Tuesday, January 29, 2008


THE worst financially-run council in the country today gave £250,000 to the Harbarrowboy as a reward for failure.

(You couldn't make this up, eds)

Liverpool city council Chief Executive Colin CoverUp gave the go-ahead for the huge pay-off to the barrowboy who has spent the last five months on the sick and on full-pay at his hacienda in Spain.

His departure is due to be officially announced on Thursday - but will be front page in the Daily Post tomorrow.

Meanwhile, the Audit Commission today named Liverpool as the worst financially-managed local authority in England.

The city council is now at least £29million in the red after failing to properly budget for Liverpool, Capital of Culture 2008 - which was partly chief executive Jason Harborow's responsibility.

Jase went on the sick in September after cocking up Liverpool's world-famous Mathew Street Festival and forcing its cancellation.

Since then, Fireman Bradley has got into big trouble with the Standards Board for trying to lure former Events chief Lee Forde into a 'Peroni Plot' to oust the hated Jase.

Amazingly, Jase's mega pay-off of council taxpayers money does not include a 'gagging clause' preventing him from speaking out in the future.

Which has only increased speculation amongst The Tonys, that chief exec Hilton and his sidekick, the smiling assassin Hasitall (whose 'reputation' for financial management is now irretrievably destroyed) have deliberately left the way open for Jase to try and kill-off Bradley.

(What goes around, comes around, eds)

Firstly, Harbarrowboy could sell his story to the News of the Screws for millions (just a joke - but he could sell it to the Daily Post for a Sayers pastie, eds).

Secondly, Jase could also now join Joe Anderson and submit a formal complaint to the Standards Board about Bradley.

This time Bradley would be accused of bullying Jase and undermining his position by sending an email to Hilton demanding Jase's head on a plate.

Looks like the lazy Hilton and incompetent Hasitall have therefore decided to cut their losses with Bradley and have teed it up for Jase to have a go back.

Meanwhile we can exclusively reveal details of the joint statement issued by Our Lord Redmond and CoverUp to mark Jase's departure for a life of ice-cream cones back at the hacienda.

It goes something like this:

"Jase has made an invaluable contribution to the success of Capital of Culture, blah-blah, he has been instrumental in re-building Liverpool's reputation nationally and internationally, blah-blah, we couldn't have done it without his efforts, blah blah, effective and competent leadership skills, blah-blah, thanks to Jase we have now moved into delivery phase, blah-blah, no need for Jase anymore now that we have Our Lord in charge, blah-blah, wish Jase well in future ventures, blah-blah, sorry about dodgy ticker, blah-blah, city always be grateful for everything that he has done, blah-blah, lots of ice cream and feet-up now, blah-blah, ta-ra matey, blah-blah-hope you knife Bradley on way out, blah-blah".

In other words, Harborow was an overpaid used car salesman who was promoted way out of his depth and tried to bullshit his way through the Culture Company, banking on the Government coming to his rescue in the end and baling him out, but then he cocked up Mathew Street and it all went pear-shaped so publicly, that he had to go.


More follows soon....

