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Campaigners question Foxdenton ‘big secret’

Date published: 23 June 2014

OLDHAM Council has been accused by campaigners of withholding vital information regarding the controversial Foxdenton development.

The council has twice refused to release documents about the £100 million housing and business park development despite rulings that information should be disclosed.

Opponents Foxdenton and District Protection Group first made the Freedom of Information request asking to view development documents in February 2013.

The request was refused by the council but approved by the Information Commissioner, who ordered the release of the papers.

Oldham Council again refused and the case was taken to a tribunal which earlier this month dismissed the council’s case as being without merit.

But the information has still to be released - leaving local residents concerned about what the documents might reveal.

A spokesman for the protection group said: “It is disappointing that our elected representatives are still delaying this process despite lawful requests, thus demonstrating an unacceptable lack of honesty and transparency.”

A council spokesman declined to make a statement and said the council has 28 days to appeal the decision.

The site, to be called Broadway Green, will contain up to 500 homes and new warehouses under plans submitted by developers Foxdenton LLP, a joint venture between Seddon Construction and Grasscroft Property.

Comments

I find it incredible that this information is still to be released. Oldham Council is defying democracy and so are the local ward councillors who have remained silent throughout. What is there to hide? Do the ward councillors know more than they are letting on? Start being transparent and honest and release the information as ordered.

Why if they have been told to disclose would they want to appeal the decision? Sounds very suspicious to me.

Same old Labour information is on a need to know basis and this Foxdenton group must be on the don't need to know group

How much taxpayer's money has been wasted by the council keeping these public documents under lock and key?
Surely they must realise how bad this looks, makes you wonder what they are trying to hide.

"As a co-operative council Oldham campaigns on the issues that matter to local residents."


So publish the information and show the public what's going on!

No secrets!

Did they ever release the amount they paid for the Roxy only to knock it down?

The purpose of this press release is to present Oldham Council as being evasive and dishonest. However, why not clarify what the withheld information is? Why does the Action Group not tell us what the unanswered questions are? We could then come to a conclusion as to how evasive OMBC is being. It may be that the Action Group's 'big secret' is that there is no 'big secret'. Why should anybody be acting against the interests of Chadderton, or the borough as a whole? It doesn't make sense.

Under FOI you don't have to release some confidential information such as specific financial info. Grossly unfair to criticise ward councillors who will be following guidance from the FOI experts at the council

Don't be ridiculous Bramble, the council had the opportunity to object about financial information, and twice they were overruled. Your argument is spurious at best and a very poor attempt to defend a secretive Labour controlled Council that has little respect for its electorate.

@OldMancunian - no idea if it is anything to do with financial information. I was merely pointing out that some things do not have to be disclosed under FOI rules which is probably what the argument is about. I was also saying that it is unfair to have a go at the Councillors who will be following advice. The Council has a FOI team so they can only follow their lead. Don't let that stop you twisting it so you can have a pop at the council though

Well, dam, the 'unanswered questions' are readily available to anyone who bothered attending the meetings, accessing the FDPG Facebook page, or reading their newsletter. And you may be right - there may be no Big Secret, but if not why would the Council go to the lengths they have not to release the documents?

 

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