Posted by: John Brace | 12th July 2016

What did Bernard Halley tell Wirral councillors about a 7,000+ petition against the closure of Girtrell Court?

What did Bernard Halley tell Wirral councillors about a 7,000+ petition against the closure of Girtrell Court?


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Council (Wirral Council) 11th July 2016 Agenda item 4B (Petitions) Petition of over 7,000 requesting Council halt closure of Girtrell Court

Council (Wirral Council) 11th July 2016 Agenda item 4B Petitions Bernard Halley (right) speaks to a petition against the closure of Girtrell Court

Council (Wirral Council) 11th July 2016 Agenda item 4B Petitions Bernard Halley (right) speaks to a petition against the closure of Girtrell Court

As you can hear in the video above, Bernard Halley had five minutes to address Wirral Council’s councillors on the subject of his petition requesting that the closure of Girtrell Court be halted.

“….” refers to parts which are unclear due to his distance from the microphone and background noise. DASS stands for the Department of Adult Social Services.

Benard Halley said, “Thank you Mr. Mayor. I would like to take this opportunity to address the issues in this petition.

The petition that we refer to is on on and it is about the closure of Girtrell Court.

The current statistics which have been very carefully balloted are 4,778 Wirral postcode signatures, 2,211 UK wide signatures and a 101 worldwide signatures, so it’s getting quite a bit of notoriety.

I would say at this stage that I have absolutely no political affiliation whatsoever, so I’m not grinding any of the traditional axes in this room.

In fact, I don’t want to be here. I don’t want, I don’t relish being regarded as a troublemaker, I would much rather support DASS in all their endeavours but this is an issue of principle that has to be followed through.

You are closing a service which whilst not perfect, enjoys the full confidence of parents and carers against their clearly expressed wishes.

Confidence that is held in Girtrell Court is vital when you ask us to entrust our loved ones to a third party.

Your process so far as carers are concerned have been flawed from the start. You decide an end product closure and then work backwards to find a solution that fits.

We find no evidence whatsoever that users called for change. We have objectively polled Girtrell Court users using an open question poll document and their data contradicts the …. . I challenge the Council to make full disclosure of their case to the scrutiny committee for independent evaluation.

Mr Phil Davies has repeatedly used the phrase, “equal or better”. That begs the question who decides what is equal or better? Surely it should be the users of the service?

Well Mr Davies you are a long way from equal to or better at the moment.

You have a potential building and a potential service provider. You do not have a service specification and terms of the contract which is absolutely vital for carers. We want to know that this is not a flash in the pan. There is no comparable staffing ratio data. There is no confirmation that users will have equal to time allocation, there is no information on the range or extent of user activities necessary to equal Girtrell or is this new service going to be just a baby sitting service?

In short you do not have or are far from the complete package which will enable anyone to evaluate equal or better.

Recent correspondence and press releases including emails from your Chief Executive claim that the closure decision has been made in partnership with carers. This is categorically untrue.

None of the carers have agreed to the closure of Girtrell Court.

Carers, including myself have often argued on the comparative virtues of three properties and provider combinations but with the sole motivation of ensuring any alternatives that originated was the best out of the limited choice available.

This was not and is not an agreement or approval for Girtrell Court closure.

The property chosen has some virtues but and this is a big but, the …. is on three floors and even with a lift there are concerns over evacuation capability in the event of a fire.

I am told that one of the principal reasons for closing Maplehome was an identical concern over evacuation capability.

Please do not use this as a Tory versus Labour slanging match which has characterised every debate on Girtrell.

Both propositions have occurred under the remit of DASS, so why is what was unacceptable then suddenly acceptable now?

I come to timescales. We were told at the start that the end of March was unachievable. My position cited the end of September as a possible appropriate date.

Now work on the property is unlikely to be completed by the end of November at best and only then can the Care Quality Commission’s approval be sought. So even with a fair wind, it might be the end of December it seems optimistic.

This ill-managed project has caused worry, distress and concern not only to service users, but to their carers. Many of whom are much older than I, have greater burdens to carry and who do not need Wirral Borough Council subjecting them to 9 months or more of added stress.

