Greenwich Time: Tories make formal complaint

Greenwich’s Conservative leader Spencer Drury has formally complained to the district auditor about Greenwich Council’s decision to keep on publishing its weekly newspaper.

A scrutiny panel endorsed Greenwich Time appearing 50 weeks a year, despite doubt being cast on council claims that GT saves it up to £2m a year in advertising costs.

Cllr Drury’s complaint also says GT continues to mimic local papers and only reflects the voice of the council’s Labour leadership.

He said: “In my opinion Greenwich Council continues to publish Greenwich Time in an effort to influence the opinions of people in favour of the Labour Council. It makes no attempt to offer an alternative view on even the most controversial issues. In my opinion Labour justifies GT with a fig leaf of financial jiggery-pokery.”

“Greenwich remains a one party state with its own ‘pravda’. It is a disgrace in a modern democracy that this sort of propaganda is allowed to flourish at the expense of other local papers and subsidised by unsuspecting taxpayers.”

Indeed, his complaint even refers to a post on this website, which discusses the paper’s change in tone before and after last year’s council election. (greenwich.co.uk has the full letter).

As if by coincidence, this week’s GT contains a “star letter” from a happy “reader”, with Patrick Pires of Thamesmead delighted that the found out about digital skills courses at Ravensbourne college via GT, adding that it was “ironic that printed media such as GT still has a valuable role in informing residents”, and that he now “avidly scans GT for items of topical interest”. Funny, that.

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