Isle Of Wight Highways PFI Preferred Bidder Company Named

The companies that the council has chosen as its preferred bidder to carry out the 25-year contract on Island roads has been named.

As we disclosed on Twitter earlier, the council has named their preferred bidder for the Island’s roads PFI.

This in the council’s own words – Ed.

The Isle of Wight Council has chosen Vinci Concessions and Ringway as its Highway PFI partner.

The company – which already has strong links with the Island – was chosen by the council’s Cabinet last night (29 May) as partner for what will be the largest engineering project ever undertaken in the county.

Vinci Concessions designs, finances, builds and operates all kinds of public infrastructure world wide while Ringway is a market leader in the provision of highway related infrastructure services to local authorities throughout the UK. Ringway already carry out the Island’s winter maintenance contract.

Now this stage of the process has been reached, the full scope of the project – that involves university bursaries for future civil engineering students, schemes to stabilise highways that suffer ground movement and over 120 schemes to reduce highways flooding – can be detailed.

At the heart of the PFI project will be the comprehensive upgrade – and maintenance over 25 years – of the Island’s road, footway and cycleway network. Also included will be the council’s winter maintenance and roadside verge maintenance programmes as well as its street cleansing operations. The CCTV network will also be maintained and improved as will the Island’s street-lighting network with the installation of low-energy LED bulbs.

The project with Vinci not only includes proposals to keep open the highways at some of the Island’s most unstable stretches including the Military Road and Niton Undercliff, similar work to address movement affecting roads will also take place at around a dozen other locations.

There will also be at least 120 separate schemes across the Island to tackle stretches of highway prone to rainwater flooding.

In other aspects, the contract will introduce public waste bin receptacles that allow pedestrians to recycle their rubbish.

In order to maximise career opportunities for Islanders, Vinci Ringway will also sponsor a number of university bursaries for civil engineering students.

Under the agreement, Vinci must have regard for the contract’s carbon and water footprints. As well as the obvious environmental benefit of this approach the local economy also stands to be boosted significantly as it puts local businesses in prime position to provide materials and labour.

The PFI is financed in the main through a government grant – not a loan and therefore does not have to be repaid. The council will make an annual contribution which will be less than the sum it currently pays to provide the services that will in future be provided through the PFI.

Actual work will begin in April next year with the bulk of the Island’s roads upgraded within the first seven years – known as the core investment period.

Traditionally core investment periods are five years but the council has negotiated a longer period to seek to minimise disruption, particularly in the tourism season. Vinci will be required by the contract to minimise disruption and working overnight, when and where appropriate, will be a common feature of the Highways PFI.

Councillor Edward Giles, Isle of Wight Council cabinet member for highways and transport said: “All those who use Island roads will, I am sure, appreciate the need for this comprehensive upgrade. We are about to embark on a huge project that will leave the Island with a transport infrastructure of unprecedented quality.

“Now we have reached this stage and agreed a final business case we are able to say more about the nature of the work that the project involves. Announcements such as that around the highway stability and drainage work and the university bursaries hopefully begin to further illustrate the scope of this project and the varied benefits it will mean for the Island.

“This is a once in a lifetime project to give our roads network a complete overhaul and upgrade and to do so in a way that offers the best possible value to council taxpayers.”

Stuart Love, Isle of Wight Council director of economy and environment, said: “The procurement process has been a complex one but necessarily so as we have had to agree a long-term contract that represents the very best interest of road users and council tax payers. We now have a partner that, like the council, is totally committed to a project that will not only dramatically improve the transport infrastructure but which will do so in a way that benefits the local economy and is mindful of the local environment.”

Kevin Smith, chief executive of the Isle of Wight Chamber of Commerce, said: “I am delighted a scheme that stands to provide such a major boost to our economy has taken another big step forward.

“It is also pleasing that the preferred bidder has strong connection with the Island and, through that, understands what local business can offer.”

A spokesman for Vinci and Ringway added: “Vinci Concessions and Ringway are delighted to have been selected, by the Isle of Wight Council, as Preferred Bidder for the Isle of Wight Highways PFI on the Island.

“We look forward to working with the council to ensure we deliver a high quality, value-for-money service which meets the needs of local people and the Island’s economy.”

For reference, the road stabilisation schemes included in the Highways PFI are at:

Westhill Lane, Yarmouth, Lower Road, Adgestone, Duver Road, St Helens, Gills Cliff Road, Castle Court, Leeson Road and Whitwell Road at Ventnor, the urban footpaths south of La Falaise car Park and the Winter Gardens also at Ventnor. There will be further stability projects at the Old Access Road at Blackgang and the Terrace at Chale.

Any views or opinions presented in the comments below are solely those of the author and do not represent those of OnTheWight.


  1. I am vehemently against the PFI method of carrying out any work, but I am now resigned to having it thrust on us (and paying for it into blue beyond). All I ask now is the that the work is done expeditiously with a good website showing us where the current work is, and where the well considered diversions are.

  2. PFI Deny Deny

    29.May.2012 8:43pm

    Spot the lie? I bet the local media don’t. Perhaps they can’t add up either.

    ‘Financed in the main through a government grant not a loan’

    And the bursaries must be a bad joke? Throw a few kids a couple of grand a year and that’ll make everything OK?

    Not with me it wont.

    Amazed the Chamber of Commerce are supportive. They hate the council.

    No mention of the plan going to central government for approval either. They seem to want people to believe it’s a done deal.

  3. Paul Miller

    29.May.2012 10:41pm

    “The PFI is financed in the main through a government grant – not a loan and therefore does not have to be repaid.”

    A bit cryptic to say the least. We have to define terms and terms like: “in the main” sound dodgy. For instance, does the grant require matched funding, for instance, which would “have to be repaid” in the sense of entailing economies elsewhere.

    I’m assuming this ‘grant’ merely supports the cost of applying for the loan itself (am I wrong?)

    [Giles would say anything to get this through, including making up numbers no one is supposed to verify, so his assurances can be discounted instantly.]

  4. Julia Hill

    30.May.2012 3:03am

    “Vinci will be required by the contract to minimise disruption and working overnight, when and where appropriate, will be a common feature of the Highways PFI.”

    So, let me get this straight, the company that say’s there will be minimal disruption at night to residents of Arctic road Cowes from their proposed asphalt plant will be required, by contract, to work at night. How, pray tell, do they propose getting asphalt to said roads without disrupting Cowes residents – for 25 years? Their noise report already says that night time movements would increase the noise above recommended levels and I understand fully loaded lorries need to travel in first gear up that hill.Not to mention the smell of hot asphalt going past the window on a summer’s night. I do hope the residents of Cowes have air-con because having the bedroom window open won’t be an option at this rate.

