Galliagh Concerned Residents Group

Imagine Derry City Council on The Dragons Den

We all know about the economic crisis that's happening across the world, we all have been told we will need to tighten our belts. Derry City Council give money to help run the floodlit pitch (MUGA) at the Bishops Field in Creggan. The pitch only generates £35000 per year but costs £155000 to run, meaning Derry City Council provide £120000 of ratepayers money. With the bishops field (MUGA) pitch running at a loss what do Derry City Council do, they build more MUGA's. Can you imagine that on the Dragons Den TV show, we've a great investment idea, we're going to open up MUGA's across the town.  You could imagine James Caan one of the dragons on the show.

Here's an idea of  what the script would look like.

Dragons - so whats your idea

Derry City Council : We want to build floodlit muga's around the town

Dragons: How are you going to market these

Derry City Council: As facilities for the deprived children

Dragons: If they're deprived how are they gonna afford to pay

Derry City Council: Not our problem for the first year they will be free, then after the year they'll have to pay and we'll block book the facility to paying groups, so it doesnt really matter because the ratepayers will pick up the cheque.

Dragons: So are these muga's economically viable?

Derry City Council : No not really one in Creggan runs at a loss of 120k per year, so we want to build at least three more

Dragons: So do you think we should waste money on these

Derry City Council:  yes and we've got a great idea for an airport and we also want to close the busiest recycling facility in the north to save money.

DERRY CITY COUNCIL PLEASE TAKE NOTE - AS THESE FACILITIES OPERATE IN MINUS FIGURES - AT A LOSS 2 MINUS FIGURES DO NOT MAKE A POSITIVE.

Here's a thought, when the Outer North set up their own consultation despite the Derry City Council resolution to have a meeting of all interested parties, they extended it over a radius of 400 metres. And by doing so giving someone nearly 1/2km away from the site the same say as someone whose home directly faces onto, or backs onto the site. 

When quizzed as to why they chose 400 metres, the ONNP at first told residents  it was the legal distance to consult for the type of facility in question. When asked to produce a copy of the legislation supporting this assertion, they changed their story and said 400 metres was the distance a child could walk safely.

So does that mean that the children who live more than 400 metres away are being put at risk? Because they won't be able to make it to the new facilities 'safely'

ALL the play facilities planned for the Galliagh area are tucked away at the bottom end of the area. So it stands to reason that if they were happy to apply the 400 metre radius to their survey and based upon their reasoning, then they must accept that residents argument for the need for play facilities in different areas of Galliagh is right. BUT WHAT WOULD WE KNOW? WE ONLY LIVE HERE!


But do bear in mind that when the ONNP, Galliagh Development Trust and NIHE created their 'masterplan' there was no provision for play facilities at the top end of Galliagh.

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The excerpts below are from a report by Copius Consulting Ltd based in Belfast. These are from the Outer North Area Youth Strategy. The population figures in the report are based on the 2001 census, so in 2008 the information was 7 years old to begin with. 

The total youth population if you add up the figures in the demography breakdown is 11731 'young people 0-24 years. Now look at the 1st set of figures. These are from 4 consultations carried out on the 1st April 2008. The total number of young people surveyed in 43, a quick bit of math will show it amounts to less than a HALF of 1 percent of young people in the catchment area were surveyed. And of those they were not representative of the entire Outer North Catchment Area!

Only 1 of the consultations was carried out in Galliagh. Now even a layman like myself can see that to base your conclusion on a sample so small is not representative of the people in question.  As residents have said, ye could'nt make it up!

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Below is a scan from the minutes of the ONNP from Fri 23rd May 2008. Here we have 2 community workers from Galliagh resigning from the ONNP. One of the community workers states that  'THE COMMUNITY BELIEVE THAT ONNP IS NOT AN OPEN AND TRANSPARENT BODY AND HE HAS BEEN INSTRUCTED TO OFFER HIS RESEGNATION TO THE ONNP BOARD'. Well respected community worker Jimmy Doherty of the Galliagh Integrated Advice Service tenders his resignation on the same grounds.  So 2 years ago the ONNP were felt by the community to be non transparent tot he community.

GUESS WHAT NOTHING HAS CHANGED!

In the last paragraph of this scan it is stated that the ONNP has business to conduct and should not react to the threat of protests...  - Now if you've looked at the documents page when residents asked for information the ONNP accused them of DEMANDING INFORMATION AND THREATENING TO GO TO THE INFORMATION COMMISSIONER. It seems to be that if they don't like what they hear they claim its a threat!

But as you can see the ONNP seemingly don't have much regard for the local community, I guess  as one resident has put it, we must be deprived and are just too stupid to notice it!

Could ye make it up? Ye Couldn't!

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This document below had residents in stitches, its a scan of a section of the ONNP minutes from 28th Sept 2008. Look at the second paragraph. This is in relation to the development of facilities in the area (did the ONNP consult anybody about these facilities either?) PETER states that ' THERE HAS BEEN NO CONSULTATION WITH THE ONNP WHICH HE BELIEVES IS NOT ACCEPTABLE'.  

GUESS WHAT PETER THINK HOW THE PEOPLE THAT LIVE HERE ACTUALLY FEEL!

YE COULD NOT MAKE THIS STUFF UP!

THE ONNP ARE ANNOYED BECAUSE DERRY CITY COUNCIL DID NOT CONSULT WITH THEM! THEN IN THE 2ND LAST PARAGRAPH PETER PROPOSES THE BOARD WRITE TO DERRY CITY COUNCIL OUTLINING THEIR DISGUST AT DERRY CITY COUNCIL NOT CONSULTING ON THE ISSUE.  

A MESSAGE FOR PETER AND THE ONNP BOARD WHEN YOU READ THIS - RESIDENTS IN GALLIAGH SUFFERED FROM A LACK OF CONSULTATION BY DERRY CITY COUNCIL, DERRY CITY COUNCIL AGREED TO HOLD A MEETING OF INTERESTED PARTIES- THE ONNP FORMED THEIR OWN WORKING GROUP AND EXCLUDED RESIDENTS. WELCOME TO OUR WORLD MUCKER, AND HAVING SUFFERED FROM A LACK OF CONSULTATION AT THE HANDS OF DERRY CITY COUNCIL MAYBE THE ONNP SHOULD HAVE KNOWN BETTER!

WE SUPPORT YOU PETER! WE KNOW HOW YOU FEEL!!!

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When a Galliagh Resident was speaking to the ONNP strategy

manager Darren Kirby questioning the basis for some of the

proposed developments The conversation went as follows.

Mr Kirby 'but we've had a pile of consultations on this.


Resident: 'ok lets take the ONNP youth strategy document, that was based on a consultation by Copious Consultancy'.


Mr Kirby: 'thats right.'


Resident: 'Well that report uses the 2001 census figures which

means that the  amount of young people in the ONNP

catchment area was a potential 11731.'

In that report they state that they interviewed 43 young

people in the consultations which took place on the one day. Two of the consultations didn't even take place in Galliagh. So what has happened is that they surveyed less than one half percent of young people in theONNP catchment area. With only one consultation being held in Galliagh.


Mr. Kirby: 'don't quote statistics at me.'


Resident - 'But its your report!'

Ye could'nt make it up if ye tried!


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