We come back to the starting point, you should have and could have used this financial year to plan and a design for a replacement service, while allowing users the confidence that Girtrell will continue seamlessly until an equal to or better than service can be constructed.

Instead, you reverse engineered a flawed solution which does this Council and its officers no credit whatsoever.

The petition has attracted over 7,000 signatures.

If you should ignore this level of public support moreover to do so by muscling your own councillors using a three line whip to stifle those points of view with compassion and conscience is a travesty of democracy for which this Administration should be truly ashamed.

(loud applause and cheers from the public gallery)

The bare minimum for the hard pressed carers should be afforded is consultation on the full package solution as I identified earlier.

If I may read a portion of the petition because it is pertinent, “Our demand is simple, retain the excellent Girtrell Court and its professional caring staff until the Council has researched carer and cared for needs, analysed, researched, costed and fully consulted on the suitability of any replacement offering.”

Solution before dissolution! Thank you for your time.

(loud applause and cheers from the public gallery)”

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  1. 7,0000 or seven million, the Council wants this closed so they can get old people in and charge them money!

    • I think when asked Wirral Council said that their plans (if Girtrell Court were closed) was to sell off the site for extra care housing.

  2. G’day John

    I would luv to see you and “Highbrow” be allowed to audit this whole farce for a week without interference and bullshit.

    Not saying Grant (chocolate teapot) Thornton couldn’t do a good job if it was approached the right way.



    God bless everyone at Lyndale and Girtrell Court.

    • In order to do it properly the way I’d like to I’d need a minimum of three full-time.

      One person to deal with communications/admin with the public body & external auditor.
      One person to be a line manager and to cover for people on holiday/off sick.
      One person to be a financial professional.

      Sadly our internal budget doesn’t cover 3 staff for this sort of thing, just 1.5. So every year certain items have to be dropped due to lack of time.

      • G’day John

        Grant (chocolate teapot) Thornton probably send in two kids and run rings around them.



        If they suspect anything they are probably told it is none of their business.

        Been there done that.

        • The downside to Grant Thornton is that:

          a) they’re private sector so not subject to FOI


          b) they’re limited in terms of staff time and have to naturally concentrate on the high level matters

  3. G’day John

    Back to Wirral “Funny” Bizz knocking off £2,000,000.00, asset stripping and all things Invest (in thyself) wirral.

    Have you received that damning document yet?

    A great read.

    They just draw things out for years via not answering FOI’s and hiding reports and forcing people to take them to court if they dare and then talk shit about it being five years ago so its not important anymore.

    John, it is important a crime is a crime is a crime.

    Loose your belief in that and you would be as low and as morally bankrupt as “The Pretend Friend” “Ankles” and “Phil the Very Very Deluded Dill” “Phil’s Ugly Twin Brother” “The Shyster” “Legweak” “Missus Bilong The Pretend Friend Nurse Rat” et al.

    All supported by 66 egocentric buffoons, I mean 65.



    • I cannot confirm nor deny information I may or may not have received at some point from a source as it would be contrary to journalistic ethics.

      • G’day John


        An ethical person associated with wirral??????????

        Just heard Blakey on the radio, sounded like he was on a bus, saying he was ashamed about the clowncil.

        ha ha ha ha ha ha

        Join the club clowncillor and you and your mates grow some cohones and stand up to the lying cheating scum over wirralgate and wirral “Funny” Bizz.

        Pity you don’t have John “Tarrantino” Brace or “Highbrow’s” ethics.



        God bless all at Lyndale and Girtrell Court.

        • Do you mean Cllr Chris Blakeley?

          His colleague Cllr Lesley Rennie said the same thing on Monday evening about being ashamed to be a councillor there.

          • G’day John

            Are you sure his name is not Blakey he seems like the perfect inspector to his colleague Clowncilloress Reguloid you mention after she gave me the tray bits about feigning disgust at the Wirral “Funny” Bizz crimes.

            And then like 65 others kept her gob shut.



            God John I talk some **** I do hope you don’t read me like Dousgsie Dicko and Joe Blow those clowncil people.

            • Inspector Blakey is a fictional character from the TV Show On the Buses.

              Councillor Chris Blakeley is a real person.

              Your comments make a change to the spam comments, however all comments made are emailed to myself when they are made.