    So, the Council have agreed a contract to have their roads built by a company that doesn’t have a sensible plan to provide the asphalt for those roads, unless of course the Medina Asphalt plant is already a done deal that is! This council never ceases to amaze!

  5. I reckon this is also a project for the intelligencia of the VB namely Mr Starke and Playingthenumbers. Hopefully they will record the financial contributions – Government and Island – and give us, say, 6 monthly reports on its progress. Should make interesting reading.

  6. Tanja Rebel

    30.May.2012 8:08am

    Yes, all of this stinks! We are on the way to sign a deal which will be a huge risk take, will cost us millions more a year and will lead to a stinking asphalt plant along the beautiful river Medina.

    The PFI is not a done deal yet, there are a few more crucial months left and we should protest loudly. Regarding the asphalt plant, there is already one on the island and that should be enough. To build another one between a beautiful cycletrack and a sensitive river habitat so near to housing would be of the utmost stupidity.

    Lets fight this tooth and nail! After all, I thought we were supposed to work towards becoming an Eco-island?

    • Billy Pitt

      30.May.2012 9:34pm

      Eco Island – not cart track Island. We have an aging popuation so why are we wasting £millions on stupid cycle paths that ony a very few peope will ever use. None of the ‘right-on’ people seems to complain about that waste of money. All these ‘johnny come lately’ PFI knockers can always go back home to the mainland if they think the Island is going to be so terrible.

  7. greenfiremouse

    30.May.2012 8:49am

    Oh, what a surprise that it has turned out to be Vinci!
    Last week they were already cutting up trees on the site where the proposed asphalt plant is supposed to be. Who gives a damn about Planning procedures?
    So it’s not only a millstone around our necks for the next 25 years when the current traffic system will be preserved in aspic, but we will also suffer the pollution of an oversized asphalt plant on top of it…

    • Julia Hill

      30.May.2012 10:52am

      Greenfiremouse Please could you contact Wight Residents Against Asphalt regarding the tree cutting? This is a planning enforcement issue and needs to be pursued. Our email is

      • playingthenumbers

        30.May.2012 1:04pm

        Julia Hill, may I direct you to yesterday’s administrative court ruling by Mrs Justice Lang (she who ruled the IWC’s social care policy was unlawful).

        Her obiter dicta whilst passing judgement included “government renewable energy targets do not have ‘primacy’ over local conservation policies”. The story is on the BBC (Norfolk), Telegraph, & planning resource websites, but the full transcript isn’t available yet.

    • PFI Deny Deny

      30.May.2012 5:57pm

      The PFI boss of this charming firm was on Solent radio this morning. He slipped up by saying ‘WHEN’ the new tarmac plant is built instead of if.

      Check with the radio news people if you don’t believe me.

      Planning committee? Who needs one.

  8. So… is this the same company who resurfaced Horsebridge Hill within the last two months and forgot/didnt bother to prepare the existing surface. Within 4 weeks the surface is already breaking up. Who pays for this?

    • greenfiremouse

      30.May.2012 8:57am

      No, the company originally responsible for resurfacing Horsebridge Hill (and a variety of other roads) was Kiely Bros Birmingham. Then a local contractor was brought in (Dempsey) to try and amend the damage, to little effect.

  9. Lars Torders

    30.May.2012 9:05am

    So we now know who had the best envelope.

  10. No to PFI

    30.May.2012 9:22am

    Vinci, nice to see it goes to a French company! Good old I W Council muppet show at its best. Why do we vote for these useless people?

  11. The figures used do not make mathematical sense.
    The figure is called “a grant”, but as I understand it, this sum is spread over the 25 years ands will actually be deducted from the yearly grant given to the IWC by the governent,so in reality its not a grant at all. Then we, the taxpayers of of the Island still have to make our “contribution” each year of £8.3 million ( rising with any inflation) So how on earth does the Island benefit from this scheme, which even our deranged coaltion government have admitted is not value fdor money?

    • playingthenumbers

      30.May.2012 10:52am

      Exactement DaveQ, as my NBF the French would say.

      I used to work for a demagogue, the kind who used to preach doctrines he knew to be untrue to people he thought were idiots. Now it looks like I’m working for a foreign Marshal plan +, whilst right here on my doorstep, UNICEF are claiming the coalition’s cuts is having a ‘catastrophic’ effect on child poverty, reversing world beating advances made in previous years.

      Mind you it could be worse, if anyone is working full time on minimum wage, that 73% effective marginal tax rate you get, before VAT must convince you that the investment in roads must be coming at the right time – not. Heaven forbid you try a better yourself, earn twice as much eventually, have some kids, your EMT rate will go up to 83%. Let’s celebrate are selflessness, be proud of our roads which will lead so many other people to a better future. Plus ce change.

    • Billy Pitt

      30.May.2012 9:43pm

      As usual, a complete mis-representation of the facts. Why dont people who don’t understand the facts bother to find out the truth? I know, because it would undermine the rubbish they write here.

  12. Why dont all you PFI haters get a grip, you moan about the roads, yet you dont want them upgraded.

    Do something else with you time.

    • playingthenumbers

      30.May.2012 1:12pm

      Au contraire mon amie, Mandy. Moaning is a British pastime, peonage isn’t.

    • Well said Mandy. All these PFI haters on here don’t have a clue what they are talking about. The figures they give are utter nonsense. Typical is dozey old Dave Q who as usual is spouting rubbish.The PFI grant is not deducted from other grants the council gets.It is a whole load of extra money that the council does not have to pay back to the government.

      • Private Finance Initiative is not a grant. The money is not paid back to the Government. It is paid back, with interest, to the lender at a currently predicted rate of £8,300,000 per year. Further more, the lender can sell the loan on the open market. Out of this money, something like £3,500,000 will be spent on roads. The rest is paid to investors as interest.

        Further more, road infrastructure is fraught with unknowns, especially at a time when technology and the end of cheap oil means that transport will change radically. Therefore, variations to the contract (AKA, extra costs) are almost a certainty.

        The agreed repayments are already far in excess of the historical spend on roads. That is without variations to the contract. Further more, the PFI does not include all of the public domain infrastructure costs so there are still further costs that need to be picked up by the public purse.

        And you thought Dave Q was dozy!

      • Well you can add the current government to that list. How anybody can fall for this councils propaganda without doing any research themselves is beyond me

      • playingthenumbers

        30.May.2012 7:14pm

        I think you may have strayed over the line of accuracy. It has already been confirmed that the millions of pounds worth of assorted grants in the form of maintenance/capital funding blocks the council receives from central gov annually will be absorbed in to the PFI grant, (we wont be getting them, when we have PFI). To be fair, Stuart Love did insist that the PFI credit is worth more than the blocks currently received, (IWC Facebook – PFI LIVE 15/6/11). However by simply extrapolating the current revenue blocks by inflation/projected population growth etc, – £260m over 25yrs is not hard to arrive at, even if the DfT formula is more complicated.

