Skip to content

Titbits – council fiddles with freesheet as fire safety response put on ice

Titbits bird
◆ Mayor Philip Glanville took to Twitter on Thursday 22 June to promise “further info” on fire safety would be released the next day.

The info materialised on the council’s website at half past five on a Friday evening. When asked why, the Mayor said “staff, resident representatives and councillors” needed to be briefed.

He continued: “We also ensured that up-to-date information was in Hackney Today. Once this work was complete, we published it online.

“I would not accept that 17:33 was in anyway an issue as the information was designed to be from the council to the community not a statement to the media.”

So why give it to a council-run freesheet, before posting it on the council website at 5.30pm on a Friday, when few are likely to read it?

A mayor who makes announcements on Twitter and wants to talk directly to “the community” rather than inform the media. Who does that remind you of?

◆ Two days: How soon after the Grenfell Tower fire Hackney Council had completed “initial cladding tests”. Twelve days: How long it took the council to tell the media about the tests.

Real news stories don't come cheap.

The Hackney Citizen is the borough’s only independent newspaper, and is now in its tenth year.

Our hard-hitting journalism has uncovered fire safety failures in tower blocks, revealed plans to criminalise rough sleepers, exposed dodgy letting agents and reported on many other issues of public concern.

We’ve always been totally free in print and online, but advertising revenues are falling.

That’s why we’re asking for your help.

Hackney Citizen’s high quality journalism is produced by a small team on a shoestring budget, so we’re asking you to make a monthly contribution to fund our work, enabling the paper to survive and thrive.

Support the Hackney Citizen from as little as £2 per month.

Can you spare £4 a month or more? Get the paper delivered direct to your door each month! (UK only)