New kids on the block

    This is a version of a post that appeared on Facebook yesterday (15th October), edited for syntax errors and to avoid defamation claims or committal proceedings for contempt, writes Neil Wilby.   The profile behind it describes ‘The Old Hammer‘ (TOH) as ‘a new news outlet for Oldham. Coming soon for the 2022Continue reading “New kids on the block”

“Do not Fear Them. Do Not Fear Any of Them”

On Monday 11th October, 2021, Raja Miah, from Mossley, Tameside will appear, remotely, before leading information rights judge, Stephen Cragg QC, and two lay Panel members at a General Regulatory Chamber, First Tier Tribunal hearing. The disgraced political activist, currently on police bail over suspicions of racially aggravated public order and malicious communications offences, isContinue reading ““Do not Fear Them. Do Not Fear Any of Them””

Disgraced hyper-local party mired in yet more controversy

Scandal-hit Failsworth Independent Party, never far from headlines in the local, regional and national press, face more controversy as two of their more recent bids to silence their opponents and critics appear set not only to fail, but backfire spectacularly. The thrust of much of the press coverage, and several articles elsewhere on this website,Continue reading “Disgraced hyper-local party mired in yet more controversy”

Council parts company with another senior executive

Troubled Oldham Metropolitan Borough Council has announced that Helen Lockwood is set to leave the local authority. This is the first visible effect of the very recent appointment of interim chief executive, Harry Catherall. He took office on 26th August, 2021. Helen is joining Bury Hospice, which this year celebrates its 30th Anniversary, as chiefContinue reading “Council parts company with another senior executive”

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”

Council finally owns up to deceiving local politician

The chief executive has all but gone, but deep rooted problems still persist in the higher echelons of Oldham Metropolitan Borough Council, writes Neil Wilby. Highlighted again this week by an admission that they cheated when responding to a freedom of information request made by a local politician and fierce critic of that same administration.Continue reading “Council finally owns up to deceiving local politician”

Drinking in last chance saloon?

Following the publication on Friday 13th August, 2021 of a widely read, and shared, exclusive, elsewhere on this website (read here), a ‘peace meeting’ was arranged between Cllr Arooj Shah, Leader of Oldham Metropolitan Borough Council and Cllr Brian Hobin, Group Leader of the three-member Failsworth Independent Party. It followed the posting on-line of aContinue reading “Drinking in last chance saloon?”

Council puts record straight over recruitment of interim chief

Following the appointment, subject to Full Council approval, of an interim chief executive, exclusively revealed elsewhere on this website (read here), a disgraced ‘political activist’ from neighbouring Tameside launched, within minutes, a series of his now familiar on-line attacks on the person and the process. These included smears against the person appointed by Oldham MetropolitanContinue reading “Council puts record straight over recruitment of interim chief”

Troubled Council set to appoint interim chief executive

A routine scan through the meetings, agendas and minutes section of the Oldham Metropolitan Borough Council website has fuelled speculation about more changes at the top of its paid officer ranks. The impending departure of the present chief executive, Dr Carloyn Wilkins, was broken exclusively on this website last month (read here). It is understoodContinue reading “Troubled Council set to appoint interim chief executive”