        Moreover the council freely admit that the business case for the project was chronic neglect & underinvestment for years, they obviously spent the roads money on other stuff; unless you’re saying the IWC lied on their PFI application form. So did the council waste this money they shifted around the budgets, or was the need greater in departments other than highways? It can only be one or the other & I’m not sure you’ll get many admissions of waste.

        The PFI project is about committing to spend consistently more on roads than it did in the past, (arrest decline), yet it is losing a sizeable slice of regular revenue grant, as well as keeping 2% of the project value as contingency. Obviously it follows that in light of the funding cuts the council have had from Gov, £18m last year & may yet have more, depending on how events go, has meant that budgets in other council departments have been & will be more severely slashed, disproportionately so, to accommodate the commitment to the primacy of this financial obligation (debt) to Vinci.

        The IWC will lose control of flexibility in budgeting, something they have clearly relied upon in the past, leaving it ill-prepared to address the changing needs of residents without introducing rationing, tax rises or charges, maybe all three as well as the asset sales. This on an island with a CT already in the top 5% nationally, an expanding elderly population, with increased expectations in social care, wages 2/3 of the mainland, the biggest drop in earnings in living memory, a gov preparing for financial Armageddon, 16% working in flat-lining tourism just when Europe looks cheap again and so on – it looks like a recipe for disaster. The number of legal challenges brought against this council already as it gears up for PFI should act as warning of what is to come.

    • A good clue to the value of the PFI was the fact that when central government spending was cut, this PFI wasn’t.

  13. You don’t realise how pathetic you sound.

  14. Its a real shame you can’t see the good this will do for the Island.

    If you only knew what you were talking about.

  15. Well at least by giving Vinci the job, the IWC is doing their ‘bit’ to help prop up the euro.

  16. major issue

    30.May.2012 5:31pm

    I suggest the residents of Ccwes read the information on Asphalt plants and the Danger of Cancers caused by Asphalt.Then think is Councillor Giles the the best person to vote for in 2013.

  17. Green Goblin

    30.May.2012 6:15pm

    Well said Mandy, this PFI is the best thing to happen to the island in years. It is a grant and isnt repayable, it will create jobs, will bring investment to the island, improve every road, although the parent company VINCI is french, Ringway is an english company.

    When the goverment made spending reductions this PFI was reduced in value, the tarmac plant wouldnt be hazardous to health at all, all scaremongering. So much rubbish is written in here, always criticising.

    Why oh why do so many islanders love a good moan and groan about anything that involves change.

    For a change why not say well done for this investment in the island, others counties would cry out for such money.

    i truly think though if you asked the question, the majority of people fully support the pfi…..just all the whingers post on here

    • dear god..another one. No wonder this council got elected.

      Please do yourself a favour and have a look at what PFI really is rather than spout the councils propaganda…its not a grant and it does have to be paid for.

      Try reading this and learn at little

      • oh here is the key quote if you can’t be bothered to read it

        “In the current context of very low bond yields, the gap between the cost of conventional funding and PFI has widened even further: PFI costs the taxpayer twice as much. Hence the conclusion that PFI in its current form shouldn’t be used.”

        • sorry ..just shocked that people can so easily be misled

          another quote

          “The Daily Telegraph meanwhile used Freedom of Information requests to show that more than 900 schemes have been completed with a total capital value of £56bn – yet the amount the taxpayer will have to repay currently stands at £229bn due to accumulated interest.”

          we are being conned

    • playingthenumbers

      30.May.2012 8:30pm

      Those assertions Green Goblin as my funny old gran would say, are a load of old tom tit.

      The UK’s Health & Safety Executive, have a report, “Cancer risk following exposure to polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs): a meta-analysis.” Within this report they state, “The larger unit relative risk (URRs) in other industries, in particular asphalt and chimney sweeping, could not be due to chance”. The cancers they are talking about are lung & bladder.

      The British journal of industrial medicine have a report, “Cancer mortality in the asphalt industry: a ten year follow up of an occupational cohort.” – Significant increase in cancer

      Cemex, the building supplies company whose strapline includes ‘Building the Future’ even have a nice datasheet for their asphalt materials, from which comes “Long-term prolonged exposure to high levels of respirable crystalline silica, can lead to silicosis and ultimately an increased risk of developing lung cancer”.

      Secondly, I have come across precisely no one who thinks PFI is the best way to deal with the roads. Lots of other suggestions though, some sensible, some bordering on the politically extreme, like scapegoating some other section of society, most just advocate the status quo until things settle down – as you alluded to & I think I can agree with, maintain the status quo sounds most like the true voice of the IW.

    • The Parson

      31.May.2012 1:56am

      Just over a year ago we tried to buy about 5 tons of road planings from the council,but were told no we can’t have any of that material as it is classed as carsogenic(think it’s spelt that way),now this material has been lying around for about 10 years which makes it at least 15 years old,if this material is un useable because of it’s effects how can a tarmac plant so close to present/future habitation be ok.This fit’s in very well with the council saying there is no need for a enviromental study,just push it through.

  18. Finally….some positive points of view.

  19. Black Dog

    30.May.2012 8:05pm

    I fail to see why we need Vinci Concessions as well as Ringway. Clearly and as their name suggests, they are a concessions outfit i.e. running tolls on bridges. They appear to be a go-between for PFI contracts – Providing nothing to the cause.

    Extract from their website: “VINCI Concessions is Europe’s leading operator of transport infrastructure concessions (motorways, tunnels, bridges, car parks, airports and light rail systems) and a major player in the development of public-private partnerships (PPPs) within VINCI. Our acquisition of the ASF group in 2006 made VINCI Concessions the world’s biggest private operator of motorway concessions”. They also very kindly quote:

    ” Concessions
    Net sales: £37.1 million
    Workforce: 1,263″


    Could someone please tell me why are they part of our PFI contract, surely we have a very expensive PFI expert employed by the council???

    Ringway are a recognised road builder and should be one of many considered for the contract.

  20. Braveheart

    30.May.2012 9:10pm

    Although the following links have no direct connection to the PFI, they do have some bearing on the new proposed Asphalt Plant which will work in conjunction with the consequence of its receipt:-

  21. I have been told that Geoff Lumley said last night that he supported the PFI.If he is now in favour (I think he was previously against) and can see the benefits it will bring to the Island it seems strange that his sympathisers on here are not following his lead.

  22. Tanja Rebel

    30.May.2012 10:10pm

    So where are your counter arguments, Billy Pitt? Saying it is all rubbish is very easy. As for Eco-island versus cart track island: If we want to attract younger people to this island then good cycle links are essential. Older people can benefit as well – electric bikes are always an option.