Thursday, January 24, 2008


Fireman Bradley has been forced to back down in his row with the Daily Post over their reporting of his secret meeting with Lee Forde.
By throwing in the towel, the ‘bang-to-rights’ fireman has virtually admitted: “I lied.”
Bradley told a meeting of Liverpool city council on December 12th that he had complained both to the editor of the Daily Post and the Press Complaints Commission over coverage of his extraordinary meeting with Mr Forde.
His Lib Dem colleagues gave him a standing ovation after an emotional tirade which conjured up visions of motherhood, apple pie and schoolboy footie teams.
But, we can now exclusively reveal, the fibbing fireman appears to have suffered some short term memory loss during his speech.
This is what he told the city council: “I have made a complaint to the Press Complaints Commission and the editor. If a retraction is not forth-coming, I will take it further.”
In fact, Councillor Bradley has not made a complaint to the PCC.
They have no record at all of any complaint from the fireman.
A spokesman for the PCC added: “The last complaint about the Liverpool Daily Post was in May 2007 – and that was nothing to do with councillors. We have had no complaint from Councillor Warren Bradley.”
Perhaps this was yet another porky that Bradley has told to try and save his neck?
But why does any of this matter? (Just wondering that? eds)
Because Bradley now appears to have accepted that he lied to the Daily Post when they first asked him about his secret rendezvous with Lee Forde (who he had hung out to dry over Mathew Street two days earlier.)
Let us recap.
When contacted by the Daily Post about the cloak and dagger meeting Bradley, as usual, blurted out the first thing that came into his head. He denied ever meeting Mr Forde.
The Daily Post has helpfully explained what happened:
Cllr Bradley was asked by our reporter about his meeting with Mr Forde, and replied: "Which meeting?"
Our reporter then told him that he was referring to a meeting at Cllr Bradley’s home on November 18. Cllr Bradley’s unambiguous response was: "I never had a meeting with him."’
Quite properly, the Daily Post reported that Bradley had at first denied the meeting. This was Lie Number 1.
The fireman only admitted the meeting had taken place later, when confronted with the email evidence and Mr Forde’s own sworn testimony.
Hot-headed Bradley, in a desperate attempt to then try and silence the Post, fired off two letters to the Editor threatening him with the Press Complaints Commission.
In a scene fresh out of Monty Python, Bradley found himself issuing a denial that he had issued a denial.
(It really doesn’t get much better than this, does it? You couldn’t make it up! eds)
Bradley’s PCC threat, we now learn, was totally bogus.
He has made no such complaint.
He daren’t - because he would lose and be left swinging in the wind.
And he committed a fourth lie by misleading the council that he had already submitted a complaint. When he hadn’t.
Perhaps someone should complain to the Standards Board?
What all this means is that Bradley now accepts that he lied to the DPost when he denied secretly meeting Mr Forde.
We shall return to Lies No 2 and 3…

Wednesday, January 16, 2008


By Jove! It's me Sir Diddy, here to celebrate with you.

Today, to mark this historic occasion, instead of my usual frivolity, I offer you a serious address, no not me house in Aigburth “Stillgrabbin” I’ve flogged that, although it still hurts that I couldn’t get at that 50pence piece that fell behind the old boiler, well Lady Diddy is hard to shift after a hard day at the factory knotting sausages.

Here Ladies and Cheltenham, on what should have been a special day for me, had I not been forced to retire on wealth grounds, is my speech to open the Capital of Custard.2008.
They wouldn’t let me make it on the night, even though it was though my glorious leadership that we won it.

Instead, the crowd got a few ramblings from the Anaemic Mermaid herself, Phyllis Redmond, the man who turned the custard company around, so they couldn’t see that he’d done nothing for five years.

“We did it,” he proclaimed!

Through a mouth that looks like somebody sat on a pasty.

“It’s like a scouse wedding!” So you’re all condemned to years of fighting and misery trying to pay for it.

What an inspiration!

Had I still been at the helm this is what you would have got at the Sir Diddy Arena (as it should have been called)
By Jove Missus, We did it!!!! It’s been like a scouse wedding here…..(hang on cut that bit Lady Diddy)

Yes, by Jove, Capital of Custard 2008.

Can you all see me at the back? What do you mean you can’t see me at the front? Can somebody get me a bigger box?
Welcome to Liverpool, the year in which Liverpool itself is the show!

After five years of the Custard Company using every opportunity to make a show of us, it has arrived at last. Here we are in a giant shed in the docks. Yes I know many of you have wanted to see me in the dock for a long time.

Did you all go on Friday?

What a spectacle it was on the steps of St David’s Hall. It left the crowd wanting more, you could here thousands of voices winding back down Lime Street saying over and over again “Is Da F**kin it?”

Nearly three million quid spent on that box of Bengo matches and the three rockets trading standards confiscated in November. Thirty-five minutes of quality entertainment and Pete Price.

Unfortunately the planned opening choral piece from the Grotty Cash Asbo Ensemble, singing my very own theme song, “Pick a pocket or two” had to be postponed when they were all arrested during rehearsals.

I have enlisted the help of renowned Liverpool lawyer and pothole expert, my old sparing partner, Sir Rex of the Hesperus to get the choir released. As you know, I will do anything for a tenor.
Did all enjoy the aerial artistes? That was a mistake you know.

Young Clara MeCogloose was showing Jasper Hottlebottle a sketched out proposal to have a Toxteth Riots sequence on the steps outside the hall, the custard company’s idea of how to engage communities, and Hottlebottle said could you do it with Adobe Acrobat.

