Saturday, 22 June 2013

Popularity Contest

There are a few public relations items piling up on the desk, awaiting the arrival of CaRT's new CEO. CaRT would certainly not win a popularity contest with many boaters at this time. Which is in a way an unsurprising carry over from the previous BWB administration. I understand Richard Parry is due to arrive for his first day at ivory towers on the 6th of July. It will be interesting to see how well the new CEO fits in. Will it be more of the same old same old. Or will their be a genuine new ethos. He might not realise it yet, but there is a great deal resting on his shoulders. He will certainly have to address the direction and the boating public's concerns as items high on his agenda.

It will also be interesting to see if the ethos with regard to carrying out meaningful consultation with the punters changes. I'm beginning to think that CaRT are trying for the title 'Most disliked charity in the UK.' With all the recent poor publicity over the usurping of visitor moorings on the River Severn and a number of other knockabout circus issues. In particular the ones where the content of some communications contains very suspect statements. I have to admit that I can't yet see a successful outcome to the long term future for CaRT in the charitable community. I do live in hope that there will be a good outcome. As we come up to the first anniversary of CaRT's inception. I'm not filled with any real sense of occasion. I can't say that the prospects of a change in opinion will come any time soon. 

The honeymoon period in the public's perception is often the first year. After which people will want to see significant changes and improvements. So as the first candle on the cake is lit I wonder what the next year will hold in store. Well if the lock failure on the Wolverhampton 21 is anything to go by. you could not make it up. The lock wall failure couldn't have come at a worse time for the Canal and River Trust. Like scoring a home goal in a premiership championship football match. This week its new Chief Executive Richard Parry agreed to cruise up the locks to see the state of the waterways. He will have a much clearer idea of how parlous things are now.

Maybe we should remind him of some of the finest moments of his predecessor. Like the ill conceived British Waterways pub partnership that went into administration, costing us a very cool £22 million  - money that should have been spent on maintenance.

Remember the installation of totally unnecessary metal bollards at narrow locks, that were not only unnecessary, but proved to be extremely dangerous. So at a cost of over £1,000 per lock to install the metal bollards, a further £750 a lock had to be spent to remove them. Again costing us - money that should have been spent on maintenance.

But this was very small fry to the later schemes of spending millions to purchase marinas that would provide 'money for maintenance' that have proved to be another stinging slap in the face. Again costing us - money that should have been spent on maintenance.

The 'Pièce de résistance' being the writing-off of £33 millions on the Gloucester precinct fiasco. Again costing us - money that should have been spent on maintenance.


No comments:

Post a Comment

Please put your name to your comment. Comments without a name may automatically be treated as spam and might not be included.

If you do not wish your comment to be published say so in your comment. If you have a tip or sensitive information you’d prefer to share anonymously, you may do so. I will delete the comment after reading.