    Forward is not always better, in fact some cart tracks and a bit more horse power would be welcome. Above all, if we want to become a real Eco-island we don’t plonk up asphalt plants or unsustainable industrial sized biomass plants along a beautiful river site. Instead we focus on tidal, solar or (where appropriate) wind power and use the asphalt plant that already exists. Common sense, me thinks…

  23. Tanja Rebel

    30.May.2012 10:22pm

    To Democrat: That is Geoff’s choice. However, having listened to him at the Cabinet Meeting his support was very tentative and he wanted to see safeguards in place where it would be possible along the way to opt out if things went wrong.

    By the sound of it Geoff was worried that it all would go wrong and he is right to be worried. PFI constitutes a huge risk take with tax payers’ money and moreover wastes a lot of it on profit for the companies involved. These things are not for free whatever the Council says… Moreover, the Highways PFI is obsolete as it still focuses on cars above all and the future lies in a different direction. Cycletracks and public transport should weigh equally heavy if not more.

    • Indeed it is his choice but it must be extremely upsetting to you that with Geoff backing the scheme pretty well all councillors appear to be in support.

    • change the record

      30.May.2012 10:50pm

      cycle tracks… again. Theres already 200 miles worth on the island, along with country lanes and bridle paths.
      Public transport needs an infrastructure to run, and unless you seriously propose building something new from scratch, which would cost ridiculous amounts far in exess of the apparent savings cancelling the PFI would generate, the road network is the only way, and needs serious upgrading. No-one can say the PFI is obsolete because it focuses on cars. There are 31,035,791 cars on the road in Britain, and that number is 2 years old… its risen by now. So with somewhere between 30-40million cars on the road in britain, I have no idea how you can claim a PFI is obsolete because it focuses on cars.

  24. I find it quite ironic that the Boy Blunder continues to remain conspicuous by the absence of comment from him. Historically Pugh would have something to say just about any and every thing.

    Could it be that he is waiting for divine intervention? or is it the infighting at Tory HQ on the Island pre-occupying him? or is it the fact that Bob B is running for Shanklin Town Councillor that is troubling him?

    He does spend a disproportionate amount of time on his notebook and Blackberry (even during council meetings) It is alleged that he is trying to CHILLAX by playing with ANGRY BIRDS!!!

    A leader without a cause is like a conductor without a B.U.S. (Broke Under Solent) Come on Pugh give us your take on PFI and PPP reassure us that Councillor Giles and Consultant Jay J are doing the right thing by shackling us to a 25 year contract and how you have insisted that the IOW is protected by a water tight and future-proof contract. Additionally, in the event of a problem (like our current one of melting roads) we have indemnities in place to further protect the Island. Oops I have just noticed that the price of Bacon has gone up!!!!

    • change the record

      30.May.2012 11:11pm

      perhaps he has better things to do than engage with idiots who slag him off.

      This is about highways, not pugh. We want good roads, not soundbites from the leader

      • Goodness me, I have clearly touched a nerve. THIS is all about leadership. Where does the buck stop if things go wrong (other than with islanders?) Strong and credible leadership is necessary and fewer DELEGATED DECISIONS (Why do the council debate trivial matters and yet delegate decisions that look to spend millions?) In my opinion Delegated Decisions attempt to move the responsibility away from Pugh (or the real leader Brown).

        If you believe that The Boy Blunder has better things to do than engage with idiots who slag him off, you are very sadly mistaken. I have watched and continue to watch Pugh during meetings and I can assure you he does spend a disproportional amount of time on his notebook showing total disrespect to his colleagues and members of the public in the gallery (I fail to see what is so important that it can not wait until after the meeting? or is he messaging his Conservative colleagues telling them how to vote or what question to ask next?). How are we to trust any decision whether it is the PFI contract or the PPP contract when the COUNCIL LEADER regularly and unashamedly demonstrates his total lack of interest?

        Fools Believe False Leaders and suffer by millions

        • change the record

          31.May.2012 7:23am

          if its about leadership, then talk about leadership. “The Boy Blunder” is not a respectful term, neither is stating that he is playing computer games in council meetings.

          Strike respect… try common good manners. Be polite about him and you might get somewhere. Have a dig at him and he will rightly ignore the moronic comments you have made about him. Theres no need for the snide comments you make when trying to get your point accross. It makes you look like an idiot.

          • Concerned

            31.May.2012 9:47am

            Oh Dear

            Ever ready with the defence of the indefensibly.

            Clearly your use of the term Idiot is a favoured one. Idiots are generally ill-informed (I am extremely well informed – The Boy Blunder is probably looking to identify me right now) I simply state facts. Can you confirm that Pugh does not spend time on his notebook during meetings both private and public?

            Perhaps you can tell us what is so important that can not wait until the end of a meeting? I would fully understand if there was a sick relative or child which would excuse leaving a Blackberry or Notebook ON but not constantly interacting with it? This shows a total disrespect to his colleagues and the public alike.

            Respect, in any walk of life, has to be earned and the Boy Blunder has not even come near to the mark of gaining respect. I know that lots of people comment on his Education, Work experience, Pugh Swearing in public, etc. I make no reference to that. I just want to see credible leadership. Unfortunately, The Boy Blunder can not offer us this as he is slave to his own limitations.

  25. Tanja Rebel

    30.May.2012 11:22pm

    Dear Change the Record,

    Okay, as yet we need roads for cars and we will for quite a while yet, so perhaps I should not have used the world obsolete just yet. However, the fact that there are still so many cars on the roads whilst we are facing an ecological crisis as well as reaching the peak oil stage is a clear sign that we are not moving with the times.

    The Highways PFI will be here for 25 years and a lot will change within those years. This is what I mean when I use the term obsolete. Inside ten years time we will have woken up to realise that we should have invested grand scale in efficient and affordable public transport as well as an effective, comprehensive, commutable cycle network. Better start now is my view…

    • change the record

      30.May.2012 11:46pm

      so now you can predict the future?

      neccesity is the mother of invention, and invention is the mother of neccessity. When oil runs out, it will be neccessary to invent something new. Until then it wont happen… unless someone invents something new which is significantly cheaper and more reliable than the car. That is extremely unlikely, and if it did happen, roads would still be needed, as a whole new infrastructure would be prohibitively expensive. Why start now? theres no neccessity. Thats not to say I disagree, simply that it wont happen until neccessity dictates

    • Braveheart

      31.May.2012 9:54am

      Tanja, here is a link to greener ways of building car engines:-

  26. Braveheart

    30.May.2012 11:38pm

  27. Braveheart

    30.May.2012 11:56pm

    • These council sheep who have jumped into the affray proclaiming support for PFI are no better than Flat Earthers who refuse to see the evidence before their eyes or creationists who believe the world is 40,000 years old despite massive evidence to the contrary.

