Way back in January of this year, we wrote this post about Thurrock Council screwing up infrastructure projects: Thurrock Council and delayed infrastructure projects – there’s a pattern emerging and it ain’t good! Well, according to Thurrock Nub News, it looks as though Thurrock Council realised they didn’t have the capacity to fully run infrastructure projects off their own backs and called in consultants to help dig themselves out of a hole: More than half a million spent on consultants for botched Stanford rail station project – And they’ve got £150,000 for the A13 widening!
The contract with the consultants, Mace started in October 2019 and was initially supposed to run for six months. Obviously, the lockdown knocked the work on the Stanford-le-Hope rail station project right off schedule and the date for the completion of the work is now October 2021. It looks as though Thurrock Council are trying to outdo Crossrail in how long the completion of an infrastructure project can be delayed for!
Recently there was a meeting of the council’s Transport Overview Scrutiny Committee. Both the rail station project and the widening of the A13 were subjected to some interrogation. What really sticks in our throats is that no mention of bringing in Mace to sort the mess out was made at this meeting. Because we live close to where both of these projects are going on, we’ve been following developments quite closely and reading the Thurrock Nub News report above was the first we’d heard about consultants being brought in!
If a council is chucking half a million quid at consultants to sort out the mess they’ve made, the least they could do is be open and honest with their residents about why they’re having to do this and offer a full apology at the same time. In an ideal world that is… We don’t live in an ideal world. We live in one where local councils have forgotten they’re supposed to be the servants of their residents and instead, arrogantly treat us like shite. There’s only so much lack of accountability and transparency alongside sheer arrogance that people are going to tolerate from the council before something gives…