Apologies for the delay in the latest FOI Friday – a bad dose of chickenpox in our house has made keeping on top of it harder than usual! As ever, this is list is compiled using Google News and from suggestions sent to me on Twitter @davidhiggerson
Crimes committed at leisure centres < < < Welwyn Hatfield Times
A variation on an old favourite – list the crimes committed at X – yields some interesting results when X becomes a leisure centre:
OUTRAGING public decency and grievous bodily harm are just two of the crimes reported at Welwyn Hatfield leisure centres in the past two years.
Venues hired by councils < < < Leicester Mercury
An interesting example of council spending being held to account through FOI. Trade unions have been critical of the decision to hire conference facilities for meetings. The council, I guess, argues it has nowhere big enough to house 400 people. But do you really need 400 people in a room to talk transport?
Parking tickets overturned < < < Swindon Advertiser
What are the chances of getting a parking ticket overturned in Wiltshire? One in six, according to information obtained by the Swindon Advertiser. I liked the council’s defence of the high appeal success rate:
Swindon Council said the fact that so many tickets were successfully challenged was a good thing, because it shows the council is prepared to listen to complaints.
A spokesman said: “We cancel a lot of penalty charge notices because we’re prepared to listen to people if they have a reasonable excuse.
“Drivers should be reassured by this – they would have more reason to be worried if we didn’t cancel many.”
Of course, with prevention always better than cure, getting the tickets issued correctly in the first place would be better.
Reducing hospital bed numbers and overcrowding < < < BBC
Interesting stats obtained by the BBC from Welsh health boards which reveal 1000 hospital beds have disappeared in the country in the last three years. It’s not as if there isn’t demand – hospitals are regularly overcrowded now, according to the figures. Continue reading