  28. Tanja Rebel

    30.May.2012 11:56pm

    Dear Change the Record,

    I cannot predict the future, but I can see that oil is running out already now. Even if we find more, it is getting harder and harder to extract and we are resorting to more and more desperate measures. Oil is on the way out, it is as simple as that.

    Regardless of this, it is sad if necessity is the only driver of change. That means we are living reactively, not proactively. If we had listened to economists with a broad outlook like E.F. Schumacher (author of Small is Beautiful) in the seventies, we could have changed our ways already then and avoided the ecological crisis we are in now.

    However, it seems we are only willing to learn when it starts hitting our pockets and the rising oil prices are now hitting us right where it hurts. So I would say that the necessity to change is already here.

    • change the record

      31.May.2012 12:10am

      yet you say clearly “inside ten years time…”
      neither you nor I know how long oil will last.

      The neccessity to change might already be here, but the impetus is not. that impetus will be financial. money makes the world go round.

      • Wighty wight

        31.May.2012 12:45am

        Oil is a finite resource… Period. Argue as much as you like about the end of oil date but if we are to see thousands of future years, maybe hundreds of thousands of future years, possibly millions ….just what do you think you/we are leaving behind for those future generations?
        Already the last hundred years or so, alone, has depleted this resource and you/we are arrogant enough to think it is our generations resource to use up!
        Oil is unsustainable, fact. Do you hope that there will be just enough left to see you off the planet?
        Such arrogance towards the planets resources and future generations…

        Wighty wight

        • I would imagine it’s less than 100 years of oil left, we’ve passed peak production so that would mean less than 50% of oil left in the ground, we’ve been using for just over 100 tears, it will be unaffordable in less than that, so not long now

        • change the record

          31.May.2012 7:16am

          theres no arrogance here. I know full well that oil is running out. My point is that to change the current system, we need a bit more than some wishy washy environmentailsim and talk about new cycle paths. Money makes the world go round, simple as that. Make it financially inviable for people to use cars and they wont use them. Tell them that its good for the planet if they dont use them and most people will nod and agree, then get in their car to drive home.

          Personally I think its the height of arrogance to assume mankind will still be around in a few thousand or million years time. What do we leave future generations? does it matter? every generation has to make its own way, and frankly if we burn all the oil now, future generations will be forced to find alternatives. Perhaps hydrogen powered cars… but they WILL still need roads, as well as the over 200 miles of existing cycle track on the island. Come up with a reasonably costed alternative to cars and people will listen. Repeating over and over that we need cycle tracks isnt getting anyones attention because people simply wonder whats wrong with the 200 miles worth we have now, and why cant you ride a bike on the road. Of course some claim its too dangerous – rubbish. Take proper precautions and its no more dangerous than anything else. Or of course theres air quality… Again, rubbish. take personal responsibility and go buy a mask if it bothers you. either way, expecting the council to divert money from roads to cycle tracks just because you say so is ridiculous.

  29. peaceul_life

    31.May.2012 1:50am

    @Change the record…
    It’s a common misconception that we will simply technologically ‘invent’ our way out of this predicament to maintain the status quo of complex industial lifestyle.

    Here’s the rub….energy begets technology, not, the other way round, we have an extremely intercative and interdependent globalised trade, infrastructure, transportation, agricultural, pharmaceutical, communications, economical (etc etc etc, I could go on…..) systems, and all of it underpinned by oil.

    Of course, this feeds in to the PFI (infact it feed into everything).
    Economically the landscape will/is looking very different,it’s ok to ‘specualte’ with fractional reserve banking when the base load resource (oil) is paying dividends of a ratio around 200-1 on net energy (resource=more industrial activity=economy),indeed… finance now sits at around 20-1 fictional money to real money,all made pssible by oil extraction, now when that resource depletes….the so does the economy, the right time to shackle up to ANY 25 year contract you think?

    The PFI itself is nothing more that slight of hand that uses that fictional money, binary is merely ‘clicked’ from one screen to another, and voila……you just lost the very REAL community assets of roads to an external entity that will charge you the privalage of using what you already payed for and owned. All day to day business as usual, only this time we have a financial meltdown (remember that oil?) to contend with, so who knows what extras lay ahead.

    As far as seeing into the future, well yes…..kinda, using the maths…’s not only possible ,infact, ramifications of resource depletion has indeed been predictded for a long time…by a lot of people.

    No…this is not the time or long term deals of businees as usual,this is the time to pull it all back in the local context, fix the roads (for as long as people can afford fuel) by all means, but…do it with GOOD local firms, if the skill and plant capacity isn’t there initialy well that’s fine…that’s just an oppertunity for local jobs,ergo…create a community firm that CAN do the job,keep the money local and cyclical.

    Tanja is also correct in saying more investment in cycle tracks is needed too, they will exemplify and encourage the ethos of the new paradigm we’re heading into, becuase…let’s face it…………this one is a dead on it’s feet, it just hasn’t fallen over…….yet.

    If you reuire any links I’m happy to oblige.
    Many thanks.

    • change the record

      31.May.2012 7:34am

      god almighty. How can so many people willfully misunderstand the fact that oil is what we got now, and until it runs out its very likely nothing will change, however much good sense change makes. I dont dispute the environmental aspect (other than the need to cover half the countryside in tarmac so a few people can ride bikes – it wont encourage more people to do so, whatever you may say), but I do dispute that simply shouting about it will get you anywhere. Go talk to the council, put your point over, and provide some clear evidence to support what you say. Until then, Im perfectly happy with the existing cycle network and would like to see better roads because thats what we need right now. by all means talk about the future, but NOT at the expense of what needs to happen NOW.

  30. witchfinder general

    31.May.2012 7:22am

    Why do people keep rattling on about bicyles. If the roads are pothole free they can ride on those. Also if the lumps and bumps are gone I might be able to get the V8 up to full throttle without taking off, before I get stuck behind a nissan micra.

    Another thing you are all forgetting are trunk roads which are maintained by central government, in a couple of years time when the bridge is built we will have some. We need a big bridge now, not just for the traffic but somewhere for all the eco trolls to live under.

  31. Tanja Rebel

    31.May.2012 7:47am

    Dear Change the Record and Witchfinder,

    We need cyclepaths because that provides an incentive for people to bike in peace from traffic hazards, air pollution and noise pollution. It will also attract more cycle tourism and make it possible for the island to advertise itself even more as a cycle destination.

