Request status of £940,700 ERDF Grant to develop weirpower

Mike Post made this Freedom of Information request to Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead

This request has been closed to new correspondence from the public body. Contact us if you think it ought be re-opened.

The request was successful.

Dear Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead,

The minutes of the RBWM Sustainability Panel on 13 November 2012 confirm that the RBWM Cabinet on the 24 October 2012
had given delegated authority to accept a £940,700 (European Regional Development Fund) ERDF grant to support development of hydropower, which had been match funded by
SouthEast Power Engineering Ltd (SEPEL) and the Environment Agency.

The minutes of the Big Society Panel meeting of 15 May 2013 record:

53/12 ASSESSMENT ON THE BIG SOCIETY’S WORK PROGRAMME

The Panel considered the report on the Assessment on the Big Society’s Work Programme and noted that the report assessed the progress on the Big Society projects. Using specific criteria from Lord Wei’s, Government Advisor, Big Society report it was proposed that some items be removed from the Council’s project portfolio as they have ‘business as usual’. The report also recommended the addition of other projects. The three projects proposed to be removed were Weir Power; Guildhall Museum and Braywick Nature Park.

The Environment Agency reports that the Romney Weir Archimedean screws are producing lower than design power because of low water flow. The developer reported an output of two-thirds of design capacity.

A video of the Romney Weir Archimedean screws taken on 17 June 2013 before they were commissioned shows them rotating at about 23 RPM:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BJ2sr1iMtTI

A video of the same screws taken on 14 October 2013 shows them rotating at about 13 RPM:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FXHRtNulVWw

Can you please confirm the status of the £940,700 ERDF grant for which the RBWM applied in 2012 to support the development of weirpower? Has the grant been awarded? If so, when?

Thank you, in anticipation.

Yours faithfully,

Mike Post

Chris Daniels, Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead

Dear Mr Post

 

I am writing to acknowledge receipt of your request for information.

 

It has been allocated reference FOI65547

 

The Freedom of Information Act provides public authorities with 20 working
days to process requests.

 

This period expires on 15 November 2013

 

 

In addition to sending our response directly to you, please be advised
that RBWM publishes all requests and responses on its website –
requestor’s details are not published.

 

Regards

 

 

Chris Daniels

Information Management Officer

Legal Services

Operations Directorate

Royal Borough of Windsor & Maidenhead

Town Hall, St Ives Road

Maidenhead SL6 1RF

 

 

 

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David Davies, Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead

Dear mike

 

Further to your Information request FOI65547 please find your questions
and our responses below

 

Can you please confirm the status of the £940,700 ERDF grant for which the
RBWM applied in 2012 to support the development of weirpower? Has the
grant been awarded? If so, when?

 

Response: The answer is – No, the grant application was declined

 

If you are unhappy with the information we have provided in response to
your request please write to:

 

Information Management Team Manager

Royal Borough of Windsor & Maidenhead

Town Hall, St Ives Road

Maidenhead

SL6 1RF

 

or send an e-mail to [email address].uk 

 

We are proud to be one of the leading authorities in England for
consistently responding to information requests within the 20 working days
set down by statute. Information about our performance and summaries of
requests received can be found on our website:

 

[1]http://www.rbwm.gov.uk/web/foi_informati...

 

 

We are keen to hear about your experience with the Information Management
Team here at the Royal Borough of Windsor & Maidenhead and look forward to
receiving any comments you have about the way your information request was
processed.

 

Please send any feedback to the Information Management Team Manager either
by e-mail [email address] or in writing to the address above.

 

 

Yours sincerely

 

David Davies

Information Management Officer

Legal Department

Corporate Directorate

Royal Borough of Windsor & Maidenhead

Town Hall, St.Ives Road

Maidenhead SL6 1RF

 

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Dear David Davies,

Thank you for informing me that the grant application was declined.