So MeCogloose, who is a bit daft in one ear, promptly rushed off looking for some dozy acrobats. Well ladies and gentlemen the idea of the aerial acrobats clearly captured the imagination of the people of the city.

I was touched by the hundreds of requests by people asking to see me suspended from a rope as the main feature for the grand opening.

Unfortunately I suffer from Vertigo with Sagittarius, the Robbing Archer on the cusp. That’s why I can only go to grade 6 Cuban heels. Yes missus, otherwise I get Diddy Spells!
We have a spectacular show for you tonight!

Those of you who know me know that I am a great supporter of our wonderful Liverpool Phil. No not pasty face Redmond! The Philharmonic!

I understand that Arriva have given one of their finest conductors the night off to be here with us.

What’s his name again? Petroleum Jellyco..who? Vascular….Verysilly….Potato? I can’t read this… thought you had spell checked! Is it Raphael Benetton ? What happened to the other fella…Simon Throttle?

Anyway, they’ll be knocking out a few numbers later, including, from the Lib-Dem Book of Patriotic Songs, Land of Hopeless Storey and Rule Blog Ban Ya, along with old favourites, The Plight of the Bumbler Bradley and Amazing Gross Misconduct.
Later for the kids and the Leader, we have some cartoons. The Bugs Bunny Men, Pete Wylie Coyote, Sonia the Hedgehog, MacElhinney the Pooh (that’s a euphemism) The Wombats of Wimbledon, Foghorn Leggarty with his Rooster for Mayor campaign and of course the one and only Pingu Starr from The Arctic Monkees. He’ll be performing in his new singlet again plus the classic hit, “What would you do if I once sang in tune”

Pingu will be signing copies of his new release at the Arena later this evening and all next week in the Pound Shop on Breck Road. I hear Frankies Gone to Holly Oaks so they wont be here.
And despite attempts by a local politician to prevent Farm products being brought in to the Arena, following his experiences of foot in mouth, it has been agreed he will hide in the Ladies when they come on stage to perform their renowned anthrax, er anthem, “All the money’s gone”
There’s more, Ladies and gentlemen, by Jove an authentic voice of Liverpool youth, it says here, then he must have accidentally slipped by the Custard Company to be on stage here tonight, unless he’s the son of one of them, RudeVanWinkle will be performing his rap tribute to Liverpool 08…. here’s a short taster. Riuven is it?
“ Liverpool, it’s 08
you gonna pay for it mate
cos the guys with the purse
been nothin’ but a curse
now it’s here
and the beer
is sellin’ at a rate
that I cant afford a drink,
what I got to celebrate?

You had five years bro,
to plan and you fail
Wasting money you aint got,
you should be in Walton gaol
What you’ve done to the people,
will be done to you I hope
When you’re in the prison shower,
bendin’ down for da soap”

By Jove, Missus, cover the vicars ears, that brings tears to your eyes!

A very Rude Van Winkle.
Finally to say to you all, whatever this bunch of rogues and halfwits supposed to have been leading this have or have not done over the last five years, the hard working staff and ordinary decent Liverpool people involved at the front line of all this have been doing their best to make it a meaningful year beyond the earnings and egos of the incompetent bunch of self serving, self important, careerist money grabbing opportunists trying to claim the credit….well imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, so thank you.

Many, if not most, of the events and highlights would have happened anyway but at least this year you might pop along to them and even enjoy them.

If you can get something out of it wonderful, personally, I can’t. all the big money has gone so I’m off back to my new adopted home away from Grotty Cash and back to Mirth of Tydfil in Wales.

Liverpool I left you and I always let you down.
So c’mon Liverpool, get down with D.Diddy and let’s party….sorry special free invitation only to Malmaisson.

No Scousers.
Yakkie Da Everybody Yakkie Da! Wednesday, January 16, 2008 2:29:00 AM

Sunday, January 13, 2008


'POWER TO THE PEOPLE' was the Lennon song which closed the Arena show on Saturday night.

Perhaps someone was encouraging the people of the city to rise up in Revolution (another Beatles song which got an airing, eds) to overthrow the city father's who have wasted millions of pounds of the people's money?

Or perhaps not, eh?