    Whatever you say, cycling on roads with the current mentality of driving is dangerous and moreover highly unpleasant. Change the Record, you talk of impetus, one such one would be to make cycling more pleasant for as many as possible. You also say money makes the world go round and that is sadly true. However, this money can be invested in various ways and if we start investing in truly green solutions now then that can generate more money, happier people as well as a healthier planet.

    Peaceful Life is so right when saying that we should use local firms and local skills as much as possible instead of giving our money away to foreign companies who don’t always have the best of the island at heart. And do look up Schumacher: Instead of large scale technological solutions he propagated for small scale humaneness where oil is viewed as precious capital and where mass production is replaced by production of the masses. Schumacher envisioned an economic system where quality is put before quantity and where we achieve maximum well-being with minimal consumption. I believe this is the way forward rather than large scale, money wasting, uglifying and polluting projects which don’t take into account that the world is changing.

    Change will come through necessity, but the transition will be so much smoother if we change our mindset now and start preparing for a whole new future.

    • change the record

      31.May.2012 8:36am

      you seem to think that saying it will make it happen. It wont. I cant put it any more simple than that.
      Personally speaking, i find pretty much all of your posts highly arrogant. You assume because you think it, others should too. The world dont work like that. People have different opinions and repeating yourself over and over will not change minds. Provide some well researched evidence as to how cycle tracks will encourage people rather than a blind faith that it will happen and I may concede the point. Has it happened elsewhere in the country? Have more cycle tracks genuinely put people onto bikes and out of their cars? Can you provide one iota of evidence for what you claim to be true, or do you think that people will simply give in and assume you are correct if you keep banging on about it?

    • Well said Tanja.
      I completely agree with what you say and really appreciate the effort and time you put in to speak some sense to our council.
      Really concerned about the comment that mentions that trees are already being cut down in the area of the proposed asphalt plant. Would be good to hear what the council have to say about that.

  32. Tanja Rebel

    31.May.2012 8:01am

    Oh and Change the record, all cyclepaths don’t need to be tarmac. Good hardened surfaces that are maintained will generally suffice. I am already talking to the Council at in principal every Council, Cabinet and most Scrutiny Meetings, but as yet to no avail as they are still living in the old mindset.

    Of course the roads need to be upkept, I don’t think anyone is disputing that. I drive as well, albeit I hope as intelligently as possible. With that I mean I bike as much as possible and try to avoid unnecessary short journeys. I also try to be considerate of cyclists on the road, but I seem to be in the minority there. Perhaps everybody who drives should get on a bike to see how it feels, that might change their attitude.

    But back to the roads: They can and should be repaired by using our own money – not loan or socalled “grant” money – and local firms. Maybe it won’t go as fast as with PFI, but then we won’t lose a lot of money on private profits for the PFI company. The money saved could be put into building up a sustainable infrastructure. This remains my firm conviction.

    We should not only prepare for a whole new future, we should be aware that we can create a better one as well.

    • Tanja, what has happened to your chums Steve Goodman and Mike Starke? They used to have lots of nonsense to spout on here about the PFI. Have they realised they have lost the argument or have they, like Geoff Lumley, suddenly accepted they were wrong and are now backing the PFI?

      • major issue

        31.May.2012 10:55am

        Democrat hopefully Messrs Goodman and Starke have moved on and will be concentrating their efforts on the Minister responsible for this lunatic P.F.I. it can still be stopped. why any sane Government would even consider this scheme I just do not understand.

      • Steve Goodman

        1.Jun.2012 4:57pm

        D: no need for us to say what PTN & others are already saying here. But thank you for the opportunity to keep this important issue live by pointing out that what you call nonsense in your world, we call well-documented serious concerns about the folly of paying far too much to get a job done properly. Our world is also inhabited by the likes of Parliament’s spending watchdogs, and politicians much against in opposition times (but u-turning once in power & presented with an opportunity to fiddle spending figures).

        As for our council choosing to ‘make an annual contribution'(our taxes)’which will be less than the sum it'(we)’currently pay to provide the services that will in future be provided through the PFI.’… our payments will actually be significantly higher than their drastically reduced spending that must have caused so many more problems needing to be rectified.

    • Ryde a Wight Swan

      31.May.2012 10:44am

      Perhaps if cyclists were a bit more consideate of the highway code we drivers would give them a bit more consideration. And as for the “build it and they will come” attitude to cyclepaths you should come and see a particular section of the A27 I drive every day in Portsmouth. Its a dual carriage way with a wide pavement adjacent. Portsmouth council have partitioned half the pavement, with coloured asphalt, as a cycle lane. But despite this being there, for some inexplicable reason 90% cyclists still seem to use the carrigeway. So cars have to jostle between themselve to make room when there is a perfectly good cyclepath just 1m to the left.

  33. It would be nice to see the pavements done at the same time with more drop curbs.
    Crossing in Wootton not able to use due to the pavement slanting towards the road making my wheelchair slide in to the road. many other places on the Island I have to go in the road as there is no drop kerbs one day it may happen

  34. greenfiremouse

    31.May.2012 9:56am

    Before this discussion gets too personal, I would just like you to appreciate what the time span of 25 years can actually mean with regard to technology.
    I can’t predict the future, but I can look back 25 years, which would put us in the year 1987.
    OK, there hasn’t been any huge technological progress on the traffic front since, but who could have predicted what has happened to communication, for instance? The progression of personal computers from simple word processors to powerful instruments of information, communication and social networking has just been breath-taking.
    What similar developments could mean for traffic, remains to be seen. It is quite a possibility that our future society may have had to develop schemes that integrate housing, work, food growing, medical supplies, education and social contacts all in the local environment. This could mean that there may be very little need for large amounts of traffic. Who knows?
    But anyway, in 2037, who wants to be stuck with a very expensive contract for maintaining outdated highways designed in 2012, while our requirements may have changed beyond recognition?
    That should be one of the main reasons to reject the PFI project.

  35. Tanja Rebel

    31.May.2012 11:22am

    Well said, Greenfiremouse! None of us can predict the future, but we know it is going to change substantially, perhaps even beyond recognition. If we take action now,we can even shape it in a more desirable direction, which in my view should be green and humane.

    Change the Record, arrogance is assuming we know it all, I don’t assume that. I cannot give you facts and figures regarding cycle tracks, but my experience tells me that where there are good, pleasant cycletracks many people bike. Being Dutch I have seen it with my own eyes there as well as in Sweden, where I lived for a long time and where cycletracks really got people on their bikes. The cyclepath from Cowes to Newport likewise has seen an increase in use, perhaps also partly due to the rise in oil prices. Speaking of necessity, this rise will force many people off the roads and it would be good if we could provide them with sensible alternatives.

    By the way, not everything needs to be weighed, measured and proven in this world – some values are beyond that. Of course we need the money, but above all we need to prioritise wisely.

