Departee’d but not forgotten

Following a £185,000  loss on the Grand Departy  last year, the Council is now offering apprenticeships in "event management"

Grand Departee

How the York Council managed to lose £187,000 on the infamous “Grand Departee” concert staged in July 2014.

An independent audit has revealed the true level of the confusion and poor decision taking which surrounded the Grand Departee concert held at Monks Cross in July 2014

Although tAudit quote 1acked onto the TdF cycle race, the concert was in effect a stand-alone event.

The auditor’s report says that there was little documentary evidence to help their enquiry and many of the officers and members involved had subsequently left the Authority.

Most of the blame for the shambles is placed at the door of the last – Labour dominated –  “Cabinet”.

“It is concerning that officers were expected to undertake inherently risky commercial activity without a formal member decision”.

Although it has been estimated that the TdF injected £8.3 million into the local economy, little of this directly benefited taxpayers who picked up a total bill for £1.8 million.Audit quote 2

We pointed out at the time that the event was heading for a financial disaster

 It remains unclear why the Council failed to cut its losseson the event when it became clear that ticket sales were derisory.

So have the lessons been learnt?

TAudit quote 3he principle of open decision making with properly costed and monitored plans is probably the most important.

Perhaps the nearest current project with similar variables is the plan to establish a “Community Stadium” in the City. This also has grown like topsie with an initial zero taxpayer’s subsidy (other than the stadium site land) having grown to £8 million.

The inclusion of an additional swimming pool, which will in effect be in competition with the Yearsley pool, suggests that not all lessons have yet been embedded in Council thinking

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