              Anyway your comments are useful for words to add to the profanity filter!

  4. G’day John

    How does Wirral Council get through your profanity filter?

    I bet you don’t get the redacted profanities in your FOI tribunal.

    They will protect “Potty Mouth” at all costs.

    All costs means at the public’s expense.

    They are truly crude, crass and effluence.



    Have you heard anything yet on that issue in the courthouse over Kev and Stella’s Stinking Stagnant Wirral Waters?

    I see tonight the heritage gang are kicking up a stink about Uncle Joe and his university city and liverpool waters.

    • To be honest with you it was hard to hear what anybody said at that First-tier Tribunal (Information Rights) hearing due to the acoustics of Tribunal Room 5!

      A judgement has not been issued yet in case EA/2016/0033 no. So far the Tribunal has got as far as a judgement on case EA/2016/0030 which went to a hearing on the 21st June 2016, which is after the hearing date in the case in which I’m Appellant on the 16th June 2016.

      So a decision in the case I was Appellant should be issued soon in the next week or so.

      However we’ve had no mail here for a while, so that may have something to do with it.

  5. G’day John

    Duggan Hutchinson Dicko (ha ha ha) said

    Because you do it every ******* day mate. As you point out, it’s been five years…..meaning that it’s been 5 years of you spouting your unintelligible garbage, day in, day out.

    John how can it 5 years ago if you have to drag every bit of information out of them and their policy of openness, honesty and transparency.

    Hey Dic the report

    Official Sensitive

    1 Horse Guards

    This report was only made public this week.

    Another little taste for you Duggsie

    As a result of our procurement testing we did not find any evidence that confirms fraudulent activity has taken place………………………….

    So Dougal does this mean that fraudulent activity didn’t take place?

    It is very difficult to find fraudulent activity if you don’t look to closely.

    So Joe Blow and your anonymous mate from wirral it is not five years for no reason this report was only issued this week and is again damning.



    John, I do hope they tell us what “Potty Mouth” had to say in your tribunal issue.

    They are not nice or fit for purpose.

  6. You really are a self-obsessed little man, aren’t you?

    Similar to a few other local pundits, the minute you face some criticism, you trot out the usual tired old accusations that the person *must* be a Council Officer or you try to suggest some lack of credibility because someone chooses to use a ‘User Name’ rather than their real name – 21st Century Pal, user names are like ars*holes…….Everyone’s got one. You seem to be a bit more tolerant of user names, when they’re in support of you…..I mean, I presume Bobby47 wasn’t the name given to him by his parents……

    Seriously, the arrogance of you – You take over every article, vast majority of which are b*gger all to do with your issue and witter on – I noticed you started making increasing references to Lyndale and Girtrell in your comments….I think you probably realised that you were in danger of alienating everyone with your ramblings and so thought you’d try to garner some support with the other Council naysayers by crowbarring in references to the closure of these services.

    Part of me wants to see you in the same way as Martin Morton – i.e. someone who genuinely wanted to right some wrongs, but the truth is you’re diametrically opposed to someone like him. He experienced more sh*t from Wirral Council, than you EVER did, his grounds for whistleblowing were FAR more troubling than yours and yet, even in the worst moments, he never conducted himself the way you do.

    • There’s nothing wrong with using a pseudonym or a nom de plume.

      You’re right that bobby47 isn’t really called bobby47.

      Lyndale School isn’t closed yet, it’s closure date agreed by Cabinet is the 31st August 2016. However as the Lyndale School closes for summer holidays on the 19th July 2016, it’s effectively only open for pupils/staff for less than another week.

      Girtrell Court’s closure date is dependent on other replacement respite services being ready (earliest projected date December 2015 or January 2016).

    • Joe, I’ll be damned if I sit back and have my good name dragged through the Wirral mud. I’ll be damned if I let this slur pass without a suitable response.
      From hereon Joe, never, under any circumstances, no matter the urgency of your business or whether or not your intentions are to beat me with a mallet or embrace me and invite me to spend the afternoon with you in some ten pound a night hostelry where I’ll be expected to cozy up to you and engage in acts of love, ever tippy toe up my path, tap upon my door begging me for a small jug of milk, a measure of sugar and a single bloody teabag because your desperate for a cuppa because you need a hot drink to swallow your medication.
      If you even consider taking Lady Luck by the hand, plucking up the courage and disturbing me whilst I’m watching Wrestlemania, I’m going to open the door, tell you to clear off and chase you up the road screaming, ‘this is a good family home who diligently recycle their rubbish and we don’t appreciate you popping round here begging for our milk and sugar’.
      There! I’ve said it!