  36. peaceul_life

    31.May.2012 11:34am


    I have talked to the council, I have put THE (not my) point across.

    With regard to evidence, I did say I’m happy to provide links, incendentally…this is nothing personal, it’s simply the way it is.
    An in-depth analysis. Current and precise.
    Taking the ideological philosophy out of the argument, it’s simply physics.
    Energy literacy, an erudite run through.
    You are of course correct in saying that change will be forced, sadly the ‘forcing’ was ignored some 40 years ago, and instead was replaced with hubris and greed. We also don’t get to run out of oil, it’s about NET energy (EROEI), as the oil gets more difficult to extract….then the ammount of energy used to extract it rises,essentially…using more to get less,humans will leave lots of oil in the ground.

    Agreed,some advances have been stunning, however….in other areas technology has left us in a staggeringly fragile predicament, take food for instance, years ago we had local farms producing local food to local people, far less energy consumption went into this robust model, this was then replaced with centralised ‘mega’ farms where the ‘carrot’ is profit, not only this..but….things were extended to global movement operating on a 3 day JIT (high yeild profit model) system,, so with all this tech..(we) developed an extremely precarious system that’s dependent on an ever depleting resource,when we step back and look at the whole…..the PFI looks like the least of our worries, however….just imagine how public funds SHOULD be used at a time when we need to relocalise in every aspect.
    Maybe our focus should be….’I’d rather ride my bike with food in my belly than sit and wonder how I’m going to eat my stationary car’

    ‘Banging on about it’ changetherecord…… an attempt at raising awareness,as we really are ..’all in this together’. Wether it’s said or not simply won’t negate the geologically physical facts that a lifestyle of overshoot leaves the piper wanting paid……..and no matter what you,nor I say………he will be paid.

    • change the record

      31.May.2012 12:43pm

      well i asked for evidence that creating more cycle paths would actually get people out of cars and onto bikes…

      Oil will run out. Thats blatently obvious. When it does, things will change. They wont change before then because its not neccessary. There is nothing forcing anyone to change.

      Where is the evidence that cyclepaths actually work in this country? Other countries have other mentalities. To get British people out of cars and onto bikes will be a struggle. A couple of cycle tracks will not make it happen.

      As for arrogance, TR:

      Definition of ARROGANCE

      : an attitude of superiority manifested in an overbearing manner or in presumptuous claims or assumptions

      I would definitely say that you seem to think your ideas are superior, and definitely manifest in an overbearing manner, ie repitition with no supporting evidence or recognition that others opinions may be equally valid. Also, you presume that others should share your views simply because you think you’re right and assume everyone with an opposing viewpoint is wrong.

      I think that fits the definition perfectly… Now, can you back up what you say about cycle paths with some firm evidence instead of your own ‘experience’ which seems to be limited to what you think. You say “I have seen it with my own eyes” – well unless you personally sat and watched cycle paths you cant have done. So prove it with numbers. If 10 people rode bikes, then a cycle track was introduced and 100 people then rode bikes, that would support what you say. Where are the numbers? They must exist… but I suspect they wouldnt support your argument so you refuse to acknowledge their existence.

  37. Tanja Rebel

    31.May.2012 11:35am

    Dear Democrat,

    My “chums” Mike and Steve do not spout out nonsense. On the contrary, they are highly informed on the topic. They are not wishy-washy opportunists and stand just as firm as always. However, sometimes silence speaks more than words…

    By the way, I am not implying here that Geoff Lumley is an opportunist. He normally stands firm too and I don’t know the reason why he has changed his mind in this case. I do know, however, that he is highly dubious as to how it will go and so he should be.

  38. Spending money to extend the existing road system is entirely irrational when the requirements are about to change dramatically and in an unpredictable way.

    In the next ten years autonomously driven cars will start becoming the norm.

    > Because it is technically practical.
    > Because you don’t have to park it.
    > It is cheap to hire because there is no driver to pay.
    > Because an increasingly elderly population can be re-enfranchised by them.
    > Because hiring a self drive from your phone is cheaper and more convenient than owning a car.
    > Because you can hire a vehicle appropriate to your immediate need – anything from a two seater runabout to a flat-bed truck.

    Current car ownership levels are most likely to plummet. I, for one, will be glad to get rid of the bother of owning a machine that I only use a couple of times a week.

    I may take up motor racing though, just for the old-fashioned fun of being behind the wheel.

    • Ryde a Wight Swan

      31.May.2012 1:05pm

      Sorry but what planet are you on Bigears? technically preactical is a million miles away from economically/socially practical. Just face it rightly or wrongly you will not get people out of their own personal cars. Look at emerging economies like China, everyone had a bike and cycled to work, now they have/want cars and sit for hours on end in traffic jams. Will they go back to bikes? no of course they wont.

      • Really? Thanks for putting me right. By the way, you may need to mention this to one or two companies that are also betting that I am right. Among them BMW, Google, Microsoft, VW, Volvo.

        No one will tell you to get out of your car. It will be the practical thing to do. As for technically practical, it’s already a done deal.

    • Sally Perry

      31.May.2012 1:57pm

      So long as this doesn’t happen …

      Scene from Total Recall (not work safe)

  39. Tanja Rebel

    31.May.2012 1:57pm

    Dear Change the Record,

    Your way of debating is interesting. I will not call you arrogant, for I do not know you and you are hiding behind a pseudonym – as so many do who choose to target others by their name. However, may I point out that your tone comes across as somewhat arrogant itself?

    I do not regard my ideas as “superior”. Moreover, many of them are not my ideas, they come from others who have thought long and deep about these issues. That is not to say their ideas are superior either, it is not about that here. All of this is about awareness:

    How aware do we want to be? Do we want cyclepaths for the numbers or do we want them because it is softer on nature and better for our life style? Quantity versus quality, the age-old conflict, although of course both can go hand in hand and generally will do. When one sheep is over the dam the rest follow.

    As for the evidence you constantly crave, I have freely admitted that I don’t have any numbers. I am not concerned with numbers, you can look them up yourself if you like them so much. However, I did tell you that the numbers on the Cowes cyclepath have increased, which is positive in itself. As for other countries versus this country, human nature is pretty similar everywhere: Make things more comfortable and pleasant and the numbers will come. Logic decrees that will be so here as well.

    Finally, please stop repeating your endless demands for evidence or go look it up yourself. You now have some excellent links provided by Peaceful Life to delve into. There you can find as much evidence as you like whilst the rest of us just want to get on and make this world a better, cleaner and more beautiful place – regardless of numbers, figures or money ranting.

