Sunday, 6 February 2011

RIP Jim Hanley - reprise

The Reading Evening Post has already had to correct its report of the sad and untimely death of Cllr Jim Hanley, either not having checked the date he was first elected to Reading Borough Council, or letting themselves be briefed by Lovelock. Before things get even more unseemly let me make some suggestions. First, chair and officers of Reading Labour Party, update your website and Facebook page with an appropriate tribute, or at least mention, at the time of writing the only comments from any Reading Labour figure are in the Reading Evening Post (go figure) and even that organ carries many more comments from figures from other parties. Next, give some support to Jim's nearest and dearest - I remember the deaths of Cllrs Lockey and Wild. Maureen Lockey's widower Alan was thrown to the wolves, with predictable results. He should have been cared for. Wilf was a widower when he died, but his family remember. I was in correspondence with his granddaughter fairly recently. Third, wait for the funeral before plotting the succession. Many were disgusted by the meeting held to plot the imposition of a candidate on Church ward when Maureen died, even before her funeral had been held, and by the fact that the party then failed to commemorate her death with a minute's silence. Jim had said he was standing down, so presumably a candidate is in place. Also, Whitley is unlikely to elect a councillor from a party other than Labour, and for that reason its doors do not get knocked very often. It is not a ward I have ever been interested in, because it is in Reading West. However, knock the doors, for the sake of Jim, who cared about Whitley, if you don't care yourselves. Move the writ for a by-election, I suggest Thursday 31st March or 7th April. Easter is late this year. Don't wait. I promise you this is a good idea. Not only will Whitley get worked, but democratic legitimacy will be tested.

You know it makes sense.

30 comments:

Anonymous said...

How disguesting that you can use the death of a good and decent man to take yet more pot shots at people that you feel did you down. Seek help, I'm begging you.

Anonymous said...

Reading Evening Post moderates all comments before publishing them. Their moderator knocks off Friday afternoon until Monday morning. So there could be 50 testimonials awaiting moderation. Or 500 or none - you will never know before morning.

Most Labour activists are stunned but there Facebook tributes, not to mention the blog post from which you picked up the news.

You post is in appalling taste - the sudden and premature death of a popular councillor is NOT a good handle from which to hang another set of broadsides at Reading Labour Party

Jane Griffiths said...

"pot shots"? Huh? This post is not about me, whatever gave you the idea it was? How very bizarre. It was a plea to those who will make (perhaps already have made) these decisions not to make the mistakes they made in the past (which were nothing to do with me) but to do the right thing. I really hope they will. Any condolences will be made I hope privately by private individuals. And thanks for that about the Post- I had no idea,how quaintly 20th-century of them. I do hope however that tributes will be posted on the Reading Labour website and Facebook page, it was in rather poor taste to publish in the Post first, hein?

Augustus Carp said...

I think that the rule nowadays is that if a sitting Councillor dies within six months of the next planned election for the same ward, then the by election has to be held on the same day. Known colloquially as the Six Month Rule, it accounts for the smaller number of local government by elections in the UK between Christmas and May.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 18:33

Just as well most people have ignored your nonsense and Howarthian spelling.

What is sick is your attempt to use the death of a well loved Labour Councilllor to continue the boys (You know who you are) story about Jane's health when you didn't have the courage to say anything against her when she was in place. Is that the best you can do?

Anonymous said...

Perhaps anonymous 18:33 needs help? Have you recently had a family break up? Have you organised to unseat a Labour MP and resulted in the election of a Tory MP? Do you claim to be Labour but in Reading East done the bidding of the Tories? Are you really John Howarth? Do you have mental heath problems?

Anonymous said...

Jane you are despised by so many people due to being the lowest form of scum. Why don't you do us all a favour and hit the bottle to oblivian.

Anonymous said...

you need to take this down jane. this is vile a man has died and people are talking about your deselection. cmon have some sense.

Lawrence said...

What a load of rubbish you spout Jane - sometimes your dead one and then other times...

Anonymous said...

Oh, the spelling. Of course, got me bang to rights. Sorry everybody.

Jane Griffiths said...

"your dead one" hmmm.

Duncan Bruce said...

Jane can we not just tone down the rhetoric for a few days?

I did't know Jim well but I understand his death has shocked a great many in the Labour group and in our members base. As far as I am aware no one has even discussed a by-election.

Let's just leave off the attacks for a few days and let people morn and remember Jim.

Jane Griffiths said...

attacks? no-one is being attacked, whatever are you on about? and why on earth are you bothering to comment here? after all, I live in Strasbourg, and have already been informed that the only people who have the right to comment on events in Reading are those who live there. you wouldn't be trying to tell me that my blog has some influence by any chance? if you did that would explode all my cherished assumptions. btw do you like being featured on the strapline of this blog?

oh and it is spelled "mourn".

Anonymous said...

My goodness, Jane - there really is a lot of muck and bile out there - and I bet you have only included the milder comments here.

They really do hate you, don't they?

When I say, 'they', I mean the tiny but influential and bullying clique who conspired with Loaf-Head and Mamma Grizzly to deprive Reading East of a Labour MP who was regarded as hard-working and excellent by her constituents - so much so that even MORE of them voted for her in 2001 than in 1997.

