Why is Wirral Council’s draft 2015/16 statement of accounts to be amended following concerns by myself and their external auditor?

Why is Wirral Council’s draft 2015/16 statement of accounts to be amended following concerns by myself and their external auditor?

Tom Sault (Acting Section 151 Officer) Wirral Council at the Audit and Risk Management Committee on the 13th June 2016

Why is Wirral Council’s draft 2015/16 statement of accounts to be amended following concerns by myself and their external auditor?


Tom Sault (Acting Section 151 Officer) Wirral Council at the Audit and Risk Management Committee on the 13th June 2016
Tom Sault (Acting Section 151 Officer) Wirral Council at the Audit and Risk Management Committee on the 13th June 2016

I’d perhaps better start by declaring the interest that I’m the person the letter below is to, in response to a letter I wrote to Robin Baker.

In an update to Why am I objecting to Wirral Council’s draft statement of accounts for the 2015/16 financial year? published on the 11th July 2016, I have today received a further reply (that you can read below) from Wirral Council’s auditors Grant Thornton dated 19th July 2016 which I quote from below. I’ve linked to the legislation referred to and the page of the statement of accounts that’s the issue. It seems they agree with me (although curiously don’t address the issue of bonuses too in their letter). I’ve left out some of the bits of their headed notepaper which I summarise in brackets ().

Please note the below letter I quote from was written by Robin Baker of Grant Thornton UK LLP (not myself).

Our Ref RJB/SB
Mr J Brace
134 Boundary Road
CH43 7PH

(Grant Thornton’s mailing address, telephone number, fax number and website address)

19 July 2016

Dear Mr Brace

Wirral Metropolitan Borough Council
Thank you for your letter of 10 July 2016 to me, which also includes a copy of your letter of the same date to Mr Tom Sault.

I note from your letter that you wish to raise an objection to the accounts of Wirral Metropolitan Borough Council. You identify that the draft accounts included on the Council”s website does not comply with the requirements contained within the Accounts and Audit Regulations 2015. Specifically for Category 1 authorities there is a requirements under Regulation 2(1)(a) that for employees who salary is more than £150,000 per year, that the name of the employee is included within the Senior employee remuneration table. You highlight the Council’s Chief Executive is on a salary in excess of £150,000 yet he is not named in the table at note 32 of the draft accounts. You ask us to let you know whether we will consider this objection.

As part of our audit process I have reviewed the draft financial statements prepared by the Council. My review also highlighted the omission of the name of the Chief Executive from note 32 to the draft financial statements and I asked my team to raise the matter with the Council. The Council has acknowledged that the failure to name the Chief Executive in the draft financial statements is an oversight that will be corrected in the revised financial statements that will be published before 30 September 2016.

Thank you for raising this matter with me. Given the Council acknowledges the failure to name the Chief Executive is an oversight and will be corrected, we do not consider there is a need to treat this matter as a formal objection to the accounts. The failure to comply with the regulations will be corrected and there will be no continuing breach that would require us to consider whether the accounts are contrary to law.

If you do not agree with this view, please let me know as soon as possible.

Yours sincerely,


Robin Baker
For Grant Thornton UK LLP

(bit at the bottom about how they’re Chartered Accounts, a LLP registered in England and Wales, registered office details, list of members available, regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority, member firm of Grant Thornton International (GTIL) etc)

If you click on any of the buttons below, you’ll be doing me a favour by sharing this article with other people.

Author: John Brace

New media journalist from Birkenhead, England who writes about Wirral Council. Published and promoted by John Brace, 134 Boundary Road, Bidston, CH43 7PH. Printed by UK Webhosting Ltd t/a Tsohost, 113-114 Buckingham Avenue, Slough, Berkshire, England, SL1 4PF.

36 thoughts on “Why is Wirral Council’s draft 2015/16 statement of accounts to be amended following concerns by myself and their external auditor?”

  1. G’day john

    I suppose as the new CEO is like the invisible man you could ask Grant (Chocolate Teapot) Thornton to do a stock take.

    I doubt there is any substance to the shell if he can’t even clean up and solve the blots on the clowncil that are Wirral “Funny” Bizz and Wirralgate.



    1. I think Wirral Bizz has been kicked into the long grass.

      As to Wirralgate, Wirral Council seem determined to shed as little light on that as is humanly possible!

      1. G’day John

        I will just keep reminding them about Wirral “Funny” Bizz until they do the RIGHT THING.

        A crime is a crime is a crime as we have seen from recent long running case(s).

        There is a reason I am sure people have to go to jail or at least be punished.

        I suppose all of next year we will be talking about the miners strike of….. long before Wirral “Funny” Bizz.



