Just before Keight
took over in Kirkby as the Leader of the One Party State of the Labour Group,
there was already widespread corruption. Cllr Dave Tempest, who was jailed
in the 70's for the Kirkby Ski Slope scandal, was released from prison, and
was in the 1990's still a considerable influence in the Town - and more
importantly in the Council.
In an attempt
As the ex-Leader of the Council and an ex-convict , he was in the process of
"rehabilitation" (as if any corrupt politician could be rehabilitated!)
and managed to get himself onto the committees of several charities and
voluntary groups. It was well known that he could and did "favours" for
close friends and political allies, even after he had long since been a
councillor. And he would brag that he could get anything he wanted "off
Keight". And this was according to him, because he had "loads of stuff" on him.
to regain his power-base, Tempest managed to get some more
of his "friends" elected onto the Council, even though they were so thick
they couldnt even run a sweet shop, and others he got cushy Council and
Government-funded jobs for which they had no qualifications or experience.
He also got them preferential treatment when it came to "private" housing
in Kirkby. i.e. off the Housing Associations.
One of them
whose "political career" he sponsored became a councillor
and a Justice of the Peace, trying cases as a magistrate in Kirkby and later
Huyton Magistrates court. This Labour councillor, through Tempest's connections,
also had many quango jobs on committees (like another of his placemen who had a
well-paid job with a Council-funded community organisation, and also had a £6,000
salary as a member of a local Health Care Primary Trust - which only sat 3 times a year !).
One of the committees this councillor was on was debating a minor disciplinary matter over
one of its manual workers (who wasn't allowed to be present) when the councillor
completely lost it! Throwing all civilised behaviour to the wind and any sense of
justice - which you would think a magistrate would need to have if nothing else -
the councillor hysterically demanded that the person be sacked immediately, be banned
from the premises and its grounds forever, and should have no right of appeal. Given
that the worker had not even been allowed to attend the hearing in the first place,
this seemed to be par for the course. But it was still amazing that a Labour councillor,
and a Magistrate, could act in this manner, and that nobody thought it unusual.
All of this
happened during Keight's reign. But nothing was ever done
about this crude, uncouth, uncivilised,lynch-mob behaviour - not to mention the
lack of any fairmindedness and justice - from one of Kirkby's so-called "working
class" Labour councillors.
The Kirkby councillor, who - as a "radical" "community leader"
in the Seventies led the Tenants Rights demos - and who twenty years later
as Chairman of Merseyside Fire Authority backed a fat cat pay rise for
Mersysides Fire Chief, whilst closing down fire stations.
Dave Tempest took his secrets with him, he is deceased and here is a link to Knowsley Councils tribute to this
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