Oh - and can we please stop the business, various Salter-Queen posters of 'using the death of a well-loved councillor', to drag up the cheap ,'mental health', 'drunk' allegations?
Unless, of course, you correctly apply them to said Salter who - rumour has it, developed a severe drink problem in his last 'term' and was advised by the grey-beards to stand down.

My hunch is that Jane and Sig Other actually liked and respected this guy - that the feeling was mutual and that they have been pretty devastated by his death.

Enough for you?

Ok?

Then for goodness sake grow up,dry those crocodile tears.

Anonymous said...

Schoolmarm Griffiths corekting the bad speling again.

Jane Griffiths said...

crocodile tears is right, at the time of writing, three days after his death, there is no statement or tribute on either the Reading Labour Party website or its Facebook page - the latter has an offhand response to someone who tried to post their own tribute to Jim. The boys don't give a stuff.

dreamingspire said...

Jane: off topic, but one of your tweets trigered this. If you spill coffee or any other liquid over a laptop and said liquid obviously gets inside, immediately you must power it down: unplug the power brick if its in use, disconnect the laptop's battery quick as you can. Then it might be possible to save the machine - but get it to a repairer ASAP to be dismantled and the components washed. Believe me: I used to develop and sell equipment into 1980s financial dealing rooms, with big custom keyboards, and the instructions to unplug immediately (and swill under the tap) in case of a spill saved many of the keyboards.

Anonymous said...

Tribute went up on Reading Labour Party's Facebook page at 0852 Saturday.

The volunteer maintaining the website, however, does seem to be slow off the mark. So what? It is not meant to have the same speed of reaction as Facebook (and doesn't).

Duncan is right, even if he can't spell.

Anonymous said...

Apart from attempting to stuff and destroy anybody who has ever cared about the Labour Patry - and who has tried to increase its support and following.

The boys - wherever they are, regard the Labour Party as a personal fiefdom or select secret society - and anyone who wants to break this down and return it to the very people it was created to represent has to be a 'bad' person and must be destroyed.
Unless the national Party takes this seriously and deals with 'the boys' it will continue to loiter around, unelected and representing precisely nobody.

Bud, sadly, it prefers, always, to support those who shout loudest, bully most and attack good Labour MPs and Party members rather than the Tories. Remember this, Ed - or go the way of Gordon.

Jane Griffiths said...

still nothing

http://www.readinglabour.org.uk/

they don't give a stuff

Jane Griffiths said...

and if there ever was a tribute on the facebook page it is not there now, also Jim is listed as a councillor there, with his full home address. Reading Borough Council does not publish that address on its website, because I believe Trish had very good reasons for not wanting her address to be made public. But what do they care, eh.

Trish Thomas said...

Please stop this vile bickering about who has commented or not commented on Jim's death. I have just been to register his death. None of you own him or his memory - any more than I do, but that is not a reason to use him or my loss as something to attack people or groups with, whatever you think of them. As you may or may not know I never comment on the blogs and I rarely read them, but this is just too horrible. This will be my first and last post here. So either just show some decency - or not. Trish Thomas

Anonymous said...

Wonder if Rachel Eden will be spirited in to fill the gap - in the interests of upping her profile?

Jane Griffiths said...

Absolutely right Trish, I have of course not let the worst of the comments through, but those who have commented have gone far enough. They will have to find somewhere else to vent their bile. Poor boys - I suppose.

David Akroyd said...

From the number of comments, this piece obviously hit a raw nerve, as the truth often does.

Anybody with any experience of the internal workings of Reading Labour Party would know that when one of their own suffers a misfortune, illness or death the typical response is not how can we help but how can this be turned to our advantage.

One example, albeit a long time ago. Remember Michael English, died about 1994? A veteran Labour member, but a real unfortunate in his life, both an alcohlic as well as compulsive gambler.

Towards the end of his life he was obviously both physically and mentally wrecked (as was clear from his incoherent rants at Ward meetings) but he was the only member of Minster Ward Labour Party in the Coley flats, so they needed his support.

His local ward party even paid his party membership for him. When he died though, hardly anyone from Reading Labour Party gave a damn.

Not surprising that some people are sensitive about these things being made public.

Jane Griffiths said...

Yes I remember Michael English very well

Anonymous said...

I assume the poster is not referring to Michael English, ex Labour MP?

I knew his son quite well - and certainly by about 2007/8, that Michael English was alive and kicking - but certainly seems to have shared the fondness for the sauce with the ME mentioned. But not dead. Oh no. Not dead at all.

Jane Griffiths said...

No a different person altogeer

Anonymous said...

What lovely, not at all suspicious 20 -30 minute intervals between the terrible spelling, punctuation etc late on Sunday and early Monday. Type a vile comment, have a pint. Type a vile comment, have a pint... Personally, I think you do sometimes hit rather hard and without need Jane, but then I suspect most would if they shared similar experiences as you had with these oafs. Your hope for the local Labour group to be respectful in a way they have repeatedly not been in the past is obviously not such an attack. It appears to be a plea they do something well that should just be human nature but to many of them is not. Your post was extremely compassionate (given them a reminder of what not to do even when you usually encourage them to bugger it all up) and was highly respectful of a deceased friend. That some of those you encouraged to learn from past mistakes should start using your post as a means to fling about cheap insults and lies of the past shows exactly why they need advice as to what to do in these tragic circumstances.

Anonymous said...

Whitley selected a good candidate six months ago to succeed Jim. She has been working with him and the other councillors since then.