The Croydon Communities [sic] Consortium, which received a £5,000 grant from the then Tory-run Croydon Council to stage “apolitical” meetings, has appointed the leader of a local branch of UKIP as its new deputy chairman.
CCC held a very poorly attended annual meeting at the Town Hall last week. CCC’s chairwoman, Elizabeth Ash, refused to answer questions about the organisation’s lack of action over the conduct of her former deputy, Clive Locke.
It has been suggested that CCC spent around £500 of its council grant on publicising its annual meeting, which was attended by fewer than 40 residents.
All the positions on the committee were proposed by Ash, as CCC chair, and were elected unopposed.
It took Ash, a Sanderstead housewife, four days to confirm the appointment of the CCC’s 2014-2015 committee in a post on their website.
For some reason the news of the CCC’s “election” of Peter Staveley, who is also the chairman of UKIP Croydon Central and South, is buried below older news on the talking shop’s website. Perhaps Ash doesn’t want anyone – especially the funding body, the council – to notice?
Roger Clark, the partner of Ash’s close friend, Janet Stollery, continues as CCC treasurer. Coulsdon resident Stollery also remains on the committee, which saw the election of Mark Johnson, who in May stood as a candidate for the Conservative party in Waddon ward in the local election. So that’s at least one “election” in which Johnson has been successful in 2014.
The CCC treasurer’s task will surely be to spend as little of the £4,000 or so of council grant which remains. While it seems unlikely that Croydon Council will demand a refund of the public money – as well as being run by people who think nothing of putting racist material out on the internet, CCC also failed to deliver the 20 public meetings in the year which its grant conditions required – any additional funds from the council may be a long time coming while Ash and her cohorts remain in post.
Ash has refused to apologise for the Islamaphobic tweets of her now former colleague, who took two months after issuing the racist messages to stand down from CCC.
“How can you continue to claim to be non-political and say it is a group for all communities?” Bushra Ahmed, a West Croydon resident, has asked CCC on its website. Neither Ash nor any other CCC officers have provided an answer, preferring instead to distract with repeated claims of “harassment”, as if they are in some way the victims.
Staveley is UKIP’s parliamentary candidate in Croydon Central at the General Election in May. “Many communities will not attend a meeting with a UKIP vice-chair who will be standing for UKIP at the next elections,” Ahmed said.
CCC may not be organising many meetings in Shirley any time soon, either.
This morning, Ash was re-united with Clive Locke, as they both attended a small claims court hearing, after CCC failed to pay a local community hall in Shirley a hire fee of less than £90.
The judge ruled that, in the absence of a written contract, CCC would have to pay just £30 for the hire, while Marzia Nicodemi, of Shirley Community Centre, would need to meet the £50 court costs. Nicodemi had been CCC’s secretary for less than one month last year, resigning when she said she could not work with Ash.
- ‘I was singled out and heckled. I was the only black man there’
- UKIP figures behind council-funded ‘apolitical’ talking shop
- UKIP’s McKenzie takes revenge against local whistleblower
Coming to Croydon
- Ghost Stories for Christmas, Spread Eagle Theatre, Dec 3
- David Lean Cinema, The Riot Club, Dec 4
- St Andrew’s churchyard gardening session, 10am, Dec 6
- Fog Horn Funnies, Spread Eagle Theatre, Dec 6
- Croydon Philharmonic Handel’s Messiah, Fairfield Halls, Dec 6
- Coulsdon Yulefest, Dec 6-7
- Heathfield House Christmas charity bazaar, Dec 7
- Oval Tavern Folk Club, Dec 7
- David Lean Cinema, ’71, Dec 11
- Mayor of Croydon’s charity Christmas dinner, Dec 12
- South Croydon business breakfast, Dec 13
- Concert of Christmas music, St Luke’s, Woodside, Dec 13
- Opera Soiree at Whitgift School, Dec 14
- Friends of the Earth Green Beanfeast, Dec 15 (book by Dec 1)
- Croydon Philharmonic Christmas concert, St Matthew’s, Dec 16
- Spread Eagle’s Christmas Improv show, Dec 17
- David Lean Cinema, Northern Soul, Dec 18
- David Lean Cinema, Hitchcock’s To Catch A Thief, Dec 29
- David Lean Cinema, The Beat Beneath My Feet, Dec 30
- Norwood Society talk: Penge, the making of a suburb, Jan 15
- South Croydon business breakfast, Jan 24
- Norwood Society talk: Crystal Palace and Dulwich, Feb 19
- Norwood Society talk: Charlies Dickens in Norwood, Mar 19
- Norwood Society: Balloons and airships at Crystal Palace, Apr 16
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