents affected by this to notify them of this policy decision last Tuesday – beyond unacceptable.

So much for their extra money spent on communications if they cannot even arrange to meet with and fully discuss their proposals for residents within reasonable notice.

And of course, poor communications with helping traumatised residents who are struggling to cope around here has been a consistent and outstanding failure of theirs since the disaster. See our “Dumb and Dumber” post here :

https://thisisnorthkensington.wordpress.com/2018/07/15/dumb-and-dumber/

It appears that some at RBKC either do not have a clue as to what they are doing and others appear to think that by trying to hide away from some or to try and pull the wool over residents’ eyes, that this will somehow remedy the situation – it more than certainly won’t.

COURAGE:

THINKers have attended many of the Housing and Property Scrutiny Committee meetings and also the Tenants Consultative Committee meetings for some time now and we know that it has been admitted by RBKC that there are a considerable number of empty properties that have been left in a state of disrepair for ages – and this is still the case now.

The TMO and what is happening with the dismantling of it is a long and sometimes legally complicated process. But there is an urgent need for these homes to be repaired and to be put back in use as soon as possible.

The Rotten Borough did not have the courage to admit that it was not equipped to deal with both Grenfell and the housing situation and should have gone to the Government and asked to be put into special measures. Instead the RBKC Tories decided to posture and carry on and go ahead with “business as usual” try to act like a “normal” local authority in an unprecedented situation of a disaster.

They would like to draw a line under this and would rather most people forget that it was their behaviour towards residents of Grenfell Tower as well as the dangerous refurbishment of the building which for the most part caused the fire in which at least 72 people died – yet they do not seem to care that their policies and recommendations are further ruining lives.

The council’s strategy appears to be to sweep Grenfell and all affected under the carpet and then to be more focused on offering occasional help to people (in wards which voted for them) and putting on a PR show for the media (despite the fact that there is an inquiry going on which eventually will be examining policies and strategies of policy orchestrated by them and the consequences ).

This council not only lacks, a heart, a brain and the courage to deal with this situation in a competent, calm and compassionate way; the Rotten Borough of Kensington and Chelsea has no shame.

 Matthew Palmer’s offensive behaviour lands him in trouble

Pictured  above  is RBKC Conservative Cllr Matthew Palmer. Cllr Palmer has made several appearances on this blog before – here are just a few of them:

https://thisisnorthkensington.wordpress.com/2017/07/24/a-caring-community-under-a-callous-council/

https://thisisnorthkensington.wordpress.com/2017/08/29/chicken-run-matthew-palmer-gets-in-a-flap-again/

And at the Housing and Property Scrutiny Committee which he is now Deputy Chair of :

https://thisisnorthkensington.wordpress.com/2018/03/14/news-from-the-rbkc-housing-and-property-scrutiny-committee/

He also has been going around at times taking pictures of people without their consent, including bizarrely and distastefully sneaking up and taking photos of people at the Grenfell Silent Walk.

He also offended several locals by posting Andrew O’Hagan’s The Tower on social media (a piece which had already upset, offended and misrepresented many in our conmunity) and describing it as ” a better insight as to what happened at Grenfell” .

Fortunately for Matthew Palmer, his council ward (that he did a chicken run to) , is in safe true blue Queen’s Gate – he never has to worry about the electorate voting him out.

But recently residents have been surprised to see that Chicken Run” Palmer has been unusually well behaved (and even was quite civilised to us in one meeting!) – let us explain why: he was under investigation for this:

He was reported to the council after his outbursts at the RBKC full council meeting in March caused offence to a Grenfell survivor. Palmer had shouted out several times “where are the sprinklers” (referring to sprinklers at Grenfell Tower) when Labour were proposing amendments to RBKC’s budget.

Cllr Palmer denied the charge, but some of us were not sitting too far away from him and we can confirm that he did indeed say this.

Yesterday, the Audit and Transparency Committee ruled that “Chicken Run” Palmer violated the councillors’ code of conduct and now has to make a public apology.

We think this is a slap on the wrist and we’re not convinced that Cllr Palmer is either truly sorry or that he will ever learn any lessons from this.