Consultation – Barnsley, Doncaster & Rotherham – Orwellian Doublespeak or Alice in Wonderland Approach!

Words in Orwell’s 1984, frequently meant the opposite of common usage and in Alice in wonderland, words would mean what the Queen said they meant at mere whim!

So it is amongst the three Councils that make up the Barnsley, Doncaster and Rotherham Waste Partnership (BDR).

Consultation for them consists of an exhibition ‘road show’ very poorly advertised, held in unsuitable buildings that even locals had difficulty finding from the information supplied.

For example, once the Bolton on Dearne venue was entered through very a dilapidated and possibly dangerous building, the information that residents wanted was simply not available. No one remotely able to answer a question was present and those present proved themselves incapable, upon questioning, of answering the most basic of questions. They were however, assiduous in recording the fact of the presence of anyone attending to support their spurious clams of adequate and widespread public consultation.

Disappointingly none of the politicos were present either, they are our servants, not the other way round! They must speak up for our interests, not theirs, or pay the ultimate price of being dumped by their own electorates at future elections, they have now been put on notice by locals distinctly unimpressed by their attitudes to date.

The consultation response form is simply inadequate, without technical and scientific knowledge, it simply is impossible to make representations that may be listened to.

The sham way that local Councils engage in ‘consultation’ should be exposed as the ‘tick box’ exercise approach is simply unacceptable. We have the right to be informed fully of the facts, we are not! Nor are we listened to!

With a couple of notable and laudable exceptions local Dearne Councillors couldn’t give a fig for their constituents and have repeatedly indicated this to those who have asked them, often in a rather inarticulate and blunt fashion!

Dearne Valley Residents from Wombwell to Mexborough, Wath upon Dearne to Thurnscoe, Bolton to Barnburgh and Swinton to Darfield are being taken for fools by our elected representatives. They are conducting a sham consultation, leading them to rubber stamp a decision already made behind closed doors. A democratic outrage if ever there was one!

This ridiculous charade must change, local people of the Dearne, when asked, are totally opposed to these developments.

The Dearne has suffered too much pollution already!

We don’t want any more!

Tell them!


Extra dates, for Dearne Valley Consultations!

Extra dates for the ‘consultation road show’ announced!

They are as follows:

St Andrews Church Hall, St Andrews Square , Carr Head Lane, Bolton on Dearne, on July 7th,  11am to 8pm.

Silverwood Miners Welfare Resource Centre, Doncaster  Road, Dalton, Rotherham on July 15th,  11.30am to 7.30pm.

Stainforth Community Resource Centre, Church Road, Stainforth,  Doncaster, on July 16th, Doncaster. 12.30pm to 8.30pm.

Fresh Dearne Valley Pollution Alert!

Nearly twenty years ago the Dearne Valley was under threat of a Toxic Waste Incinerator that was slated for the old Dale & Brown Site in Swinton under cover of claimed ‘glass making’.

Swinton residents and many others throughout the Dearne Valley formed a campaign group when we were told by our then local Councillor, Michael Eagleton, now deceased and the then Chair of the Planning Committee, that it was a done deal and ‘nothing could be done’ to stop it.

Swinton Against Toxic Waste was eventually successful after much campaigning that involved large numbers of local people, determined to stop more toxic pollution being generated in this already heavily contaminated area.

Now all the residents of the Dearne Valley are under even greater threat to their environment with the proposed incineration of waste and waste processing on behalf of all three local Councils that make up the waste partnership BDR. (Barnsley, Doncaster & Rotherham)

The site chosen is in fact less than a mile from the Dale & Brown site in Swinton and would affect exactly the same people that campaigned successfully previously, to prevent waste incineration in the already heavily polluted Dearne Valley area.

The political oversight for this project is headed by the Rotherham Cabinet Member for Streetpride one Richard Russell.

Until the recent local elections, he was a Councillor for the Hoober Ward. Deselected by Labour members there, because of a complete lack of faith in him to continue serving the Hoober Ward as a Labour member and I am informed also for his overweening arrogance towards fellow members and the electorate at large.

Undaunted, he hawked himself around the Rotherham Borough until he found a seat with members even more gullible than those of  Hoober Ward, finally achieving success in Rother Vale Ward at the other end of town where his reputation was less well known.

His victory this year was somewhat diminished by the fact that he would have lost the seat to the Rotherham Independent, Rob Foulds, on any other year since 1974, if the General Election had not  ensured the turnout of many voters who had no real idea of the local Labour Candidate foisted upon them by a handful of amazingly stupid local Labour members.

The task of overseeing such a complex project is a job for someone who is capable of understanding the processes involved and the potential for dangers both in the short and the long term. They must be capable of ensuring that all information made public is balanced and reasonable while at the same time  responding to local concerns in ways that inspire confidence.

Is is vital therefore, that this task is performed by one of the ablest of councillors, not by such a frankly piss poor one, such as Richard Russell. The mere fact that Roger Stone*, or anyone else for that matter, has confidence in him to perform this task is breathtakingly arrogant and shows the basic inadequacy of Rotherham Labour Group and it’s overall level of competence to oversee the running of our Town.

A local campaign, Dearne Valley AIM’s (Against Incineration at Manvers) has formed already and are busily engaged in fighting these proposals that will burden all in the local area with further pollution to add to the already unacceptably high levels accrued in the area because of the heavily polluting industries of the past.

If you live anywhere in the Dearne Valley you should join them to stop this catastrophic proposal. They can be contacted by email by using this address,

Please do so without delay, this ill-conceived proposal will not stop itself!

People Power is the only way! Get involved and have your say!


* Roger Stone OBE, Leader of Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council, What? No Knighthood! like Jack Layden? Understandable really, because he is definitely not in the same league as Jack once was.