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"Hello Radiolympia. This is direct television from the studios at Alexandra Palace!" *

THESE were the immortal words spoken to camera by Elizabeth Cowell and received at the big Radio show at Olympia, in West London. This was amongst similar test transmissions during August 1936, prior to the beginning of regular broadcasting just a couple of months later, on 2 November 1936.

Alexandra Palace was the birthplace of scheduled public, "high" definition television broadcasting in the UK and arguably, the world.

The American Modern Mechanix magazine of May 1935, described this as, England Will Broadcast First Chain Television Programs, to "Lookers".

BBC Studios A & B are the world's oldest surviving television studios.

YET in 2007, our People’s Palace was to be sold down the river by its very guardians – the Trustee – the London Borough of Haringey. The TV studios were to be destroyed with the connivance of the local council. Here is raw uncensored opinion and information about the scandal of the attempted fire-sale of our Charitable Trust’s asset, for property development. It includes letters sent to local papers, published & unpublished.

AFTER receiving a slap-down from the High Court (2007, October 5), two and a half years went by before the council finally abandoned its 15-year-old policy of "holistic" sale (i.e. lock stock and barrel). Then there was an attempt at partial sale ("up to two-thirds") to a music operator but without governance reform. To tart the place up for a developer, the council blithely sought about a million pounds towards this goal, a further sum of cash to be burnt.

THE local council has proved itself, to everyone's satisfaction, to have been a poor steward and guardian for over 20 years. Now, the master plan (below) developed under the new CEO Duncan Wilson OBE deserves to succeed.

It would be also be a big step forward to have a Trust Board at least partly independent of Haringey Council. 'Outside' experts would be an advantage. They'd likely be more interested, committed, of integrity and offer greater continuity. Bringing independent members onto the board and freeing it from political control would be the best assurance of success, sooner.


Transcript of Haringey Council Standards Committee Determination Panel Hearing 2011 March 30-31

THE link (above, title) will produce a saveable, searchable, PDF file of >600kb and 100 pages and is a Transcript of the Hearing of Haringey Council Standards Committee Determination Panel Hearing 2011 March 30-31.

Councillor Charles Adje, Chairman of the Alexandra Palace Trust Board, was Found to have Breached the Member's Code of Conduct. He brought the council into disrepute, by failing to share a crucial piece of professional advice with his fellow Trustees:

This Briefing Note strongly advised against any [further] inducement to a developer, Firoka, and argued that no action need be taken in response to threats of withdrawal by Firoka. This document was suppressed and the then General Manager was pressured into producing a document – containing wholly contrary advice – that did go before the Trust Board.

This led to the extraordinarily generous Licence-to-Firoka, including huge subsidy from the taxpayer and a direct loss to our charity of between £1,500,000 and £2,000,000 (probably more).

Ex-Trustee Adje was suspended as councillor for four months by the Standards Hearing and he is required to undergo training on his return to Haringey Council. (Can any amount of training substitute for integrity and character?)

The transcript has only become available in late June 2011.

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