Having seen Inside Croydon’s report last night about the many interesting interests of Dudley and Margaret Mead, Croydon Council’s very own Terry and June, loyal reader John Gass got in touch.
Our report was about the various charities, businesses and committees which the Meads are involved with, but which they had forgotten to declare on Croydon Council’s register of interests. Or which they had deliberately left off their declarations.
According to Gass, Margaret Mead, the £43,339-a-year Croydon cabinet member for adult services and health has been forgetful on other matters, too, such as getting around to writing to local residents on questions involving her council responsibilities.
“If, by any chance,” Gass wrote, “Margaret Mead agrees to speak with you regarding these issues, can you please remind her that she still hasn’t provided an answer to my question, which she promised she’d give by mid-December 2012?”
Gass had asked a question of the Croydon cabinet member for health at a mental health meeting held last November. But Margaret Mead didn’t know the answer then, and invited him to write to her.
Gass shared with us his correspondence with Mead.
From: John Gass
Sent: 16 December 2012 11:20
To: Mead, Margaret
Subject: Answer to question from CVA
When I asked you a question at the Mental Health Forum meeting at the CVA on the 28th of November, you were unable to give me an immediate answer but said you’d respond within a week. I said that I wasn’t trying to put you under undue pressure, so we agreed a timescale of two weeks. That time has now elapsed, so I’m writing to remind you that this action is still outstanding.
My question was: “Do you care that, of the boroughs which use SLaM [South London and Maudsley] to provide adult mental health services, Croydon pays the lowest amount per capita? For the year 2010-2011, expenditure per capita was… Lambeth £299, Lewisham £271, Southwark £249… Croydon £161.”
I look forward to receiving your reply,
This is the response that Gass received on December 18 from the Heathfield councillor:
Dear Mr Gass
I apologise for the delay in coming back to you as promised. I did email for clarification of the figures you quoted but unfortunately my computer went down and I had to resend the information.
However, I have asked for the information as soon as possible.
I am so sorry I have not been able to keep to the timetable I expected and thank you for your patience
A sort of digital age version of “the dog ate my homework”?
Well, if Gass had then received any sort of answer, as now had twice been promised, maybe we could assume that Margaret Mead’s difficulty with her email was genuine.
Patiently, Gass waited again for an answer. By early February, nothing had been received. Maybe Margaret Mead was too busy with all her committees, Whitgift Foundation meetings and charities?
So he wrote to the Croydon Council cabinet member again. This was sent on February 5:
I am very disappointed and dismayed at the lack of any meaningful reply to a question which you said you would respond to way before Christmas. Can you please let me know why you seem unable to answer what is a fairly simple and basic enquiry?
Gass says, “This email has never been answered or even acknowledged.”
Maybe the £43,000 a year councillor just forgot, like she and her husband forgot to fill in all their interests on the members’ register?
If you would like to contact Councillor Margaret Mead and not get a reply, her contact details are:
Margaret Mead (Cllr)
Cabinet Member for Health & Adult Social Care
London Borough of Croydon – Heathfield Ward
Tel: 020 8405 6746
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