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Tuesday, 30 August 2016

Update: Southern Health CEO AND Chair Both Go!

Update (19th Sept 2016): We've just heard that the new Chair Tim Smart has gone too. He was only appointed a few months ago! More to follow.


We've just received the below statement from Southern Health NHS Foundation Trust. Our actions on this issue are documented here on this website.

Councillor Andrew Pope said:

"Her resignation was too long in coming. But she should have been removed anyway. I gave every opportunity for her to be removed, and for expressions of no confidence to be made. 
But the NHS system and the Labour and Tory parties sought to cover up the failings for too long. It shows how the NHS is run is very sick indeed, and that party politics has no place in the NHS. 
Ms Percy's resignation will not change how Southern Health is run. Much more fundamantal changes are needed. And hearing that she is still hanging around does not bode well for those changes to be made."

Campaigner Denise Wyatt said:

"This smacks of a backroom stitch-up that is not in the interests of patients.
It is shocking that Ms Percy survived for so long. The NHS is not being governed in the interests of patients. It is being governed in the interest of paid civil servants and quangocrats. Massive change is needed, and now. "


Statements from Katrina Percy and Tim Smart  

Dear Member,

Please be advised that Katrina Percy has decided to step down from her position as Chief Executive Officer of Southern Health NHS Foundation Trust. The following statements have today been issued to the media:

Katrina Percy said;

“On 30 June Tim Smart announced the outcome of his review into Southern Health. I was pleased to have his endorsement and support to carry on in my role as Chief Executive and I have been humbled by the overwhelming support from staff and other colleagues.

Since then I have reflected on the effect the ongoing personal media attention has had on staff and patients and have come to the conclusion that this has made my role untenable. I have therefore come to the difficult decision to step down from my role as Chief Executive after nine years. I am delighted to be taking on an alternative role, providing strategic advice to local GP leaders as they work with others to transform the way in which health services are delivered across Hampshire, and I feel that now is the right time to take on that new challenge.
I know, and understand, that many will say I should have stepped down sooner given the very public concerns which have been raised in the past months. I stayed on as I firmly believed it was my responsibility to oversee the necessary improvements and to continue the ground breaking work we have begun with GPs to transform care for our patients.

I would like to thank all of our staff for their unstinting daily support and dedication to delivering the best possible care for all those we look after. I wish everyone at the Trust, and everyone who has supported it, especially over the past year, all the best.”

Tim Smart said;

“Katrina Percy has informed me of her decision to step down from her position as Chief Executive of Southern Health NHS Foundation Trust.

Katrina has come to the conclusion that, due to the significant focus on her as an individual, it is in the best interests of the Trust, patients and staff for her to step down. I have agreed, on the basis that her position has become untenable because of ongoing personal media attention. Katrina has taken up the offer to work local GP leaders providing strategic advice on the transformation of local health services. There is vital work that needs to be done for which she is ideally suited.

Katrina has shown great resilience, devoting herself to the patients and staff of Southern Health since it was created in 2011. In addition, the recently completed independent board capability review found Katrina to be well suited to lead the Trust forward.

Katrina has ensured that Southern Health is now working more closely with other health and care organisations in the region to provide more joined up care, so more people receive support at the right time and place. Katrina leaves the Trust financially sound and well-positioned to create a new form of multispecialty community provider in Hampshire and the Isle of Wight. I wish Katrina every success in her future endeavours, and thank her for her years of service.

I am an advocate of clinicians leading NHS organisations, so I am delighted that Julie Dawes, who joined the Trust in May this year as Director of Nursing and Quality, will be stepping up in the interim as Chief Executive Officer. She will be supported as and when required by Dr Matthew Patrick, Chief Executive Officer, South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust, and Jon Allen, Non-Executive Director and former Director of Nursing at Oxford Health. It is important that patients and our staff have confidence that Southern Health’s future is in safe hands.”

Southern Health NHS Foundation Trust Membership Office|, Tatchbury Mount, Calmore, Hampshire, SO40 2RZ | 023 8087 4253 |

Sunday, 28 August 2016

Brexit Must Halt Mass Immigration

During the EU Referendum campaign, we campaigned for Brexit.

We did this because we listened to the views of people across Hampshire.

They told us they wanted to vote for Brexit.

And they told us why:


"too many immigrants"

"immigration is too much"

"we don't mind people coming here, but it is too many".

And they voted to Leave in their droves.

They turned up to vote, unlike in most local council elections where turnout is under half what it was in the EU Referendum.

They saw the effect of mass immigration on their daily lives.

