Coniston Bye laws/Ruskin

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Renegadenemo
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Re: Coniston Bye laws/Ruskin

Post by Renegadenemo »

thunderer wrote:
Tue Jul 28, 2020 3:13 pm
Richie wrote:
Mon Jul 27, 2020 10:37 pm
Nil illegitium carborundum....
Can't help but laugh at how that appears to be a fitting description given certain actions and behaviours that have been described....
Oh there has been some serious behind the scenes shenanigans but we've always covered it over because the project has always been an uplifting human interest story and we've put up with a lot to maintain its unfailingly positive public face but when people are calling us thieves as a direct result of the museum trying to go back on the deal we made with them it's time to speak up so it'll all go in the diary as a permanent record - there's still plenty to tell.
As for the museum I well remember Vicky Slowe, the long-serving curator, saying to me as I worriedly asked them to get a move on preparing for the day Bluebird would be able to run and go on display, that if they were the sort of people who knew how to run a business or motivate volunteers they wouldn't be running a museum - a very honest appraisal. I also remember saying to one of the parish councillors on Bute, when being whinged at because we were in Scotland rather than Cumbria, that they could have had the crew training in Coniston but no preparations were in place to host it, they had no leader and even if someone with the requisite qualities were to offer to step up they wouldn't allow themselves to be led - and she agreed with me, because it's true.

We have even offered to run the whole show, operate the boat, sort out the display, erect the necessary barriers to keep selfie hunters from scratching or denting all our lovely panels. We even offered to do all the risk assessment for moving about on the tiled floor at the same time as a similar exercise was being done to install the Derwent engine at the home of the aerospace company that can't be named so we've tried our level best over the years. But now they are just going to have to sort themselves out and get to a level of professionalism such that we'll work with them - that or leave us to get the job done. Nor are they innocent of some behind the scenes skulduggery...

When the Qualcast Kid rounded up his cousins and Aunty Tonia to change the donation agreement in March 2019 they basically tried to slot in a whole new document that, on paper at least, pre-dated the 2006 one and totally cut out the BBP - not so much as a mention. So by January 2020 the ink on it was well and truly dry. Also worthy of note is that it was never worth the paper it was written on because we weren't consulted so we were entirely within our rights to rely on the old one should it have become necessary to argue over it. The old one was also an agreement between the Campbells and the museum and, though mentioned and named as the designated restorers of the boat, we were never signatories or parties to that deed of gift and it didn't bind us to anything.
So, fast forward to early 2020 just after Gina swung the baseball bat at our legs, as Rich so succinctly put it, what did the museum try to do?
They published the old deed, the 2006 one, in the full knowledge that a year earlier they had signed a new one in an effort to cut BBP out of the equation, then they attempted to argue that we had somehow failed to meet an obligation that didn't exist between us because it was their job to put K7 on display, not ours. To do that they would have to work with us towards that goal and they hadn't met that obligation.

Now we're not talking about someone making a parachute for the teddy bear because she didn't get a pony this time - this was much more serious because it was done by supposedly responsible officers of a registered charity beholden to the Charities Commission who , incidentally, state in their guide to charities and litigation that litigation has to be an absolute last resort when all other avenues have been explored yet no other avenues were explored at all - -remember we said come and have fish and chips at the seaside and we'll thrash something out? You can buy a lot of chips for 45k!
So, needless to say, the 2006 deed was swiftly removed from their website but they didn't care how much damage they did to us in the process. Fortunately all but a handful of idiots saw straight through it so no lasting harm.

The really interesting group in recent times, however, has been the LDNPA. We did get a bit fed up of their seeming lack of enthusiasm for a project that would bring much interest and income to their park at one stage. The first person we ever met from the Park Authority was a guy called Bob something or another who told us that they really wanted these big events to sustain the park because developers were nibbling at its fringes and people were jetting off to the sun on Ryanair rather than standing knee-deep in soggy mulch of a weekend so we took that mission statement to heart and worked hard at delivering on it.
But fast forward a few years and the options were slowly being closed out. No, we couldn't operate in school holidays, weekends, bank holidays or after 4.00pm. Then there was some shenanigans with a faked up document supposedly written for us but when it had been modified from one originally written for Windermere they hadn't done a find and replace in the Word document and had missed one reference to the wrong lake. Our Malcolm picked this up in a heartbeat, of course - I never really got my head around what it all meant but it was naughty, apparently.
And then came the Crew Training on Bute and suddenly people were clamouring for Bluebird to run on Coniston so what do you suppose happened?
The Park Authority sat and pondered this and basically said, yes, OK, we hear you, let's get this done. Suddenly we had dates when everyone could come and see us and we got all the support we needed. In turn we wrote very thorough risk assessments and safety planning documents, started training safety boat crews and divers and did a comprehensive survey of the slipway and course.
Next, as we all know, the BEWG or whatever they were pulled the plug because suddenly they saw all the work that ought to have been done years ago then filed away to be dusted off and today's date inserted and couldn't begin to be ready in time.
Even then we offered to take the spotlight off their embarrassment by going back to Bute with them as a joint venture but off came their noses and The Kid ballsed up the rest.