        1. Well talking of the miners, there was an interesting emergency motion discussed about Orgreave (that happened in 1984) calling for a public inquiry at the Liverpool City Council meeting on Wednesday evening.

          Now you see if you and Nigel had been miners and not accountants, maybe the Labour Party would be more interested! 😀

          See the debate below starting at 41:37 in the first video and continuing in the second.


    1. Isn’t oversight one of Surjit Tour’s favourite words?

      So Grant Thornton might just be repeating what a Council employee has told Grant Thornton..

  2. John,
    If you want to engage/interest the general public in your excellent work, I would ask that , if possible, you dissuade your regular respondents from speaking in tongues. I realise that their contributions may be made from their knowledge of the workings of local government, but from the viewpoint of an ordinary interested voter their language is both silly and childish.

    1. G’day Francis

      I presume you are talking about my stupid, ridiculous insulting language and I do invite you whole heartedly to not read me I wouldn’t read the rubbish.


      Whilst my friend Nigel “Highbrow” Hobro and I went to these people with all the evidence in the world and we were conspired against for five years and counting and that was in plain English evidence.

      They chose with their policy of honesty, openness and transparency to totally ignore and cover up all the criminal activity and conspire against us and hinder and frustrate any attempt by us to have a £2,000,000.00 theft and other offences such as asset stripping to go without punishment.

      So there is no one more eloquent with the English language than my mate “Highbrow” so if they don’t listen to him I will continue to insult them with my bull shit.



      So Francis please feel free not to bother with my garbage if I can’t get justice I will just insult them for the rest of their public lives.

      1. Rather than asking people to stop reading your ****, why don’t you just stop writing it.

    2. Well said Francis.

      Griffiths, no one, other than Wirral Council, has ever disputed the veracity of what you and Hobro claim.

      It is the MANNER in which you make your claims that people, myself included, object to.

      Even though it’s been said to you a few times, you’ve got such a massive victim complex, that you don’t seem to register that no one has criticised you for whistleblowing, what you are being criticised for is your constant spamming, day in day out, of every Wirral-Council related article, and the fact that what you do write, is largely incomprehensible to Joe Public.

      I saw your comments on WL about me, and I noticed something that perhaps explains why you behave, the way you do.

      You said “…….(John) Brace’s wonderful site that is a must read for all the co-conspirators in the Wirralgate and Wirral ‘Funny’ Bizz scandals”

      I think this is highly instructive, as I get the impression that you seem to think that WL and Brace’s sites are, essentially, exclusive platforms for you and your ‘clique’ (you know, the Co-Conspirators!) to exchange messages on.

      You, Cardin and a few others, seem to think that you’re the only people interested in the happenings of the Wirral Council which may explain why you write in such an inaccessible manner.

      I mean, you say “I just highlight other low life acts that they carry out like Lyndale and Girtrell” – You need to explain to me how, writing in the largely nonsensical way you do, you are highlighting anything, to anyone, other than your ‘Co-conspirators’ which, lets’ face it, is like pushing against an open door anyway.

      1. At least one person has commented to me in real life about the volume of comments left by one particular person on this blog.

        A certain level of jargon is understandable (whether that be in local government, law, accountancy etc).

        The closure decision about Lyndale School made by Wirral Council and the response to the campaign not to close Girtrell Court were made by the same councillors that were involved in decisions over the whistleblowing claims of James. Both issues have been reported (in depth) by this blog. Both Lyndale School and Girtrell Court are scheduled for closure this year.

        Therefore I think James’ point is that it isn’t a one off lapse of judgement that James disagrees with, but a pattern of behaviour (from his perspective) that shows from his perspective that certain councillors are behaving either:

        a) contrary to what the public want or

        b) against the public interest.

        Therefore his comments are largely political speech.

        1. It’s interesting that you choose to use the word ‘Jargon’ to describe what Griffith’s writes, when his prose seems to be largely comprised of name calling.

          1. I try (within reason) to be as diplomatic and as nice about people as possible.

            However local government is full of jargon whether referred to councillors as Members or all the three letter acronyms that are used that mean little or nothing to the public…

    3. It’s not for me to censure people for how they wish to express themselves in comments on this blog.

      Yes I have the power to edit, delete or approve comments in a moderation queue.

      If you are referring to James, he writes in Australian English which is a different dialect to British English, therefore may be what you are referring to when you state “speaking in tongues”.

      However, you are entitled to have an opinion on what James writes in comments on this blog, just as he has opinions that he expresses through leaving comments.

      I’ve (rather briefly and foolishly) tried censorship in the past and received a lot of complaints for being heavy handed.

      During election periods (for example in the leadup to the May elections this year), different laws apply so comments are not automatically published.

      If you have a particular complaint about a comment or comments left then please raise it with me, my email address is on the contact page.

