Cllr Ian Ward, the cabinet member at Isle of Wight council for transport and infrastructure, and Sandown South councillor, has issued a retraction to the claims he made on Thursday that the freehold for The Ocean Hotel and King’s House had been sold.
It turns out that the freehold for the derelict site has not been sold – although negotiations are still ongoing, we are told.
“Spell check auto-correct” error
Cllr Ward is claiming that an spell check auto-correct in the email from a senior council officer to him about the issue resulted in the meaning of the sentence changing. Instead of the word ‘complicated’ the email sent to Cllr Ward used the word ‘completed’.
News OnTheWight did write to Cllr Ward before publishing our article yesterday, asking for verification that the sale has been completed, but Cllr Ward failed to reply. Even though he has issued this retraction on his Facebook page, and he knew we were writing an article about the sale, he still hasn’t had the good grace to reply.
I am sorry everybody, but my post last night saying that Ocean Hotel had been sold was premature.
However, it was the news I was expecting to receive, but the negotiations are ongoing. To say that I am disappointed and embarrassed is an understatement.
The information I was given had a typo that changed the nature of the message. We have all experienced the computer changing the word you intend to type into something else.
I have received an apology from a senior council officer which is below and I thank him for that.
Hopefully, the sale will be completed soon.
Dear Cllr Ward,
Please accept the local planning authority’s apologies for the wording error that has caused confusion.
This error was due to an auto-correct spell check that changed a single occurrence of the word ‘complicated’ to ‘completed’ within an officers email to the Town Council.
This has subsequently been corrected and confirmed that the sale process is ongoing but not yet completed.
Image: © Colin Midmore