Sunday, 9 July 2017

A Tale of Two Chairs (1)

“Chairman Strelczenie”, not the Parish Clerk, set up the appointment to inspect and copy Parish Council 2016/2017 Financial Papers.

I arrived with my cameras, including a six-foot high, extended tripod with video-cam already mounted on top, and my Chaperone – a four-foot, ten inch high, lady pensioner. 

I greeted the Chair and Clerk.  They know I arrive at every Parish Council event involving the public with my video-cam and cameras highly visible and they watch me setting up my paraphernalia.  Strelczenie knows he appears on YouTube if he flagrantly flouts Council rules. (More later)

During my inspection, the Clerk and Chair came within one metre of my highly visible tripod and video-cam.  Neither expressed any concerns.   

The Clerk’s service during the inspection was excellent.  We carried out the inspection politely, with the Chair throwing in bad-tempered comments.  Did he have something to hide? (More later) 

After Strelczenie interjected yet again with a bad-tempered outburst, he must have remembered the video-cam from which I have taken these video stills and verified the sounds and actions throughout.  He came rushing across the room in a threatening way that caused the Clerk to yell out “JAN!” as one would try to check a dangerous dog’s uncontrolled behaviour and I told him loudly “Do not come near me, at allDo not come near me, at all!

My wife was hugely shocked.

Strelczenie backed off in the face of the Clerk’s warning shout, my warnings and the strategically placed, protective Chair Number 2 I had placed between my wife and the human Chair in case of a red-faced, eye-bulging, threatening outburst.   

The Chair declared “This account ….. (inspection?) is over, it’s over, it’s over.”  I have him on film bullying Councillor Chilvers during the past six months, but this was the first time he bullied a member of the public with his behaviour and “It’s over” declaration.   

Earlier that morning, before the inspection, I had reported my concerns about Strelczenie’s likely behaviour to the Council’s External Auditor.

I received advice NOT to go to the inspection alone.  I thought a small, female pensioner would stop the Chair’s infamous, filmed, bullying outbursts. NOT SO!

This is so-called “Democracy” in the area under the remit of Selby District Council Monitoring Officer and Solicitor Gillian Marshall. (More later).