Martin Esom

Islamist extremism in Waltham Forest: a disturbing new episode

In the past week or so, much of the press has covered the trial and conviction of Forest Gate Isis supporter Umar Ahmed Haque on a number of serious terrorist offences. During Mr. Haque’s trial, the court heard extensive evidence about his activities at two schools and a madrassa in East London, where (amongst other things) under the guise of teaching ‘Islamic Studies’ he ‘re-enacted attacks on po... »

LBWF dodges the Local Government Association’s acclaimed peer review scheme, and it’s reasonable to ask: why?

Since 2011, the Local Government Association (LGA) has run and financed a scheme called Corporate Peer Challenge (CPC), which it sees as ‘a core element of our sector-led improvement offer to local authorities’. As the name suggests CPC involves small teams of experienced officers and councillors visiting participating councils in order to understand how they work, challenge assumptions, and share... »

LBWF CEO Martin Esom’s appointment to the Health and Safety Executive Board: a step far too far

In July of this year, LBWF CEO Martin Esom joined the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) as a part-time non-executive director – a post that entails approximately 30 days commitment per year for a remuneration of no less than £15,100 (that is £503 per day). The HSE obviously values Mr. Esom highly, with its press release citing, amongst other things, his background in environmental health, his succ... »

St. Mary’s Primary School, Walthamstow, and asbestos: the final verdict (2)

Lest there be any doubt about the matter, this excerpt from AEC Ltd, “Independent Report on the Potential Risk of Exposure to Asbestos during Refurbishment Works in 2011 at St Mary’s School Walthamstow” (NPSL, 2013), p.6 demonstrates that LBWF had overall responsibility for what went on at St. Mary’s, and also (according to AEC) specific culpability for the events that led to the likely expo... »

St. Mary’s Primary School, Walthamstow, and asbestos: the final verdict (1)

The Waltham Forest Guardian‘s Tom Barnes has just filed an online story reporting that, following a prosecution brought by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE),  Balfour Beatty Regional Construction, NPS London Ltd., and Squibb Group Ltd. today have been fined in all over £1m. for breaking various safety regulations in connection with the removal of asbestos at St Mary’s Church of Eng... »

LBWF Chief Executive Martin Esom responds to my questions re the Cllr. Ahsan Khan affair

I post Mr. Esom’s responses below. Much of what he writes is self-evidently vague, and seems to have been written with the explicit aim of avoiding giving anything away, hardly appropriate in the light of the seriousness of both the events in question and the wider situation that we find ourselves in. Regarding the ‘community award’, I understand that LBWF is claiming that every visitor to the May... »

Extremism in Waltham Forest: a quick roundup of the recent lowpoints

It has been a busy few months on the extremism front in Waltham Forest, so here is a short roundup of the major stories that have been featured on this blog (links to the full versions are pasted beneath). The material of course largely speaks for itself. One point is important though. LBWF Chief Executive Martin Esom claims some expertise in counter-extremism work, and chairs the London Prevent B... »

The Cllr. Ahsan Khan affair: new revelations UPDATED

Harry’s Place has further revelations about the Cllr. Khan affair: http://hurryupharry.org/2016/04/18/meet-the-friends-of-corbynista-vicar-steven-saxby/ It certainly does seem strange that a person who apparently feels the imagery pasted below is acceptable now finds himself honoured with a ‘community award’ by councillors, including Madam Mayor, on LBWF property. I’ve poin... »

Cllr. Ahsan Khan steps down amid talk of inadmissible intolerance UPDATED

Word reaches me that earlier in the week Labour councillors were circulated with an e-mail which announced that Cllr. Ahsan Khan, Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing, had stepped down from the Cabinet, pending an independent investigation by the LBWF Monitoring Officer. What appears to have happened is that Cllr. Khan organised an event in the Town Hall, attended by the Mayor, which was then t... »

LWBF, Prevent, and the Lea Bridge Rd. Mosque

An interesting and very concerning report on the Lea Bridge Rd. Mosque has been published at the blog Harry’s Place: http://hurryupharry.org/2016/04/06/the-waltham-forest-islamic-association-conspiracy-theories-antisemitism-and-rejection-of-the-west/ I have written to Martin Esom, LBWF Chief Executive, as follows: ‘Dear Mr. Esom, You no doubt will have seen the recent report on the Lea... »

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