Thursday, 10 December 2009

Royal Sands Development cliff façade bizarre twist from TDCs chief executive.

Some of you may remember back in November after expressing my concerns about the condition of the newly repaired cliff façade, I received a response from TDC that they weren’t going to inspect it until 2011.

At this point I decided as this was an issue of public safety to take measures into my own hands and inspect it myself and publicise the photographs of this inspection see

The most worrying thing that I found when I inspected the façade was the apparent lack of foundations where the bottom of the façade had been exposed.

Back at the beginning of last year I pointed out the apparent lack of foundations when the first bit of the base of the façade was exposed and was assured that this was only a small part and that it would be repaired.

Since May 2007 I have had an ongoing dialogue with the councils consulting engineers Jacobs Engineering about the cliff façade and other structures in Ramsgate that they manage, so I was somewhat surprised to get a rather bizarre email from them telling me that they were no longer prepared to communicate with, me unless the council gave its permission.

I immediately emailed TDCs chief executive asking him to contact them and give his permission for them to continue to discuss these issues with me.

I was further surprised to receive a point blank refusal from the chief executive of TDC, here is a quote from it: “You can speak to the council about these issues but not our contractors or advisers.” As far as I am aware this dialogue was mutually beneficial and I believe contributed considerably to getting the council to take any action about the state of the cliff façade. The picture above, taken today, shows progress of the repairs to the repaired cliff façade.
it may take a while for them all to appear.


  1. I received a reply today from Health and Safety Executive re companies (like a laundry) who might use private water extraction. The HSE say jurisdiction is with the Environment Agency. HSE seem to imply that the EA should have volunteered this in their response about Sericol and Thor contamination of the aquifer.

    If you have knowledge of direct abstraction privately in Thanet perhaps you could drop a line to Environment Agency to ask for tests on the quality of water being raised to be used by workforce(s) ... or email me the name of the companies and I will write to EA and email you a copy.

    I take it the CE is still Richard Samuel ?

    Not like him to be so foolish. Wonder what he is up to ?

  2. The problem Michael, is that you are exposing incompetence and lack of supervision by TDC of work it has contracted out to contractors.
    To have £1,000,000 of work now being 'un-done' and sorted is magnificent justification for your persistance as a 'shop assistant' in this matter!

    Do not worry about the blustering tone from Richard Samuel. He is sending out clear signals that his officers have 'cocked- up'.

    There is previous for sudden secretive behaviour when TDC has allowed tax-payers money to be mispent or fraudulently claimed for work not done or not done properly. It is more important to cover up errors and incompetence than it is to admit to a problem openly and then sort it out properly.

    One would think that the NAO would be interested in matters like this but you would be wrong. It's too busy giving a 'clean' bill of health to TDC regarding Labour Govt performance target indicators. Fraud, corruption and waste of tax-payer's money is not part of NAO's remit apparently!

    When will TDC grasp the fact that the world has changed and that secretive behaviour, incompetence and cover-up will be exposed to the light?
    Suggest you contact Channel 4, as some one has asked ECR to do, to expose links and connections. Our local press do not have the resources to investigate in detail, like they used to.

  3. Couldnt agree more with Bertie's sentiments inappropriate money spending doesnt seem to be accountable at all! Its a nationwide problem otherwise we wouldnt have the sort of deficit we nationally have!
    Latest bizarre thing we have had is a letter home from school "saying that all people working for KCC have been awarded an extra day off because of kent doing so well in the local authority charts nationally" - it means the kids break up in the summer a day earlier so the teachers can have their extra day's holiday then!? It's laughable really!

  4. Not if your a teacher!

  5. Dum loquimur, fugerit invida
    Aetas: carpe diem, quam minimum credula postero.

    But has and will TDC - roses my a***

  6. Richard I frankly don’t have time to investigate that one as well at the moment, but will see what I can do when I get a chance.

    JH I am not so sure that this is a matter of success, it depends both on the quality of the repair and what they intend to do about the foundations.

    Bertie it is certainly worrying, the money I mean but I really only have time to concentrate on the safety issues, something I consider most important.

    1.14 thought it was rosebuds, correct me if I am wrong.

    To the Virgins, to Make Much of Time

    Gather ye rosebuds while ye may,
    Old Time is still a-flying:
    And this same flower that smiles to-day
    To-morrow will be dying.

    The glorious lamp of heaven, the sun,
    The higher he's a-getting,
    The sooner will his race be run,
    And nearer he's to setting.

    That age is best which is the first,
    When youth and blood are warmer;
    But being spent, the worse, and worst
    Times still succeed the former.

    Then be not coy, but use your time,
    And while ye may, go marry:
    For having lost but once your prime,
    You may for ever tarry.

    9.55 Tu ne quaesieris, scire nefas, quem mihi, quem tibi!

  7. Michael

    I will write again to EA and attach you a copy for your emails re the water issue.

    I wanted to make sure I would not be treading on your toes.

    As you know Thor Chemicals features in my submission to Iraq Inquiry. But the inquiry terms of ref (surprise) are not helpful ?

    I agree with Bertie to some extent. But my experience of Mr Samuel is that he is no fool. His first move (in relation to planning issues 6th Thanet Gun Range etc) when appointed CE was to copy the complaint files (withheld by Cllr Neville Hudson from TDC Standards Cttee ?) to Police having sought my permission to do so.

    He appears to be more knowledgeable of law than the TDC solicitor.

    On the face of it his action towards you appears foolish. I wonder if he is trying to avoid prejudice to some planned action he is playing close to his chest ?

    I notice that a second Kent Chief constable in a row appears about to be plucked from the ranks of Chief constable into a civilian occupation following a sudden choice by a govt minister ?

  8. Michael,

    I respect your diplomatic softly softly approach, but I would now be sorely tempted to forward the details of the cliff-top issue to Private Eye and see if they want to run with it in "Rotten Boroughs".

    Both the H&S isssue over the cliff-top and the business over the money seem to be up their street.

  9. Michael, your 01.14 is a bally Far East link to a porn site; have been plagued by this sort of thing for the past week! You might wish to delete?

  10. Thanks Bertie I missed that one I am busy with a book about the Thanet Pubs and have had to do some field research.

    13.13 if I get time.

    Richard don’t worry about treading on my toes, I would far rather be getting on with the local history than hassling government departments.


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