Conservative leader falls down his own trap

  At the last Full Meeting of Oldham Metropolitan Borough Council, held on 8th September, 2021 the various question time sessions proved a little more controversial than usual, writes Neil Wilby. Following an article published elsewhere on this website last month (read here), reporting calls by Council Leader, Arooj Shah, for more public engagement andContinue reading “Conservative leader falls down his own trap”

Women’s taskforce sets out its equality stall

Inspirational women from across Oldham came together last Friday for the first meeting of a new taskforce headed by Council Leader Arooj Shah. The new group, which includes women from a wide range of backgrounds, representing organisations across the borough, aims to address underlying disadvantages faced by women and promote greater equality. Following their firstContinue reading “Women’s taskforce sets out its equality stall”

Council Leader calls for ‘wider representation of views’

Oldham’s Council Leader has urged residents of the Borough to join in the Public Question Time sessions at Full Council meetings, writes Neil Wilby. Cllr Arooj Shah‘s call came during July’s session at which queries had been raised by four politicians, with no unaffiliated members of the public taking part. Two Conservative Party members, RobertContinue reading “Council Leader calls for ‘wider representation of views’”

Former Council leader joins the fray

In a week of unusually high drama, even by Oldham Council standards, the issue that dominated the news scene, locally, was the Leader’s extraordinary written response to a call by an Independent councillor for an ’emergency recall’ of Full Council. The news of both the misconceived ‘open letter’, posted by Cllr Brian Hobin on hisContinue reading “Former Council leader joins the fray”

Leader sues for peace after latest bizarre attack on Council

In an exclusive broken elsewhere on this website yesterday, news of the Failsworth Independent Party‘s latest attack on its own Council was revealed in full (read here). It resulted, once again, in humiliation for their Council Group Leader, Cllr Brian Hobin, who exposed his own lack of knowledge of the hierarchy and leadership of the paidContinue reading “Leader sues for peace after latest bizarre attack on Council”

Mayor says Oldham CSE review will be published ‘by the end of the year’

In a statement published on the Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) website on Friday 30th July, 2021, the Mayor of Greater Manchester announced that the long-awaited Oldham Strand of the Child Sexual Exploitation Review will be published in November 2021 or, at the latest, by the end of the year. This Review chiefly concerns historicContinue reading “Mayor says Oldham CSE review will be published ‘by the end of the year’”

Disgraced activist claims arrest ‘politically motivated’

At 6.25am on Friday, 23rd July, 2021 six Greater Manchester Police (GMP) officers attended at an address in Mossley, Tameside to arrest a 48 year old male on suspicion of racially aggravated public order and malicious communications offences. A search of the premises was undertaken by way of Section 32 of the Police and CriminalContinue reading “Disgraced activist claims arrest ‘politically motivated’”

The straw that broke the camel’s back?

Several well placed sources have confirmed that Dr Carolyn Wilkins, highly paid chief executive of Oldham Metropolitan District Council, is presently on gardening leave*. The Council’s website records that her present salary is £185,169, compared to the median salary of £24,491. No wrongdoing on the part of Dr Wilkins is expressed, or implied, beyond whatContinue reading “The straw that broke the camel’s back?”

Beginning of the end?

It’s been a long haul. An investigation that started over a year ago may soon be coming to an end, writes Neil Wilby. Allegations that a police force, a local council and a group of MP’s were engaged in a long running wide-scale cover up of grooming and child sex abuse, in an East LancashireContinue reading “Beginning of the end?”

Barking up the wrong tree

In November last year, writes Neil Wilby, an article was published on this website that charted the course of what is now a year long journalistic investigation into alleged serious wrongdoing by police, MPs and local councillors in Oldham, a large Pennine town on the eastern edge of the Greater Manchester region (read in fullContinue reading “Barking up the wrong tree”