      1. John, Griffith’s lack of coherency has nothing to do with any australian connection.

        1. I sometimes have difficulty in understanding some of the Australian English used though by James as it’s a dialect I’m not overly familiar with.

          It’s not just a case of the Australian English language though, it’s a cultural attitude towards language too.

          What’s written by one person can have a meaning to another person different to the way that the original author intended.

        2. Joe perhaps you would like a copy of the Government Internal audit agency’s findings on the isus scandal?

          The report has been in the hands of wbc since March 2015. However when it was released to me earlier this month I checked whether Members of the Audit and risk committee had seen it…no they had not including the vice chair.

          Why not? If you give me an email address to nigelhobro@gmail.com then I will forward it to you.

          You will understand then the motivation of wbc for stymying Mr Griffiths , and indeed myself.

          The issue should be as fresh as the day the reports are finallypublished.. the authorities play a long game perhaps in the way of finding a good day to release bad news

          1. Nigel, I don’t know how many times I can keep saying the same thing…

            I have never seen a comment on John’s site, Wirralleaks, Cardin’s blog or anywhere else that has ever disputed the truth of what you and Griffiths claim has gone on regarding ISUS.

            It’s his constant spamming of every single article relating to Wirral Council with the same nonsensical diatribe that I, and apparently others, object to.

            How many visitors to these sites are put off commenting because they think their comments are going to get swallowed up and hijacked by his garbage?

            1. G’day Nigel

              Its taken five years to get someone to highlight our issues for us and I must thank Joey Blowey.

              Because he has commented one would think he is not a clowncillor because of his dishonesty, closedness, and opaqueness.

              Joe Blow ha ha ha ha (so clever a pseudonym why didn’t I think of that)

              Nigel, Joey just doesn’t realise how hard it is to be so unintelligible.

              Because he is concerned about me calling people names, sticks and stones, it makes you think it is a clowncillor.

              I think Ecca the invisible CEO should earn his £200,000.00+ and hunt down this coward in his ranks who hides behind Joe Blow.

              Errr who could it be

              “Nurse Rat”
              “The Pretend Friend”
              “The Shyster”
              “Ugh Boots”
              “Clowncillor Crispy Creme Doughnut”
              “Phil the Very Very Deluded Dill”
              “His Ugly Twin Brother”

              Who knows?

              Who cares?



              If you have read this garbage you need to get out more.

              1. Ps Nigel

                Joey says

                It’s his constant spamming of every single article relating to Wirral Council with the same nonsensical diatribe that I, and apparently others, object to.

                Sounds to me like ……I, and apparently others, object to.

                Sounds like Joey’s plural not singular.

                I wonder what they call their group (gang)?



            2. We do not disagree nor ever have that people don’t or ever have not disbelieved my assertions.

              What I would wish to write as a means of wrapping up the loose ends of the affair is that there were bigger motivations for the deliberate obfuscation of wbc than just reputation damage or the phoenixing of assets out of a big claimant.

              For the damage to the legitimate interests of other persons and companies than myself you do need to read the GIAA report.
              My offer still stands.

              1. I’m not sure you’d ever get an email address out of these people Nigel. It’s too risky.

                Their anonymity serves a low, sordid purpose – that of protecting; of putting in place an obstacle – beyond which we can only guess at their true identities.

                They can pour whatever the hell venom they like over the top of this wall and onto the Wirral blogs, and if it’s approved then their dissembling function has worked and the deed is done.

                For my own part, I have to say I’ve always liked James’ contributions. I can relate to where they’re coming from. Not everybody can do this – possibly because they are flexible ‘yes’ men, bending to others’ will at the drop of a hat, and it’s all a little alien to them.

                The comments are an acquired taste, have had me laughing out loud sometimes, and when read in conjunction with your own posts, both have the stamp of a worthy pair of qualified professionals who’ve been around the block in whistleblowing terms.

                You’ve kept your dignity, morality, flown the flag for ethical standards, have never had to rely upon favours from power abusers and have fought long and hard against the crooks and sociopaths.

                You’ve also chosen not to hunker down beneath a wall of anonymity in order to take potshots at your perceived enemy.

                You’re both out there in the open, standing proud and tall. I like that.

                As for Mr Blow, I don’t like it. I personally don’t have a clue who it is, but if I was forced to guess I’d say he may have worked at Wirral Council briefly, perhaps in a relatively senior interim role, has made a valued contribution to repairing the dysfunctional cracks, has been rewarded in blood money and has moved on, with no sense of any moral or ethical misgivings intervening to prevent the full extent of his dirty work from being fully accomplished.

                That’s all conjecture, but Mr Blow has never tried to post to my blog, at least not as ‘Joe Blow’ which is a wise move on his part.