The £50-a-ticket, £15-a-programme Arena show for 10,000 people was ten times better than Friday's so-called People's Launch of Liverpool Capital of Culture 2008, (which attracted 35,000 according to the police. And to which the Echo has added another 15,000, for some reason best known to the Editor, eds).

Unlike Friday, the Arena show engaged people and included them, even if the people were, largely, those who could afford it, the great and the good, the insiders, the bullshitters and the
usual suspects.

Ringo's new single was still an utter embarrassment (although he was refreshingly direct and honest in his pre-match press conference, eds).

The Farm brought real life, energy and enthusiasm to proceedings - "It's Saturday night, get up will ya" - the audience were ordered, and dutifully obeyed.

Connie Lush belted out a couple of numbers with pizzaz. The Christians were good too.

The acrobats were hardly Cirque Du Soleil, but were absolutely fine.

And Pete Wylie was, well.... Pete Wylie. (Although irritatingly, we have been singing Heart as Big as Liverpool all day, eds)

The undoubted stars of the show, however, were the Phil, who were absolutely stunning throughout.

Trapped in their Celebrity Squares, they showed consummate professionalism in coping with all the hiccups, pregnant pauses and fluffed beginnings.

The suitably dynamic Vasily Petrenko had total control and was marginally even more impressive than the live-wire signers at the side of the stage.

So well done to the Phil.

The other Phil - Our Lord - wandered on stage at the end to grab his share of the limelight and burnish his ego.

There was absolutely no need for his appearance, but appear he did.

Apart from shouting "We did it" (exactly what has been your precise contribution, Redmond? Aside from hogging headlines in the Echo with stories that never happen and using 2008 as the perfect antidote to the boredom and mid-life ennui caused by your multi-millionaire lifestyle, 15 cars and 35-acre home in Tarporley? eds) Redmond lounged about on stage, mouthed total gibberish (get a speech writer for your Mayoral bid, eds) and introduced his mates.

Fireman Bradley looked on disconsolately.

The Arena show had no cohesive narrative whatsoever, was spectacularly disjointed at times, didn't pay real justice to the Liverpool Irish connection, the Chinese community or the war years; treated the 100 children like serfs (why weren't they allowed on stage for 'All Together Now'? eds) and failed to showcase the full range and diversity of Liverpool's Culture.

But as an earlier correspondent noted, the show was 'alright'. It wasn't a disaster. And it engaged the audience.

It was not mind-bogglingly spectacular, breathtaking or world-beating.

But it was ok.

And after years of CoC cock-ups, mistakes and blunders from the half-wits in charge, just being OK it seems, will now do.

Saturday, January 12, 2008


OUR exclusive picture reveals Jason Harborow, Chief Executive of the Liverpool Culture Company (and currently on sick leave apparently, eds) carousing with Colin Hilton, Chief Eecutive of Liverpool city council, which is in negotiations with solicitors to pay-off the Harbarrowboy with £250,000 of council taxpayers money.
The happy couple were snapped by one of our supporters at last night's after-show party at the Empire to celebrate the launch of Liverpool, Capital of Culture, 2008.
(We apologise for the poor quality - but would also like to unreservedly praise our brave and intrepid cameraman for having the bottle to snatch these two in the act, eds)
Both men laughed and joked as they downed the free beer and wine which flowed (they had to pay for spirits at the bar so they opted for the free stuff instead, eds)
The Harbarrowboy also spent some time locked in conversation with the smiling assassin Hasitall (Mr Phil Halsall, Executive Director) who controls the city council's purse strings and has so far allowed the council to chalk up £29 million of debts, mainly because of Jason's incompetence.
Who invited Jase is not clear. Who allowed him into the party is also not clear. But he obviously appears, to coin a phrase, to have "friends in high places."
His presence has already caused minor ructions, however.
(Thank Christ someone at least understands what is proper behaviour and what is totally improper behaviour, eds)
Councillor Marilyn Fielding, who has a deserved reputation as the rottweiller McElhinney's tame poodle, has surprisingly objected in the strongest possible terms and has emailed her Lib Dem colleague's with a tirade against the Harbarrowboy, demanding heads should roll because of his presence.
So she is obviously not completely beyond redemption.
But nothing of course will happen and CoverUp will no doubt mumble the usual bureacratic bollocks to any councillors who attempts to challenge both his personal and professional behaviour, integrity and honesty.