    A world with less pollution, more natural habitats, more cyclepaths and localised food production is a so much more attractive world to live in, even if it would cost us more. Fact is, quality costs, but it is worth it – some values are eternal, like fresh air, clean water, beauty and silence. So lets just do it.

  40. peaceul_life

    31.May.2012 2:02pm


    I think you’re missing the point here my friend.
    It’s no longer about what’s wanted,it’s about what’s needed.

    Read the content of those links I provided, oil will not run out, humans ability to extract it.. in such volumes… to sustain such numbers will run out.

    The Chinese will be back on their bikes when their bubble bursts too.

  41. playingthenumbers

    31.May.2012 2:52pm

    PFI lovers, I don’t share your aspiration to change anyone’s mind on PFI, you have obviously been (bought &) sold on the idea. However, I would appreciate it if you could drill down your arguments for the project with some detail, rather than just restating how great it is & that there is no viable alternative. Personally like many other readers of VB I suppose would like a little fact, so at least it appears we’re on the same page.

    Eliminating the ideological for a moment & sticking to the empirical, we know several things.

    A) The IWC council receives as part of the central gov formula for grant assistance, awards of non-ring fenced maintenance & integrated transport funding blocks, which according to the letter from the DFT, dated 14th December 2011 was worth to the council £3.178m & £1.114m respectively. Around 50% of the proposed IWC contribution towards the project.

    B) Future highways maintenance & capital grants will be absorbed in to the PFI credits, resulting in a loss of revenue income. The gov won’t double fund the roads.

    C) The IWC is making an annual commitment of £9m, including project team costs (plus inflation & contingency) from it’s revenue budget as its contribution towards the scheme.

    D) The IWC has had a £17m funding cut already, which resulted in 600 redundancies.

    E) The PFI application was based on there never being enough money to undertake the remedial work needed to get the roads up to scratch or replace the salt air damaged lights, etc.

    F) The public transport subsidy was underfunded by £1m

    G) The council never spent anything like the £9m per year on roads historically, including grass cutting & cycle paths, obviously as the roads wouldn’t have deteriorated so badly if they had.

    H) The council historically used non-ring fenced highways money to shore up deficits in other departments.

    The glaringly obvious question is how can the council now afford £9m a year when it couldn’t in the past? Especially as it has the triple whammy of loss of an element of it’s non-ring fenced revenue support grant, across the board funding cuts & an underfunded transport subsidy. Oh & a decreased taxation base due to a rise in the unemployed. Does the council have a non disclosed money making scheme, or will additional charges be introduced, will taxes be raised or rationing extended (see cuts to social care provision, bus passes etc)? Or maybe a combination.

    Secondly, where is the consultation on the I disruption that the works will cause? You cannot make an omelette without breaking eggs, so there is bound to be road closures, diversions etc. Do you think the fee paying public should know in advance so that the can prepare? What impact will there be on tourism, business trade & just general getting about?

    What contingencies exist to protect other council departments’ budgets, should an unknown-unknown occur? For example a rise in the social care costs or a future gov deciding to change the revenue assistance funding formula?

    Finally, the additional jobs, are they being counted over the contract term or just the initial 7yrs of plenty?

  42. peaceul_life

    31.May.2012 3:46pm

    Has anyone actually bothered to look at the lineage of Vinci, and who actually owns it?

    Have a look, first click is Vivendi,then see where it takes you.

    ps…the ‘critisism’ on the first page is worth a glance.

  43. A fullpage ‘add’ from Vicci in the CP today which laughingly states the £260MILLION investment is a grant not a loan and in the very next statement says the council will have to pay £7million year back…..How can they just be allowed to continue this lie…itseither a grant ( which it isn’t) or a loan (which it is)

    Surely even the most simpleton Tory can see this is all a spin and we are signing away £7million (+interest) a year that this council has never spent on roads which will be paid for by us…the tax payer.

    • The Parson

      2.Jun.2012 6:34pm


      • yes they have £7million a year less to look forward too

        Read that stupid full page add in The CP on Friday from Vicci. They state that it is not a loan and there is nothing to repay…a paragraph later they say it will cost the council £7million a year + interest…….an idiot couldn’t make this up

  44. The 7million is the Councils contribution towards this PFI… you not understand that?

    • The Parson

      2.Jun.2012 6:24pm

      Mandy + the other PFI lovers, one day you will catch on to the lies from the council,7 million is the lowest estimate banded by them or it could be 8 or 9 million they can’t seem to make up their minds. As an ex-council employee they have never spent 7 million on the roads in one year,if they had the roads would not be in the condition they are now. Take the highest ammount quoted,the council has to pay each year, 9 million over 25 years equals about £225 million add inflation and intrest over those 25 years and you end up with about £230 million,these are facts in black and white which even the council ,if they could be truthfull, will confirm as correct. As has been said many times before,if the council didn’t have the money before where do you think they will find it now,it will be nice to have your answer to this problem of where this money will be found

    • clearly you don’t Mandy…where does the 7 million come from..its not a gift….and if it is a grant ..why does the council have to pay £7 million a year back…

      You really need to take a bit more time researching things before you sheeplike cow to this council

  45. Buried at the bottom of p.33 in this week’s CP is a small article headed “Highways PFI company set to be approved”. It does not appear on the CP website.

    The IoW Council is calling an extraordinary meeting on August 22nd asking the full council to approve a Cabinet recommendation to appoint VINCI Concessionaires as the contractor for the PFI on Island Roads. the contract will last 25 years, funded by a £260 million government grant and a £7 million contribution from Island community charge taxpayers.

    One would have though that such a major decision on the biggest engineering project ever undertaken on the Island” (CP’s own words) would have been headline news. Perhaps the Council spin-doctors took the opportunity of the Queen’s visit as “a good time to bury bad news”.

    One notes the coincidence of:
    * the timing of the Extraordinary meeting prior to a decision from the Secretary of State on an environmental impact investigation of the proposed Medina asphalt plant,

    * the report buried at the bottom of p.21 (ibid.) that Pugh will announce his decision on cutting the size of the Cabinet at the end of August

    * the rumours that certain members of the ruling cabal, including “delegated decision-makers” will not stand in the next local election. In other walks of life this strategy is called “Take the money and Run!”

    Make a note of the names and remember them on Thursday 2 May 2013.

    • Steve Goodman

      27.Jul.2012 12:41pm

      Not buried at all in the latest Private Eye (1319) is the lead item in on why taxpayers are being ripped off by having to pay for the “totally discredited” (George Osbourne!) use of PFI scams like the council’s preferred choice of road maintenance.
      (Their previous choice being to drasticly reduce road maintenance spending, as reported by VB, and now to spend lots more just before the PFI contractors are due to take responsibility. And if they fail to deliver like current contractors, we must wonder what if anything the council will do about it. )

      Repetition, but relevant.

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