Top page for 'Despots in Local Government':

examples of how minor local officials nowadays act as licensed thugs.

(draft section, in preparation 2012! Some existing pages of SeeRed are being altered to become a part of this new section)

Child protection: taking children from their parents to meet local authority adoption targets. Only in late 2008 were there moves to reform the ultra secretive family courts that used to side with local authorities without even listening to the evidence. There are many cases of social workers acting in a vindictive manner towards people that they have 'taken a dislike to'.

I would never previously have believed that so called 'public servants' could behave in this manner in England in 2009. But having been involved directly in several cases where local government officials have acted as though they were wholly above all laws and norms of society, I could now believe almost anything about them. Of greatest concern is perhaps that 'targets' to be met within local councils have added some urgency to the aspirations of their more dim-witted employees - people who would destroy families and risk the suicide of vulnerable residents primarily so they could advance their own careers. The police also have much to answer for - they seem gleefully to aid and abet local government officials. It is probably easier for them to do this than deal with real criminals.

More will be added here later - whether the Chief Executives of the various councils like it or not.

One of many cases reported in 2009 is reproduced here - others will be added before this section is fully developed.

A recent (March 2012) example of where possibly false expert witness statements have been used against families is here. The MP John Hemming is to be congratulated for his devotion to exposing the injustices of the family court system. Similarly, the Telegraph journalist Christopher Booker deserves recognition.

Waste collection: picking on a few hapless house owners rather than addressing the cult of consumerism.

Excessive waste is generated because there are too many shops selling too many 'consumer' products. If councils really wanted to address the problem of excess consumer waste they could start by limiting the manufacture and sale of unnecessary products - rather than terrorising a few incompetent or disadvantaged householders and perpetuating the myth that 'recycling' is a route to environmentalism. Of course, so many councillors are shopkeepers (or friends thereof) that this will never happen!

Recycling: how local councils are helping to perpetuate a myth

Misuse of Section 215 of the Town and Country Planning Act: examples of how malevolent councillors and officials seek to impose narrow minded ideas of gardening on house owners who choose a 'natural' gardening style.

My involvement in this issue began in Sidmouth in 1998 when a gaggle of Britain in Bloom officials and local councillors tried to order the destruction of my untidy wildlife garden. In essence, Sidmouth Town Council acting with their 'Britain in Bloom' friends and colleagues, tried to dictate which plants I could grow in my own garden and to which heights. This material, together with the 'environmental' arguments for wild gardening as advanced by the RSPB and others, has been retained in one of the original sections of SeeRed.

Destruction of wild gardens ordered by local councils under s.215 of the T&CP Act

John Prescott gets tough with untidy gardens (pdf 2 minutes download)

John Prescott permits large scale environmental vandalism

John Prescott's 'new suburbia' - what an environmental mess!

Chester City Council 2008/9 - an example of legalised thuggery utilising Section 215 of the Planning Acts -  a man is threatened with a 1000 fine and/or prison for having a small amount of moss on his driveway!

Chester City Council (now Cheshire West and Chester Council) originally tried to force a householder cut down most of his 'natural' rear garden but when this failed, they tried 'throwing the book at him' in respect of his tiny front garden. This is one of the first well documented cases of local council thuggery utilising section 215 of the Town and Country Planning Act.

Many other cases have occurred - but house or site owners have complied with council orders rather than risk a severe fine and/or imprisonment. At a minimum, they would have had to pay 150 court fees in addition to their own legal fees - just for the privilege of arguing that they were innocent of any crime against the State!

Of course in the case reported here and that involved Chester City Council, the move to a new council (no doubt with an expensive new logo) was accompanied with the usual vanity, 're-branding' and false promises of a better service to residents. This was all a part of the 'spin' and gloss that nowadays plays such a large part in local government.

"Cheshire West and Chester Council will bring a fresh and energetic approach to providing top quality services for its many customers and communities." In reality, nothing probably changed except for salary increases for senior staff.

Early email correspondence - June to August 2008

Formal notice issued under S.215. September 2008

Later email correspondence - September to December 2008

Involvement of officers of Chester Magistrates' Court

June 2009: after further involvement of the SeeRed website and the Chief Executive of the new Unitary Council, the case was dropped. More details later about LESLIE SMITH the senior planning enforcement officer.

The RSPB - one of Britain's best known charities - applauds the ideals of 'wild gardening', and including areas of long grass. Meanwhile councillors and local officials continue to order its destruction, in the interests of 'neatness' and maintaining the regimented order of sterile 'new estate' neighbourhoods. Further links to the RSPB material and examples of their endorsement of long grass in gardens are elsewhere in SeeRed.

Update 2010 - a widely publicised case involving Mole Valley District Council and retired engineer Richard Wallace.

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