Exmouth, EDDC and Grenadier – when does a gamekeeper become a poacher?

“Dear East Devon District Council,

[order slightly changed for clarity]

I am writing to request an internal review of East Devon District Council’s handling of my FOI request ‘Was independent advice sought on the governance of Queen’s Drive Exmouth Community Interest Company’.

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on the Internet at this address: https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/w…

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews.

Councillor Paul Millar has made some attempt to answer this FOI via Social Media. He provided more detail to my FOI than provided here, in, as I understand it his new role as a director of Queen’s Drive Exmouth Community Interest Company and a Councillor. However, although he asserted this via social media and also announced that there was another new director, according to Companies House, Cllr Stott and Cllr Williamson are still in place.

Are you able to provide more detail on the £200k that Grenadier made a good business case for according to Councillor Millar? Are you also able to clarify the amount of interest chargeable by Grenadier on the loan and other charges that the company is making to the CIC.

There appears to be some splitting of identity here, that may lead to a conflict of interest. For example when is Grenadier acting as a commercial business and when is it acting as the majority shareholder of the CIC? Are you able to offer reassurance and evidence that a valuable community asset is being utilised for community benefit rather than commercial gain?”

2 thoughts on “Exmouth, EDDC and Grenadier – when does a gamekeeper become a poacher?

  1. Here is text of EDDC response as of today (19 July):-

    Dear Mrs Russell,

    Thank you for your request for an internal review.

    You are generally asking for explanation and clarification on aspects of this project which do not fall within the scope of FOI and nor do they pertain to the answers that were given in respect of your request for information and to which the internal review should relate. In terms of seeking answer to the new queries you have raised you would be better placed to speak to Richard Cohen, Deputy Chief Executive Development, Regeneration and Partnership who would be happy to discuss these queries further with you. Richard‘s email is [email address].

    Notwithstanding this suggestion, should you wish your latest
    correspondence to be progressed as an FOI then we will need to treat it as a new request as the detail sought goes beyond the scope of your original request. If you do wish this to proceed as an FOI then I would be grateful if you could confirm accordingly but in so doing I would also ask you to consider re-framing the questions to focus on seeking information we hold rather than seeking explanation or clarification.

    With regards to your request for an internal review, you have not
    specified what, in relation to the FOI response you received from us, has not been satisfactorily answered. Please clarify what aspects of our response you are not satisfied with and we will progress your request for an internal review.

    I hope this information is helpful but if you would like to discuss this further please contact our Monitoring Officer, Mr Henry Gordon Lennox ([email address]) who will endeavour to help you.

    You may also approach the Information Commissioner for advice at
    [1]www.ico.org.uk

    Yours sincerely,

    Information and Complaints Officer

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