any day today rss X

News and Comment January 2012

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4 January (Part 3) - Bloggers in the News Shopper

News Shopper HeadlineIt was my intention to say nothing about Bonkers’ appearance in today’s News Shopper but having read the comments on their website I feel obliged to fill in a few details

The News Shopper reporter asked me last Thursday if I had any views on the council’s planning application for the Woolwich Building. I said I hadn’t seen it so I couldn’t help; I supposed that he was having difficulty getting hold of the usual suspects during the holiday period. Afterwards I felt that I had let the reporter down and sent an email of my recollections of the council meeting that approved the building swap. You can read the email here.

Next day the reporter asked if he could include my comments and I agreed. I like the idea of the blog being mentioned in the paper, not so sure about myself but if it serves the cause…

Probably the Shopper feature doesn’t make it clear enough that my report was based on facts taken from the council meeting, it was not necessarily my opinion. The Woolwich building is well sited but it may be more a convenient bodge than an ideal Town Hall. Overall I have no real complaints about the Shopper’s report. It has a snappy headline, not absolutely accurate but it helps spread the word about the blog, and in turn about Bexley council. Few newspaper reports are perfect. I know how long it takes to try to ensure total accuracy and clarity on Bonkers and fully understand the pressure there must be in producing a whole newspaper with minimum staffing levels.

Generally my aim is to report facts, provide links to the documentation and let you make up your own mind on whether or not Bexley council is honest and competent. I’m sure I slip off that pedestal on occasions and lapse into offering an opinion; in fact I’m sure I did when the ‘Tesco swap’ was agreed, I think I said “I was persuaded the best compromise was achieved this evening”. Not a perfect solution, but perhaps a reasonable compromise in the circumstances.

On Page 3 the Shopper accurately reports Olly Cromwell’s situation, the first real opportunity it has had to do so given the almost continuous holiday since he last appeared in court.


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