                1. As I think James points out, if they do as you suggest it just adds the oxygen of publicity to what James is going on about.

                  I’ve no idea who “Joe Blow” is in real life.

                  It takes a certain personality type to blow the whistle and whether the whistleblower is seen as a hero, villain or combination of the two depends on your perspective. Whistleblowers are often whistleblowing about the tip of a very large iceberg.

                  Personally, my view is that if things were working as they should, there would be no need to blow the whistle. So it’s tackling what caused the whistleblowing (by that I mean the issues not the person) that should be tackled rather than the shoot the messenger approach used in going after the whistleblowers.

  3. 5 years and 17 days since AdderleyDadderleyDooLally and “The Chamber Potty” lied to me and and they are still hiding information that is damning that the Information Commissioner will squeeze out of them eventually.

    You might not have any stamina……..

    Get back to work.

  4. G’day John and Joe Blow




    Wirral “Funny” Bizz

    Wirral “Funny” Bizz

    You shouldn’t read this Joe I am about to be incoherent.

    I presume Joey Blowfly hasn’t taken “Highbrow” up on his offer of sending him the latest hidden report.

    I also bet he hasn’t taken on The Good Lord of Wirral because I have been tipped off that the person who is not reading this could be “Phil the Very Very Deluded Dill’s” neighbour and bessie Fartin Lobsterpot.



    He won’t respond on the weekend John because it is in his own time (unpaid) and not the end of the week.

    And John, before he does respond he should just ask his mates who should have got that contract and why didn’t they?

    1. I’m wondering whether if I provide our friend Mr. Brace with something that proves my identity (i.e. Not David Garry, Liptrot and whoever else the voices in your head are telling you I am) that you’ll acknowledge that you’re just a paranoid, annoying little mental case?

      1. G’day Joey

        You just do what you like I am not in the least bit interested in you or who you are I just love the fact you, and thank you whole hardheartedly, for bringing more attention to the Big, ISUS and Working Neighbourhoods scandal to the fore.

        I don’t even think John would care who you are.



        You don’t have the cojones anyway Blowy to say who you are because you know that Wirral “Funny” Bizz should not have got the work in the first place and should not have been allowed to help themselves to about £2,000,000.00 and then allowed to get away with it and then be protected for five years and counting.

        Even worse and very very criminal hurting the people who were more qualified and should have got the work.

        Got to go Joey I am being watched I think.

        Oh **** I can hear the voices again Wirral “Funny” Bizz Big ISUS Working Neighbourhoods Davies Foulkes Jones Adderley Garry Basnett Tour Armstrong Ball Bradbury

        Keep it going Joey.

          1. G’day John

            It has to be someone in the know that is irked.


            He won’t say who he is with their policy of openness honesty and transparency.



            I am surprised John with the intellect of the cohort more people have not spoken up.

            I would suggest John calling himself blow joey he is someone over 60.

        1. “You just do what you like I am not in the least bit interested in you or who you are”

          Stop telling porkies Jimbo

          Last week, you thought I was David Garry, then you think I’m Martin Liptrot. Now you’re speculating that I’m over 60……….. Good God Mate, for someone who isn’t the ‘least bit’ interested in who I am, you’ve certainly put a lot of effort into speculating who I might be!!!!!


          1. G’day Joey

            I think I have fallen for you with your wonderful prose about Wirral “Funny” Bizz and them being given a contract they shouldn’t have got….. knocking off about £2,000,000.00 that A4E was telling Adderley DaderleyDooLally “The Chamber Potty” “Humpty Dumpty” and “The Garbage Lady”.

            Do you know the funny bit Joey I was invited to join the “firm” to add some quality.

            MMmm why did “Addles” and “The Chamber Potty keep paying them for 18 months after the whistle was blown?

            Why do they keep hiding report after report.

            Why did they get shot of Beverley Edwards and hid her report and replace it with dave Garry’s croc of **** and pay him off £46,000.00.

            Why do you think Joey they are still hiding the names of the other Big fund recipients.

            A little more shenanigans do you think my little lovely?

            Keep the topic hot Joey and i will love you forever more.



            Got to go I am hearing those voices again…it’s AdderleyDadderleyDooLally telling me of all his important contacts at the police and the Revenue and he is going to clear up Wirral “Funny” Bizz etc etc oh he’s kissing the name on the back of his football shirt ‘L I A R’

  5. G’day John

    Interesting Joey is trying to say I am mad.

    I think it was Wilkie who tried to hang sexual harassment on “Highbrow” when he first turned up.

    They really don’t like to be caught out John.

    I hate to think of what they think of you.

    They should put more effort into doing the right thing and not what some bully that has bullied his way to the top of the “Party” tells them.

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