For example, Southampton's schools have been impacted by an increased birth rate brought in largely due to mass immigration.

Southampton City Council had to expand the number of school places in 2012. I was at the Scrutiny meeting where councillors were asking questions about it. I particularly wanted to know whether there was any truth to the claim that immigration was putting pressure on the schools.

And the evidence that was provided by Council officers was clear.

Roll forward to 2016, and I asked Council officers for an update.

The pressure had not been alleviated and the percentage of school places taken by immigrants had gone up while school places taken by British nationals had gone down.

This should be no surprise - successive governments, whether Labour, Tory or Coalition, had failed to control mass immigration.

This is just one example - public services across local government and national government have been put under strain.

Brexit must halt mass immigration and the Government must control immigration to sustainable numbers.

That is what people voted for on 23rd June.

Now it is the Government's job to deliver.

Best wishes,
Councillor Andrew Pope

Tuesday, 2 August 2016

Latest: Yes, Labour HAS Betrayed Redbridge

The Field at the corner of Test Lane / Gover Road
The Labour Council has betrayed Redbridge

Towards the end of last week, we blogged that the Labour Council was about to finalise the deal for the Test Lane / Gover Road development.

We had asked to be updated by Council officers as soon as the planning permission was finalised. That didn't happen when it should have.

However, we have now confirmed that sadly the planning permission has been issued. It can be viewed here.

Residents we've heard from since this decision are rightly outraged and disgusted.

Local campaigner Denise Wyatt said:

"At last week's public meeting, residents raised so many concerns that have still not been addressed. 
Last week's public meeting at the Ship Inn, Old Redbridge

It is a disgrace that the Labour Council has ignored residents concerns, and has pressed on regardless."

Independent Councillor Andrew Pope said:

"Residents should never forget the answer to these three questions. 
Question 1. Who owns the Gover Road/Test Lane Field land?  

Question 2. Who gave planning permission to build 24-hour warehousing? 

Question 3. Who is selling the land to an offshore company? 

Answer: The Labour-controlled Southampton City Council!"

Following last week's public meeting and queries from Redbridge residents, Councillor Pope sent the following e-mail to Councillor Jacqui Rayment, Cabinet Member for Environment and Transport and Deputy Leader of the Council.

Cllr Rayment was the only Labour councillor to attend (the two Redbridge Labour councillors McEwing and Whitbread and the Labour Leader Simon Letts were all not there although they were invited by the Redbridge Residents Association):

"Councillor Rayment,

At last night's public meeting, you stated to the public and media present that it was too late for this development to be stopped.

Please forward the advice you relied upon, from which officer or councillor it came, and when this advice was provided."
 to which Councillor Rayment's reply was simply:

Cllr Jacqui Rayment
Deputy Leader
Cabinet Member Environment & Transport"

This suggests that Cllr Rayment misled around 130 members of the public and the media present.

If she did mislead the public, this would not be the first time. In 2013, an Independent Investigation stated:

"In respect of Councillor Jacqui Rayment, the investigator found that she failed to comply with The Nolan Principles of Public Life relating to Openness and Honesty, and the guidance as to mutual respect and courtesy between members and Officers set out in the Council’s Member / Officer Protocol. "

As Deputy Leader, Cllr Rayment did not resign then. But Former Leader Richard Williams did, following similar criticism.

At the public meeting, as reported by the Daily Echo, Councillor Pope stopped short of calling for Cllr Rayment to resign.

But now Cllr Pope has been forced to Cllr Rayment asking her to resign for misleading the public, or for the Leader Councillor Simon Letts to sack her.

Denise and Andrew say:
"We fight for you. 
We are the only effective opposition in Millbrook, Redbridge and Maybush. 
Labour, the Tories, the Lib Dems and UKIP have been absent in campaigning against Test Lane. And residents will never forget that it is a Labour Council that is doing this.
We stand up for you. 
We campaign on the issues that matter to local people. 
We put people before party politics. 
We will continue to fight for you. 
That is why we ask residents to join with us Independents in holding the Council to account."

Monday, 1 August 2016

Thank You! Please Contact Us!

We've just had the second-most popular month on this blog - ever!

It seems that people are very interested in the issues that affect them locally - MUCH more than what is going on in the failed party politics in Westminster.

Andrew and Denise would like to thank all of our regular, and all of our new readers.

If you have an idea, or any other feedback, please Contact Us at the details on the left of the website.

That is:

By email:

By phone: 07580715687

or on Twitter: @CllrPope @DeniseWyatt48

or on Facebook: @CllrPope or Councillor Andrew Pope

All the best,
Andrew and Denise