But what was pretty much missed in all of this was that the LDNPA was leading the way, weighing up what people wanted and finding ways to deliver. They were professional about it. They likely didn't like us very much but that was set aside to get the job done and that's how it should be.
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Re: Coniston Bye laws/Ruskin

Post by rob565uk »

Renegadenemo wrote:
Wed Jul 29, 2020 2:15 pm
But what was pretty much missed in all of this was that the LDNPA was leading the way, weighing up what people wanted and finding ways to deliver. They were professional about it. They likely didn't like us very much but that was set aside to get the job done and that's how it should be.
Bill - your comment above about key parties disliking each other underlines how far relations with the Museum in particular have gone downhill in this tragic chain of events.

Given the depth of feelings all round, what do you see happening next to try and move things forward in a more positive way?

It would be easy to remain deadlocked in a blame game but that is surely not acceptable to anyone who cares about the future of K7 and the legacy of Donald Campbell.

1 in 10 people understands binary. The other one doesn't

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Re: Coniston Bye laws/Ruskin

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rob565uk wrote:
Thu Jul 30, 2020 7:55 am
Renegadenemo wrote:
Wed Jul 29, 2020 2:15 pm
But what was pretty much missed in all of this was that the LDNPA was leading the way, weighing up what people wanted and finding ways to deliver. They were professional about it. They likely didn't like us very much but that was set aside to get the job done and that's how it should be.
Bill - your comment above about key parties disliking each other underlines how far relations with the Museum in particular have gone downhill in this tragic chain of events.

Given the depth of feelings all round, what do you see happening next to try and move things forward in a more positive way?

It would be easy to remain deadlocked in a blame game but that is surely not acceptable to anyone who cares about the future of K7 and the legacy of Donald Campbell.
Good question... The important word in the paragraph you quote from yesterday is 'likely'. I used it as an illustration of how work can be done at a professional level without personal feelings being part of the equation.
In reality what happened was that a bunch of us went to LDNPA HQ and had a long meeting with one of the big cheeses. We all shook hands, smiled a lot, laughed and bantered and got down to the important business of what the park required in order to sign off on us running that summer. We took away a great deal of information and answered all the questions asked of us and if anyone in the room was less than fond of anyone else it certainly gave no hint of showing.
We then went off and applied what we'd learned then delivered a thirty-two page planning document to the park that met with their approval. It wasn't the totally finished job but we hoped it would demonstrate both our ability and willingness to hit their targets an in return allow them to confidently let us loose without having to worry that it was all going to go horribly wrong. Speculating a little here but the impression I gained at the time was that we all had more respect for one another and one another's ways after that exercise than before so it was certainly beneficial and that part of it we know we can do again.

However - what happens next is, to an extent, out of our hands unless we just say sod the lot of them and do as we please because it requires others to step up and make things happen. We can do that, we're good at that but there are many things we're powerless to do.

One thing that is NOT going to happen is us carrying on with the rebuild then putting the boat into the museum without a watertight contract that allows us to get her out and run her regularly and who can blame us? We already have a deal from 2013 and we could issue proceedings to get a declaration from a judge that it stands and considering the paper trail that supports it we're home and dry there but do we really want to go there? Doubtless some would see us as the bad guys even though our hand would have been forced and making the museum defendants in a court action would cost them even more than the Qualcast Kid ever did but most important is - we shouldn't have to!