Readers are invited to supply the best caption to our exclusive photo....

Friday, January 11, 2008

IS THAT IT........?

WE went with high hopes - but left with huge disappointment.
Tonight's opening was typical of the Culture Company's top down approach.
A massive crowd turned up expecting a great show.
But none of us were engaged.
There was no singalong to any recognisable Liverpool 'anthem'.
No dancing. No terrace chants. No humour.
No emotional engagement with what is being done in our name, with our money, in our city.
Instead we were presented with a generally uninspiring, unfocussed, unintelligible series of set piece scenes.
It was cold and flat and, sadly, a bit dull.
It has also cost the city a fortune.
Ringo's appearance was a cynical attempt to cash in on the year - and promote his new single. Incredibly, the unknown MC told us, without a trace of Scouse irony, that Ringo's single was "on sale on Monday."
People in the crowd shuffled their feet with embarrassment.
As the patient and passive spectators were showered with confetti, one wag near us commented loudly: "That's council taxpayer's money."
The sound was crap, the fireworks flat and the music, too often, a lifeless thrash.
St George's Hall, as ever, looked wonderful.
People started leaving after 30 minutes.
By the end, most of us were dying to get off to the pub and drown our disappointment.
We have no doubt that the people of Liverpool will make the most of 2008.
But on the evidence of this damp squib, it will be in spite of the city council and the Culture Company and the hangers-on and the bullshitters - not because of them.
We will say no more, except to record the fact that Jason Harborow had the utterly astonishing cheek to turn up at the after show party at the Empire where he spent most of the time the time drinking with Hasitall and Colin CoverUp. No doubt negotiating his pay-off. We will post a picture soon.
We leave any further comment on what should have been an historic and celebratory night to you, the people of Liverpool. Feel free.
This is Liverpool, European Capital of Culture 2008.

Thursday, January 10, 2008


The story so far: The city council's Head of Sport, Chris Briggs is abusing his position to try and get his son's band SIRENZ, a gig at the Mathew St Festival in 2006. He has already pressurised Events staff to no avail and has turned his attention to Jason Harborow, Chief Executive of the Culture Company. The Harbarrowboy has ordered Events staff to find SIRENZ a place (helping his bid to become Executive Director for Culture Meda and Sport). Meanwhile Events boss Lee Forde has returned from holiday to find SIRENZ have jumped the queue and got round all independent judging procedures. Now read on:

-----Original Message-----
From: Forde, Lee
Sent: 13 June 2006 10:24
To: Harborow, Jason
Subject: RE: Mathew Street Festival / Sons Band SIRENZ

Can we pls discuss this.

Lee Forde
General Manager of Events
Liverpool Culture Company

-----Original Message-----
From: Harborow, Jason
Sent: 13 June 2006 11:27
To: Forde, Lee

Subject: RE: Mathew Street Festival / Sons Band SIRENZ


I understand it is sorted now, but we can

Jason Harborow

Chief Executive
Liverpool Culture Company

-----Original Message-----

From: Forde, Lee <Lee.Forde@liverpool.gov.uk>
To: Harborow, Jason <Jason.Harborow@liverpool.gov.uk>
Sent: Fri Jun 16 15:30:25 2006

Subject: FW: FW: Mathew Street Music Festival 2006 - Kuki


Please see e-mail below ref Chris Brigs son's band and the message that isgetting out.

P.S. after pressure from Chris we have given them a very good slot.


-----Original Message---------------
From: Whitehead, Susan
Sent: 16 June 2006 14:53
To: Forde, Lee

Subject: FW: FW: Mathew Street Music Festival 2006 - Kuki


Please see email below from Tony Butler.

It could potentially be very damaging.



Susan Whitehead
Liverpool Culture Company

-----Original Message------

From: Tony Butler @ The Zanzibar Club [mailto:anthony.butler@btconnect.com]
Sent: 16 June 2006 12:08
To: Whitehead, Susan

Subject: Re: FW: Mathew Street Music Festival 2006 - Kuki

Siren phoned me this morning, apparently they know people high up in the council ! thats how they got on.

Lets just hope they dont start telling everyone how they managed to get on.