      • As usual bobby47 your style of writing is highly unique!

  7. G’day Joe

    I do so hope you are a clowncil officer because you would be wasting your life reading my **** otherwise…..

    I like to call people like "The Pretend Friend" a pretend friend because that is what he is and his wife is a total disgrace to her profession closing nursing homes and special schools after them both feigning disgust about what clowncil officers had done in our case.

    If you are not a clowncil officer you wouldn’t know about the bullying and cheating and lawbreaking of some officers.

    So why do you give a ****?



    Please don’t read me.

  8. G’day again Joe

    You say

    I think you probably realised that you were in danger of alienating everyone with your ramblings and so thought you’d try to garner some support

    I have never asked anyone to support me and I ramble on account of me only.

    I just write about people at wirral lying to me, cheating and wasting public monies and performing criminal acts.

    I just highlight other low life acts that they carry out like Lyndale and Girtrell Court.



    I take it you have read the GIAA Report or you wouldn’t have bothered commenting.

    • Seriously?

      You actually perceive yourself as some kind of people’s champion?

      “I just write about people at wirral lying to me, cheating and wasting public monies and performing criminal acts”

      “I just highlight other low life acts that they carry out like Lyndale and Girtrell Court”

      Mate, you might think that’s what you do……………….

      You write in a completely inaccessible, nonsensical, cliquey, manner. You demand people’s attention by banging on about BIG, in articles that have absolutely b*gger all to do with it.

      You haven’t said anything remotely new in years.

      Mate, you’re just the internet equivalent of the p*ssed-up old tramp you see on street corners, talking in tongues and spouting gibberish.

      • Joe, There are three things that WBC and indeed many other Councils fear. Firstly, the Cardin blog, Wirral In It Together. Secondly the Mighty Wirral Leaks and lastly but not least, The John Brace Blog.
        They all read Joe. They do it because they feel compelled to do it. Not because they enjoy it but because they must because they’re frightened that one day, and it’ll inevitably come, the whole bag of rats will collapse around them and bring about the end of The Game, that is, sucking the public lactating teat dry of money.
        Which brings me, in a roundabout way to my dear and good friend James Griffiths who, through choice, cognisant that ‘they’ all read the blogs, chooses to stand up and continue his personal crusade to have people held to account regarding the misappropriation of public funds, and repeatedly and over again, protests about his experiences dished out by ‘them’ to ‘him’ when he and Nigel Hobro tried to do the right thing.
        I’d liken our James to the guy who sat in Parliament Square for years protesting about the Iraq War. On and on this old fella continued, relentlessly pursuing justice, democracy and the hope and belief that one day someone would act and do something.
        And this is what James has done. Unable to conclude, ‘bugger it’, he continues to plough his furrow, shouting out, ‘this happened and it wasn’t right’ and refuses to give up.
        I for one am glad that James doesn’t give up and in time I hope you’ll come to appreciate the doggedness and sheer determination this lad employs every single time he posts his comments that’ll remind readers across the Wirral that a great wrong was done and thus far, despite the passage of time, bugger all has been done to bring some comfort and closure to James and Hobro.
        As a kindness to me and every one of us who wish our James well in his pursuit of some justice, show him some kindness and respect and give the man his due for not giving up.
        My very warmest regards to you Joe.

        • To be honest a lot of them (by them I mean Council employees) are too busy working to keep up with all that’s published on this blog (including comments).

          They (MPs/Lords) tried to change the law to stop the guy protesting about the Iraq War on Parliament Square.

          Then it was pointed out as his demonstration had started before they changed the law it applied to everyone else but him! 😀

          I agree with you bobby47 that a certain level of doggedness and persistence can work wonders.

          There are too many people out there that get easily dissuaded from a course of action and even I myself have had to not pursue matters to the nth degree from time to time for reasons of time, resources or other factors.

