Council Data Loss – Rotherham’s shameful record from Big Brother Watch

Big Brother Watch, yesterday released a damning report into Data losses in local government. Called the Local Authority Data Loss, Read report, pdf here, it is a damning account of laxity when it comes to keeping our personal data safe and secure. The report makes clear just how much Local Authorities have room for improvement.

The situation in Yorkshire is mixed. Rotherham came in third place with 8 incidents in this league table of shame, behind Hull’s 12 and York’s 10. Time for Rotherham MBC to get serious about this.

Yorkshire’s National Daily, the Yorkshire Post reported the story yesterday thus:

Councils accused of lax attitude over confidentiality as data lost, this story was accompanied with a scathing editorial entitled, Council Data Loss Disaster. Can’t find a link yet on YP website, if anyone has found one please let us know.

The London Evening Standard has also covered the story:

Children in care among victims of data breaches by ‘lax’ councils

Minuteman Press – Latest with Rotherham’s embarrassing pantomime poster story!

The embarrassing story of Rotherham Council’s failure to enforce planning laws for a pantomime poster erected on one of it’s own buildings, spreads further!

Council violates own planning laws with giant poster

November 23, 2011 by

A council in Yorkshire has violated its own planning laws by erecting a giant poster in the town centre – without first applying for permission to do so.

Rotherham Council put up a giant poster advertising the town’s Jack and the Beanstalk pantomime on the side of the Arts Centre in the town. However, the council failed to first apply for planning permission to add the poster before it was put up. This puts the council in violation of their own planning rules. The poster is 25 feet by 15 feet in size Read on…..

Read also:

Tales from the Town Hall – adds fuel to the fire – Rotherham Council: What A Pantomime!

Yorkshire Post – Giant mistake as council puts up Jack and Beanstalk poster

Is RMBC breaking planning laws? You bet they are!

Section 106 Agreement – An invitation to extortion? Well what would you call it?

Section 106 agreements, Cllr Mahroof Hussain claims in the most recent edition of the ‘Tiser, “are attached to all sorts of planning applications these days.” You bet they are!

What are Section 106 Agreements? Some research:

“Section 106 (S106) of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 allows a local planning authority (LPA) to enter into a legally-binding agreement or planning obligation with a landowner in association with the granting of planning permission. The obligation is termed a Section 106 Agreement.

These agreements are a way of delivering or addressing matters that are necessary to make a development acceptable in planning terms. They are increasingly used to support the provision of services and infrastructure, such as highways, recreational facilities, education, health and affordable housing.

The scope of such agreements is laid out in the government’s Circular 05/2005. Matters agreed as part of a S106 must be:

  • relevant to planning
  • necessary to make the proposed development acceptable in planning terms
  • directly related to the proposed development
  • fairly and reasonably related in scale and kind to the proposed development
  • reasonable in all other respects.” Source Here.

Wikipedia has this to say on Section 106:

“Section 106 of the Act, in conjunction with DoE Circular 5/05, allows for Local Planning Authorities and persons interested in land to agree contributions, arrangements and restrictions as Planning Agreements or Planning Obligations. Applicants can offer such agreements unilaterally or negotiate and agree them as support for their application to make it accord with local planning requirements, but without some of the rigorous controls of Planning Conditions under s 70(1).

It relates to monies paid by developers to Local Planning Authorities in order to offset the costs of the external effects of development. For example, if a developer were to build 100 new houses, there would be effects on local schools, roads etc., which the Local Authority would have to deal with. In that situation there might be a Section 106 agreement as part of the granting of planning permission. The developer might agree to make a contribution towards the provision of new schools.

Section 106 arrangements are currently being reviewed by the Department for Communities and Local Government. See also: Planning gain#Criticisms of Section 106 Agreements.”

There you have it, Section 106 is a licence to extort money, mostly from developers it should be noted, with little sympathy.

When Rotherham MBC tried to extort nearly £250,000 from our local NHS, to pay for a crack pot scheme, clearly the Council had gone too far, this time!

No one should be in doubt about the sheer effrontery of the Council involved in this latest attempt to get their grubby little hands on some of our money. It is outrageous that Mahroof Hussain had no understanding of the way this looks to his constituents in Boston Castle or Rotherham’s citizens generally! Especially, as it is the worst kept secret in Rotherham that Mahroof would like to succeed Denis MacShane when he is toppled from his perch!

Asking for money with menaces by withholding planning permission, as was the case in RDGH’s planning application, in my book, amounts to extortion! Who came up with this proposal on behalf of the Council? We must be told!

Mahroof could always start by apologising to the readers of Rotherham Politics?

Tales from the Town Hall – adds fuel to the fire – Rotherham Council: What A Pantomime!

The quite wonderful, Tales from the Town Hall, has covered this tale of Council failure to follow it’s own rules:

Rotherham Council: What A Pantomime!
For years Rotherham Council has been putting up a hoarding on the side of its arts centre advertising the town’s pantomime. But, thanks to the savvy of one of the town’s more outspoken citizens, it now appears the council has never had planning permission to erect the advertising hoarding. This from a council that recently took a pensioner to court for advertising on the side of his home details of his son’s business. Read story……

Mahroof breaks the ‘golden rule’ – Stay out of the ‘Tiser at all costs!

For many years now it has been a ‘golden rule’ of the Labour Group that members should stay out of the ‘Tiser at all costs. With good reason. Few would pass muster, if they came under close scrutiny from a journalist!

Mahroof has unwittingly made himself look very foolish indeed. I presume his political calculation was, I am up for re-election next year and this is an opportunity, too good to miss, to appear to be on my constituents side and anyway, there are few votes for me among the visitors to RDGH.

So impatient was Mahroof to chat with Gareth Dennison, that he failed to check with the Council Press Office to see if there were any other issues that might be appearing in the same edition as his own piece was published! A fundamental error! Especially so in someone with parliamentary pretensions! Oh dear!

The Press Office had in fact, been dealing with another but related story, and had issued a statement to Phil Turner of the ‘Tiser. Had he bothered to inquire would have discovered this, but he failed to do this quite inexplicably? This begs the question as to Mahroof’s loyalties, has he gone freelance? Certainly does not appear to be a good team player at the very least?

Readers may wish to read Mahroof Hussain MBE Councillor for Boston Castle Ward. If you have not already read it, Jahangir and Mahroof take to You Tube – When will Roger do likewise? May at least give you some amusement. This letter on the ‘Tiser website says it all and may prove to be just a portent of the row to come?

Yorkshire Post – Giant mistake as council puts up Jack and Beanstalk poster

Giant mistake as council puts up Jack and Beanstalk poster

Published on Saturday 19 November 2011 06:00

BLUNDERING council chiefs have been left red-faced after they put up a giant Christmas panto poster – and broke their own planning rules. Read on…..

Well done, to the Yorkshire Post, for picking up on this. You couldn’t make it up!

South Anston by-election results and congratulations



Many Congratulations Gordon Jarvis on winning the seat in the South Anston Ward.


Congratulations to the people of South Anston for voting in:

An honest, reliable, committed and totally independent candidate.

Number of Votes:
GEE, Anthony            Independent        78 votes
JARVIS, Gordon        Independent       460 votes

A resounding victory.

We are sure Gordon will represent us, the people of South Anston with all his skill and integrity

All Best Wishes & Regards

Monica & Peter Barnes
South Anston