Citizen Tony

-----Original Message-----

From: Harborow, Jason
Sent: 17 June 2006 18:43
To: Forde, Lee
Cc: Green, Chris; Newman, Paul

Subject: Re: FW: Mathew Street Music Festival 2006 - Kuki
Pls manage this carefully.

Don't allow it to embarass me

Jason Harborow
Chief Executive
Liverpool Culture Company
------Original Message---

From: Briggs, Chris
Sent: 29 August 2006 17:01
To: Forde, Lee; Whitehead, Susan; Blakeman, Kirstie
Cc: Harborow, Jason

Subject: Mathew St Festival / SIRENZ
Lee, Susan, Kirstie

Just a note to thank you for arranging things on Sunday.
SIRENZ went on at 12.15 and I think gave a good performance. In fact Janice Long said some nice things about them and has invited them onto her Radio 2 show, details to be finalised.

Thanks again I really do appreciatite it.
Also congratulations on the festival as a whole it clearly was a great success

Chris Briggs

Head of Sport & Recreation

(So that's alright then, eds. SIRENZ went around openly boasting that their highly placed relatives in the council had got them an important gig. The corrupt Harbarrowboy was promoted to Executive Director, after abusing his position and forcing staff to fix it. Briggs was promoted to Assistant Executive Director after abusing his position by wielding his influence improperly and pressurising staff. And Lee Forde - the only official to have objected - was subsequently forced to quit! Just another everday story of corrupt officials, a corrupt council and weak and stupid Lib Dems, who watched powerless. Colin CoverUp has been told all this of course - but has done nothing. Obviously.)

Monday, January 07, 2008



It is 2006.

City Council Head of Sport, Chris Briggs is trying to get his son's band, SIRENZ a gig at the Mathew Street Festival in the summer.

He has already emailed the Capital of Culture Events Team several times, pushing for the band to be handed a top slot.

But so far, he has got no joy. An independent panel of judges is deciding which bands are to appear. SIRENZ have been sidelined.

Now Mr Briggs decides to pull rank and go over the heads of the Events Team.

He decides to drop Jason Harborow a line at the Culture Company.

Surely Jason can fix it for Briggs?

The Harbarrowboy is meanwhile trying to get the job of Executive Director for Culture, Media & Sport with the city council. When his CoC contract comes to an end after 2008, he can slip into another well-paid sinecure. This is the 'bigger picture'.

It would help his chances if he could ensure that Briggs, a potential rival for the post of Exec Director and a close associate of Council Leader Warren Bradley, owed him a favour or two.

Now read on...

-----Original Message-----
From: Briggs, Chris
Sent: 20 April 2006 15:33
To: Harborow, Jason
Subject: Mathew Street Festival


See below the dialogue I have been having with Kirsty Blakeman. My sons group is call "SIRENS" They are a Merseyside band of 5 in their early 20's . They have played gigs at the ZanziBar, Bar Fly , The Magnet and many more, they have also had their songs played by Billy Butler of his Friday afternoon show.

They are all very good musicians, write their own songs, are very good live performers and would be an ideal local band for the festival.

Thanks for your help on this

Chris Briggs
Head of Sport & Recreation

-----Original Message-----
From: Harborow, Jason
Sent: 25 April 2006 12:16
To: Briggs, Chris

Subject: RE: Mathew Street Festival


I have undertaken some discreet investigation. The groups will be selected by a peer group, the team have all the info they need.
I hope your sons group are selected

Jason Harborow
Chief Executive
Liverpool Culture Company

-----Original Message-----

From: Briggs, Chris
Sent: 07 June 2006 09:57
To: Harborow, Jason

Subject: Mathew Street Festival / Sons Band SIRENZ


Did you listen to the CD I gave you ?

I havnt had any feed back yet from the team about if my sons band SIRENZhave been selected to play.

I understand there are other stages being put up one of which is in Crosby Village. As a Crosby band they would be more than happy to play there.

Any chance ??

This is their web site with 3 sample songs playing. http://www.myspace.com/soundofsirenz

I can imagine how busy you are but I would really appreciate you and/or Lee's help on this.

Any chance



Chris Briggs
Head of Sport & Recreation
-----Original Message-----
From: Harborow, Jason
Sent: 07 June 2006 10:35
To: Forde, Lee
Cc: Blakeman, Kirstie

Subject: FW: Mathew Street Festival / Sons Band SIRENZ


I really need this to happen due to bigger picture issues.