Yours sincerely,

Mike Post

Dear Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead,

Under the Environmental Information Regulations 2004, a public authority holding the requested information has a duty to communicate that information to the requester as soon as possible and no later than 20 working days after the date of receipt of the request.

On 17 October 2013, I submitted the following EIR to the RBWM headed, “Request status of £940,700 ERDF Grant to develop weirpower” - Can you please confirm the status of the £940,700 ERDF grant for which the RBWM applied in 2012 to support the development of weirpower? Has the grant been awarded? If so, when?

The council responded to my request on the 21st day on 15 November 2013 in the following terms: “ The answer is – No, the grant application was declined.”
However, the Environment Agency which was a partner in the RBWM’s ERDF grant application has just advised me: “We received an e-mail from RBWM informing us on Wed 16/10/2013 at 16:10hrs.”

Under the law, the RBWM was obliged to inform me of the information to which I was entitled as soon as possible. Since the RBWM provided the Environment Agency with the information that I requested on 16 October 2013, the day after I had made my request, why did the RBWM ignore the legal requirement to advise me of the information as soon as possible?

Is there any good reason why I should not complain to the Information Commissioner?

Yours faithfully,

Mike Post

Martin Tubbs, Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead

Dear Mr Post

I am writing to respond to your e-mail.

I am sorry that the time taken by us to provide a response to your request did not meet your expectations. You will be aware that the Environmental Information Regulations 2004, like the Freedom of Information Act 2000, provide public authorities with 20 working days to respond to requests.

We have processed more than 1000 requests so far this calendar year and, on all but three occasions, have delivered a response either on, or before, the statutory deadline. I have been informed by others that our performance is better than most and we are proud of the performance standard we consistently achieve.

With regard to your particular request my team were unaware that the person to whom we had sent the request was absent on compassionate leave. Our normal process is to provide a date to our colleagues by when we require a response - if we don't get one we start chasing. It was only towards the end of the 20 day period that we were advised of the circumstances and immediately escalated the request. You received your reply on the day we were provided with it.

Kind regards

Martin Tubbs
Information Management Team Manager
Royal Borough of Windsor & Maidenhead

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Dear Mr Tubbs,

Thank you for your reply and I am sorry to note that the RBWM's response to me was affected a member of your staff being on compassionate leave.

However the absence of information on what is a very contentious matter in Marlow is a serious matter, involving as it does the projected despoilation of Marlow's environment.

I should therefore like to draw your attention to my request to which you ascribed the reference ER65677 which I should like answered:

Dear Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead,

You have recently successfully responded to my request FOI65547

You responded at the very last minute when the law requires you to
reply expeditiously.

Can you please advise me when the Council became aware that its
ERDF grant application for its project to develop weirpower in the
South East had been refused.

Can you please supply me with the reasons why the application was
refused.

Can you please supply me with all internal communications at the
council with regard to my FOI request to explain to me why it took
so long to respond to my simple enquiry.

Thank you in anticipation.

Yours faithfully,

Mike Post

Thank you in anticipation.

Yours faithfully

Mike

Yours sincerely,

Mike Post

Martin Tubbs, Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead

Sorry but I am now away from the office until Friday morning.

My mailbox is not being monitored.

Martin

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Martin Tubbs, Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead

Dear Mr Post

Thank you for your e-mail.

The request (ER65677) is in the 'sausage machine' but I have reminded
Planning about your request and the statutory deadline of 16/12/2013.

Regards

Martin Tubbs

Royal Borough of Windsor & Maidenhead

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Dear Martin Tubbs,

Many thanks.

Kind regards

Yours sincerely,

Mike Post

Dear Martin Tubbs,

Thank you.

Yours sincerely,

Mike Post

Martin Tubbs, Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead

Sorry but I am now away from my desk until Monday 16 December and my
mailbox is not being monitored.

If you have sent me an e-mail that is related to an information request
please re-send it to [RBWM request email]

Regards

Martin

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