There have been many questions surrounding Cratus, the lobbying and communications company that leader of the council, David Pugh, recently declared he works for.
To try and get to the bottom of speculation of the company’s involvement with Isle of Wight projects, we spoke with Nick Kilby, founder of Cratus, this week.
He told On The Wight that Cratus are not currently working with any projects on the Isle of Wight, including the highways PFI.
Wellow Wind farm application
He confirmed that Cratus had worked for Infinergy, on the Wellow Wind Farm application, actively involved in the public consultation and provided a ‘strategy for communications’ for the company.
He tells us they stopped working for the company on the day the planning application was rejected.
David Pugh’s involvement
Nick went on to say that when David Pugh had joined the company because of his “knowledge and expertise in the world of education”.
Nick explained that David joined Cratus, “He, by definition of our code of conduct, stopped us from working on the Island … apart from Ecoisland, because we do that out of the goodness of our hearts.”
He continued, “Our company only works with people who are extremely honourable and we wouldn’t work with David if he wanted anything different, and we would not embarrass David in his home town.”
Working for Eco Island
In relation to the Ecoisland Partnership (which, for clarity, no longer has any connection to the Isle of Wight council) Nick told On The Wight that Cratus had met with the partnership twice and given them advice.
He said that they had offered free work to Ecoisland, all agreed up front and they “would support Ecoisland as much as we can”.
Nick went on to say the advice offered was “how to keep Ecoisland relevant to the Mainland”.
Ecoisland say otherwise
An On The Wight reader had commented last week that Ecoisland informed him of the opposite, saying the organisation were not working with Cratus.
Indeed, a spokesperson from Ecoisland told On The Wight, “We did have some initial conversations with Cratus at the beginning of the year after they attended one of our Greentank community meetings with Infinergy.
“The relationship was never formalised due to general busy schedules and mainly not being able to get David Green and Cratus together to progress anything and see if we were a good fit. I can confirm that we have neither employed or paid Cratus.”
For many readers, this is where the confusion sets in.
Ecoisland say that they have not ’employed or paid Cratus’, but Cratus say in one of their brochures (as has been pointed out by many On The Wight readers) that “Eco Island appoints Cratus to help their political engagement and communications.” (see document embedded below for your convenience)
Following our phone call with Nick Kilby of Cratus, we contacted him by email to put the details of Ecoisland’s view of their relationship, asking him how this could be. He replied, “I have no comment on what Eco Island say. We continue to be fans of their work but the details of our relationship remain private.”
Well that’s cleared that up then!