Yesterday London mayor Sadiq Khan withdrew his support for the Garden Bridge by refusing to sign the public guarantee that the Garden Bridge Trust desperately needs in order to satisfy a crucial planning condition. Read his letter here
The mayor is a brave man, saving London from this ridiculous folly. The Micky Mouse finances have finally caught up with it. But why has £47m of taxpayers' cash been wasted on this nonsense? This could have built two Millennium Bridges by now!
And why were Whitehall mandarins overruled by George Osborne and his chums? Boris Johnson should be investigated for malfeasance in public office alongside those at the top of Transport for London who should have known better.
It is a scandal that the then TfL Commissioner Peter Hendy was paid £650,000 a year yet failed in his basic duty of protecting the public purse from pie-in-the-sky projects costing millions. And then there’s former TfL Managing Director of Planning Richard De Cani and former Deputy Mayor for Transport Isabel Dedring, both key players and decision makers who bypassed procedure in order to get the project off the ground, seemingly at any cost. Both have now gone to Arup, Garden Bridge consultant engineers who have pocketed £8million of TfL money.
Therefore we urge everyone to contact their MP/those standing for election and the Public Accounts Committee and to demand a public investigation into this whole sordid affair. We must make those responsible for this misconduct wholly accountable, and to try and recoup some of the £47m that the Garden Bridge Trust has wasted.
Write to your MP writetothem.com
And to the Public Accounts Committee firstname.lastname@example.org
Here are articles that explain just how crooked this project has been from the start:
How George Osborne avoided offical channels with GardenBridge scheme here
London's Garden Bridge project was rigged by Boris Johnson - it cannot go ahead here
How The Garden Bridge Fell Down: LBC's In-Depth Investigation
It's not quite dead yet - there is the faint chance that the Garden Bridge Trust will be bailed out by an extremely foolish wealthy body with millions to spare to build the Johnsonian folly and to guarantee its ongoing costs of £3.1m per year, in perpetuity. In the meantime, we hope that the 'Trust' will have the sense to walk away and to save its remaining backers the ignominy of a further defeat if/when we challenge their forthcoming Businesss Plan which must be presented to our chair as well as to Lambeth council (along with the guarantee) as stated in a court order secured in a legal challenge in 2015. Unlike TfL and Lambeth council in the past, we shall be subjecting it to an extremely thorough examination.