That said, here's a little personal history because it's both relevant and false rumours have swirled about it for years but I couldn't really set the record straight because it was ongoing. In 2012 I discovered my own parents stealing from one of my companies to fund my useless sibling - how many people do you know with a useless sibling?
Very long story - the short version. I sacked them so they issued court proceedings based on a fairytale in which I'd agreed to give them a million quid's worth of property, which of course I hadn't. That rumbled on for a few years until they realised they were going to lose in court so they withdrew and the judge awarded me 100% costs, and that never happens. But that wasn't the end of them. They brought another action a year later because back in the mists of time I'd traded some shares for a bale-out after I damaged a customer's car and now they were claiming to have been unfairly prejudiced as minority shareholders because I was moving money hither and thither and not giving any to them, except I wasn't, so after sifting my company records with a fine tooth comb they realised again that their case was about to collapse and I bought their shares at half price to get them off my desk.
I mention this for two reasons - one, someone once said to me, 'didn't you sue your mother?' and the answer is, no, she tried to sue me and failed, twice. And the other reason is that after eight years of civil litigation as a defendant a little bimble through the legal process to sort the BBP contracts would be an entertaining breeze for me and the first class lawyers whose acquaintance I've made in all that time.

We are, however already in the legal process having issued our claim and gone through the requisite pre-action protocol and we have invited the museum to mediate. Done a couple of these before and basically you go and sit in a room at a neutral venue with your lawyer's clock ticking and a mediator, a judge or QC or similar, flitting between rooms trying to broker a deal - you don't even have to clap eyes on the other side. But it's very expensive - much more expensive than chips at the seaside. No problem doing another one though if that's what everyone wants but you have to ask yourself, just why?

So what about if all of that was sorted and the contracts signed? Many people want to see K7 run on Coniston Water. I admit that would be cool but speaking only for myself here and not necessarily on behalf of other team members, it doesn't bother me one way or the other. Scotland is just as good. It's running the machine and working with the team that does it for me and it doesn't matter where that happens but if that's what everyone wants I'm in 100%. Now then, we know how to do our bit, or at least we used to, we're almost needing another crew training exercise now, and the LDNPA knows what's needed and what they would have to do so where is the blockage? We can't go closing roads in the Lake District or plonking Portaloos down Coniston High St. Other people have to involve themselves to make any of that possible.

Alternatively, we could do another set of runs on Bute, or another Scottish lake and the museum could set up their stall, sell their merch and shake a tin - no problem. We offered to do that next year to help with their financial woes but it's way too late now and the soonest we could be in good shape to run now is 2022.

When you say, 'deadlocked in a blame game' the time for blame is behind us. We worked hard for 15 years during which we implored the museum to stay across the issues with us so we'd all be good to go at the same time and they didn't. All we ever heard was when, when, when. OK - it's done now. Spilt milk, and you're right again in that it's not acceptable to anyone who cares about the future of K7 and DMC's legacy but it could have all been very different and not because of anything we did. Having agreed a deal many years ago we can't reasonably be expected to walk away empty handed. We would never have bothered building a static museum object and, let's be honest, anyone who cares about K7 and DMC's legacy doesn't want that anyway so before we resume we need the future mapped out and signed in blood. We are ready to eat those fish and chips and square it away and put the past behind us but the museum has to do likewise so the ball is well and truly in their court to get things moving this time.

In the meantime, doesn't our Crusader look amazing!
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Re: Coniston Bye laws/Ruskin

Post by Malcolm Ops »

Renegadenemo wrote:
Thu Jul 30, 2020 12:51 pm
Many people want to see K7 run on Coniston Water. I admit that would be cool but speaking only for myself here and not necessarily on behalf of other team members, it doesn't bother me one way or the other. Scotland is just as good. It's running the machine and working with the team that does it for me and it doesn't matter where that happens but if that's what everyone wants I'm in 100%.
My role was to get the Coniston Water Byelaw amended and the opportunity for Cumbria to have the Proving Trial on Coniston Water (two years assisting with the BEWG). I loved Loch Fad and the Isle of Bute in 2018 (and I have been back for one holiday since then), but to me K7 needs to be run on Coniston Water.

If I become a lone voice so be it, because I can, it seems, write operating protocol that the Scottish Authorities understand.
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JfromJAGs
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Re: Coniston Bye laws/Ruskin

Post by JfromJAGs »

Bill, your posts are way too long. You are bored. You better start working on some old tin again ;)
BR,
Joerg

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Re: Coniston Bye laws/Ruskin

Post by Renegadenemo »

JfromJAGs wrote:
Thu Jul 30, 2020 5:13 pm
Bill, your posts are way too long. You are bored. You better start working on some old tin again ;)
BR,
Joerg
Hi Joerg - I'm anything but bored, we're learning a bit about how to saw up trees and make stuff. So glad the world has moved on - it's dreadful stuff but fun learning to work with it, much easier than metal.
And there's no shortage of old tin to go at when we get back to it. The engine cover is a bit of a disaster zone so we'll begin with that. Hope to see on a beach near here soon and make sure you bring your buddies so we can sit in the pub and not mention the war.
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Re: Coniston Bye laws/Ruskin