          • G’day John

            Spot on they think people will go away so they can do whatever they want.

            In the Wirral “Funny” Bizz case it is now proven that they shouldn’t have been given certain contracts in the first place and they cheated and stole about £2,000,000.00.



            Thanks John for not posting my two comments at 3.32 pm and 8.02pm yesterday although it wouldn’t have really mattered.

            Ta la (I’m learning scouse)

            • Those two comments you refer to (the one at 3.32pm and at 8.02pm) got caught by an automatic profanity filter.

              I have removed the bad language from both comments and approved them for publishing.

        • Where to begin?

          Right off the bat, let me tell you that I’ve forgotten more about the transgressions of Wirral Council, than you’ll ever know about them.

          Unlike you, living in Hereford, I actually experience the impact of Wirral Council’s **** ups first hand, so I’ll take no lessons from someone who, as far as I can tell, has no tangible connection with Wirral whatsoever.

          It seems that the catalyst for you beginning to pop up on Wirral sites was Bill Normans new role, after leaving Wirral Council and presumably the cannonfire from Cardin that accompanied his arrival in Hereford? I suppose that’s how tenuous a connection needs to be in the digital age. Sometimes makes you wish for simpler times.

          Either way, **** your condescension.

          Where I do agree with you is that, undoubtedly, Council Senior Managers, Members, etc, are reading these comments. What I don’t agree with is your suggestion is that they are, somehow, afraid of the comments made by Griffiths……….Personally, if I were them, I’d be howling reading his guff and would take some comfort from the fact that he has, himself, singledhandedly, done more to damage the credibility of Whistleblowers, than any machiavellian attempt by the Council to undermine, ever could

  9. G’day Joe

    And wirral made me this way.

    There is no doubt that you at wirral.

    Who else could be bothered to read **** all day and then have the time or be bothered to comment.

    May Ecca be with you.



    • “Who else could be bothered to read **** all day and then have the time or be bothered to comment.”

      Well, you, for a starter.

  10. G’day Bobby

    Isn’t it great that I have someone criticising me?

    Joey Blowy can’t be a clowncillor because they are all told to stay schtum or lose their measly allowances in line with their open, honest and transparency ******** that they spout about when talking of fantasies like Kev and Stella’s Stinking Stagnant Wirral Waters and The Chamber Pot.

    Thanks Bob.



    I have finally achieved getting someone to respond who obviously is a supporter of THEM.

    • Mate, I can’t even begin to tell you how much of an ******** I think you are.

      Only a complete moron could read what I’ve written, and come to the conclusion that I’m some kind of Council apologist

      • Luv ya dave

        • You got me.

          I am David Garry/Ball/Robbins/Armstrong/Green/Burgess-Joyce/Elderton*

          Delete as appropriate (depending on which branch of the tinfoil hat brigade you belong to)

          • Keep the wirral “funny” Bizz issue in the limelight Dave

          • The only dave’s I know are

            “I’ll write a report saying anything you like Kev”

            “Legweak” The very angry little man


            “Humpty Dumpty” who stands in public and lies

            You decide

            Luv ya XXX

  11. G’day Joe

    You say

    Mate, you’re just the internet equivalent of the p*ssed-up old tramp you see on street corners, talking in tongues and spouting gibberish.

    My doctor was fully aware of the stress that wirral caused me and often asked if I had dark thoughts.



  12. G’day John

    My last thought and rambling (sober) before I have a holiday from the issue.

    It might even give them a chance to DO THE RIGHT THING.

    I wonder John after that first whistle blowing meeting with AdderleyDadderleyDooLally and the now “Chamber Potty” both from Invest (Inthyself) wirral they just thought that

    Wirral “Funny” Bizz are sacking this dude anyway

    He can’t prove they were incompetent

    He doesn’t know about the Big recipients that went bad

    He doesn’t know about the Lockwood/Harbac asset stripping

    He doesn’t know about are procurement irregularities

    Well John all I can say is


    and do you know John they don’t know who squealed like a pig.



    It might be five years on but it is all still criminal.

    Ta ra for now I’m just goin for a chuckennn buttty (The scouse is cumming along boss)