Please can you find a slot for them and let me know.



Jason Harborow
Chief Executive


Friday, January 04, 2008


The following is an email exchange between the interim Assistant Executive Director for Sport and Culture, Chris Briggs, to the Culture Company Events team:

From: Briggs, Chris
Sent: 07 April 2006 14:59
To: Blakeman, Kirstie

Subject: Mathew Street Festival



Judith Feather mentioned to you my sons rock band "SIRENS" and that I was hoping I could get them one of the local band slots on the stage at thisyears festival.
I haven't heard anything yet, do you need any more information from me ?
They are a Merseyside band of 5 in their early 20's . They have played gigs at the ZanziBar, Bar Fly , The Magnet and many more. They are all very good musicians, write their own songs and are very good live performers. I think Judith will have already given you one of their CD's
Could you give me a ring on my mobile 07740 918614

Thanks for your help


-----Original Message-----
From: Blakeman, Kirstie <Kirstie.Blakeman@liverpool.gov.uk>
To: Briggs, Chris <
CC: Whitehead, Susan <Susan.Whitehead@liverpool.gov.uk>
Sent: Fri Apr 07 15:41:20 2006

Subject: RE: Mathew Street Festival

Hi Chris,

Yes, Judith did forward your son's demo CD.
All performers for the new bands stage have been considered and chosen by a panel of local music industry professionals. The selected artists will be approached once all details on the event have been finalised; to ensurecorrect information is being released. All artists will be contacted prior to the end of May. Please bear with us; as you can appreciate there has been a huge number of performers wanting to take part at this year's festival.

Kind regards,


Senior Events Manager
Liverpool Culture Company

-----Original Message-----

From: Briggs, Chris
Sent: 13 April 2006 19:54
To: Blakeman, Kirstie

Subject: Re: Mathew Street Festival


Thanks for the note

I understand there will be a lot of applicants. Can you let me know if I have followed the correct process by sending in the CD I don't recall filling in any application form or providing details of the band, do I need to do this ??


Chris Briggs

Head of Sport and Recreation

-----Original Message-----

From: Blakeman, Kirstie

Sent: 18 April 2006 10:48
To: Briggs, Chris

Subject: RE: Mathew Street Festival

Hi Chris,

Yes, you've provided enough information thanks.

For next years event we are looking into producing a form on the internet for applicant submissions, but for this year there has been no specific process apart form sending CD's in.Kind regards,

Senior Events Manager

Liverpool Culture Company




Tuesday, January 01, 2008


A SENIOR official at the centre of a second Mathew Street council investigation is the step-father of a member of the band which jumped the queue.
Chris Briggs, interim Assistant Executive Director and the Harbarrowboy's deputy, was being investigated over the appearance of the band SIRENZ at the 2006 Mathew Street Festival.
It is alleged that Briggs abused his position to make sure that the band appeared - flouting the established procedures which every other band had to go through.
Briggs is the step-father of one of the founder members of the Crosby-based six-piece, drummer Marc Guy.
It is claimed that Briggs repeatedly pressurised other staff to make sure that SIRENZ got the gig - abusing his position of public trust.
No action has been taken so far against Briggs or the Harbarrowboy who had also been implicated in the conspiracy to fix a top spot for SIRENZ.
It now seems certain that Colin CoverUp will close the investigation by the city council's discredited internal audit team without any further ado.
He may already have done so.
Paying off the Harbarrowboy with £250,000 of public money gives CoverUp the ideal excuse to say that the investigation can not be brought to a successful conclusion.
CoverUp will also probably have the brass neck to tell everyone that it would not be in the public interest to continue with the probe.
After signing Jase's cheque, he may even claim that continuing the probe would involve further unwarranted public expense!
So if nothing happens to Jase, nothing will happen to Mr Briggs either.
We will never know for certain whether Briggs abused his position of public trust to get a gig for his son and his mates at Mathew Street.
(Although we can make our own minds up about that, eds)
Meanwhile, any of the local bands who played by the rules and failed to get a place at the 2006 Mathew St Festival should now review their strategy for pop world domination.
It would certainly help their chances in future if they had friends in high places within the city council.

How the council use Ripa to spy on you....

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