Tuesday, 8 February 2011

Young Guns (Go For It!)

I am often telling my twins that there is a time to be funny and a time to be serious. Alas today's FoI request to Uncle Eric is very serious. I have tired to lighten the mood a little but the implications that his special boyz are interfering with the running of a government department are serious. Civil Servants have to to be able to discharge their duties without political influence. Have the Special Advisors at DCLG grown too powerful?

Dear Chums

Last week I happened to come across Grant Shapps in the gents. There he was looking at himself in the mirror combing his hair and humming a tune. That tune stayed with me all day and it took a while to recall it was actually “I’m Your Man” by Wham!  Great tune Grant, but I thought “‘Wake me up before you go-go” is more suitable given your fatigued state .

That night on the tube home I dug out my Sony Walkman from my bag and stuck in my favourite C90 cassette of Wham! hits. When I got to “Bad Boys” I had a cold shiver down my spine as a vision of Uncle Eric’s special advisors singing and dancing in rubber knickers clouded my mind. 

The reason for this horrendous apparition was due to a careless whisper that I heard concerning the activities of the Giles Kenningham and Nick Sheridan-Westlake. It appears they have been working hard but crossing boundaries and interfering with the sterling work of the civil servants in the department.

The Code of conduct for Special Advisors is very clear about what SpAds can and cannot do (see: http://www.cabinetoffice.gov.uk/sites/default/files/resources/special-advisers-code-of-conduct.pdf)

So can you please supply me with the following information?

1)      Has an instruction be given to DCLG staff that responses to Freedom of Information requests should be checked by SpAds before publication?
2)      Any emails, minutes or notes concerning SpAds involvement with the process, quality assurance or publication of responses to freedom of information requests
3)      Confirmation that SpAds and Minister are fully aware of the Special Advisers’ Code of Conduct.
4)      Policy documents relating to responding to Freedom of Information requests.

This has serious implications and I look forward to your objective response.

I’ve gotta have faith,


  1. Why do you think you're funny? Did some deluded person tell you?

  2. Derek - love your work

    Anonymous - u need to smile more!! lighten up - relax - breath deeply - have some Victoria Sponge!

  3. The word is 'you', not 'u', you illiterate cunt.

  4. Anonymous is a very angry and potty-mouthed person.

  5. Anonymous is annoyed that Derek keeps calling him Nick Sheridan-Westlake rather than just Sheridan Westlake