Post by Renegadenemo »

If I become a lone voice so be it, because I can, it seems, write operating protocol that the Scottish Authorities understand.
It's me who's the lone voice but that's fair - if we do get the word to go on Coniston I'll be grafting as hard as anyone to make it happen because I get to have fun with the team - like I said, doesn't matter where. But I have a feeling your Scottish protocols will be needed first. We'll need another crew training exercise before we tackle Coniston.
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Re: Coniston Bye laws/Ruskin

Post by Richie »

Malcolm Ops wrote:
Thu Jul 30, 2020 4:17 pm
Renegadenemo wrote:
Thu Jul 30, 2020 12:51 pm
Many people want to see K7 run on Coniston Water. I admit that would be cool but speaking only for myself here and not necessarily on behalf of other team members, it doesn't bother me one way or the other. Scotland is just as good. It's running the machine and working with the team that does it for me and it doesn't matter where that happens but if that's what everyone wants I'm in 100%.
My role was to get the Coniston Water Byelaw amended and the opportunity for Cumbria to have the Proving Trial on Coniston Water (two years assisting with the BEWG). I loved Loch Fad and the Isle of Bute in 2018 (and I have been back for one holiday since then), but to me K7 needs to be run on Coniston Water.

If I become a lone voice so be it, because I can, it seems, write operating protocol that the Scottish Authorities understand.

Personally for me she needs to run on Coniston, but that can’t be the end of it (so to speak)

Gina spoke of taking it to Australia / USA etc which I was very onboard with at the time, visiting where K7 had previously been and raising Donald’s profile globally seemed quite fitting.

Given we had access to large hold space aircraft, it was entirely plausible too.


This is all moot until paperwork has been satisfied, be it through the courts or otherwise...... and none of that will be remotely possible until Mr H stops trying to undermine the process....Weighty Weighty catch a monkey indeed. :roll:


I have a romantic notion moving forwards that this whole debacle can be turned around, it’s not too late yet for people to build bridges.
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Re: Coniston Bye laws/Ruskin

Post by Filtertron »

Renegadenemo wrote:
Mon Jul 27, 2020 2:52 pm
Filtertron wrote:
Mon Jul 27, 2020 6:24 am
The Qualcast Kid sounds like Wile E. Coyote from the Looney Tunes. Every time he tries to catch the Roadrunner, he fails miserably.
It is a bit like that but at least Wile E. Coyote is up front with his schemes. You know, a big box of TNT from the ACME store, that sort of thing.
You did say you could see him coming. Regardless, this thread has been an eye-opener. It is only my opinion, but as soon as K7 was signed over to the museum, any negotiations/dialog regarding the boat should have been between the museum and the BBP only. DMC's family should have been kept out of it.

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Re: Coniston Bye laws/Ruskin

Post by Renegadenemo »

You did say you could see him coming. Regardless, this thread has been an eye-opener. It is only my opinion, but as soon as K7 was signed over to the museum, any negotiations/dialog regarding the boat should have been between the museum and the BBP only. DMC's family should have been kept out of it.
We always included Gina as a respectful gesture but you're right, they gave away their wreckage, twice. But unfortunately, the Qualcast Kid has always entertained thoughts of putting his greedy mitts on the big blue cash-cow and was most annoyed when Gina gave it away in 2006. That's what he used as misdirection when trying to slide the 2019 deed under the radar - that Gina hadn't properly given the wreck away, so he was going to do it properly this time only in his version there was no such thing as the BBP - not that that made any difference.
In her defence, Gina didn't like being used as his excuse and refused to have anything to do with it but The Kid was ready for such an eventuality and arranged that it could be signed on behalf of a majority - by himself. So it was duly drawn up, he signed it then he left the museum to pay a fortune for about the most worthless document ever created.
This is all moot until paperwork has been satisfied, be it through the courts or otherwise...... and none of that will be remotely possible until Mr H stops trying to undermine the process....
Indeed - in his short tenure Mr. H has done a colossal amount of damage, to the legend, to the goodwill of many people and to Gina herself. I mean, what sort of a bloke stands by and watches his partner totally destroy her own reputation without whispering, 'watch it' in his pillow talk? So now if there is a mediation we won't be inviting any of them to contribute unless there's been much righting of wrongs. The museum can, that's their prerogative, but after what we were subjected to in January any respect is gone and I speak for a lot of people there.
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'Sometimes you gotta be an S.O.B if you wanna make a dream reality' Mark Knopfler

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