Murky Depths

News in London and beyond

Greenwich borough

Greenwich Council seek to spend £1.3 million on newspaper

Greenwich Council are seeking to spend £1.3 million on a new four year print contract for their Greenwich Info magazine including £400k for printing and £900k for distribution.

In recent years the authority came in for heavy criticism for spending large sums on its weekly Greenwich Time newspaper – one of only two local authorities out of more than 350 in the country that produced a weekly paper. The only other was Tower Hamlets.





The Government cracked down and Greenwich Council eventually ceased production in 2016 with an out of court settlement but only after spending £80,000 trying to keep it going. They then launched the fortnightly Greenwich Info which features less pages.

The former Greenwich Time was often referred to as Pravda for its relentless positive spin on the council and its activities. Many issues in the borough highlighted on sites such as this and 853 would not be covered.

The latest issue of Greenwich Info puts out a glowing, one-sided take on housing and education.

A 750 council home target from 2022 is mentioned alongside 17,000 on the housing waiting list and 800 homeless households, yet there is no mention that the council’s cabinet recently approved selling public land on estates to a private developer for pocket flats (barely over the legal size limit) only affordable to those earning above £35,000 a year, nor that the council launched a £65 million house buying program at the peak of a property cycle. The council’s own figures revealed that buying existing homes off the market was the worst option for providing homes for those in need even before prices in the borough fell 10%.

Information on what homes were purchased is also kept secret thus value for money cannot be judged.

Pollution

Green issues are covered but again, only positive news is featured with these comments:

Myriad issues with pollution and congestion are not featured.

Those kind of positive statements are common in Greenwich Info. With the paper being sent to most (all?) homes in the borough its easy to see why it is criticised as unbalanced and one-sided.

Council’s are obliged to provide certain information in print form – though many authorities print it solely in other publications or print less frequently than every fortnight.

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6 Comments

  1. The hilarious part is the amount of red ink that is used to print every page! Like it’s just a coincidence. How about a blue or green issue for some balance 😂

    • HK

      hahaha.
      You won’t get any balance from Greenwich council!
      Why would the cancel change it’s approach when they get voted in by default.
      We all know how they only concentrate on the nice parts of the borough and totally disregard the rest of the borough that needs most of the attention and funds!

  2. Alfred Horrocks

    It is a total waste of local funds / it is completely useless – containing no real news. It is simply ideological dogma keeping it going. Use the funds for social deprivation – please please
    Alf Horrocks

  3. JFP

    Completely agree with the comments here, this is just propaganda paid for by residents.

    I despair at how easily Labour continue to hold seats on the council without meaningful contest.

    FYI I live in a new build block on the peninsula (enderby wharf) and do not receive this, though I think they may putput a small stack in the concierge office (perhaps 20 for the C. 500 flats)

  4. anonymous201486

    Is a paltry 550 new homes a ‘boost’ and positive spin in the face of there being 17,000 households on the waiting list? Greenwich council is well and truly down the rabbit hole.

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