The Empire Strikes Back

And a bloody good thing, too. Would that more institutions, businesses and public services could follow the lead:


From the Telegraph:
The chairman of the National Trust has resigned amid a growing revolt among its members over the charity's "woke" policies.

Tim Parker's decision to quit was announced just 24 hours after a rebel group of members set out plans to force him out at this year’s annual general meeting.

Members, MPs and ministers have grown increasingly concerned over the Trust's leadership after it published report last September into the links between its properties - including the home of Winston Churchill - and the UK’s colonial and slavery past.

The highly critical rebel motion at this year's AGM, which has not yet been submitted - is understood to have been backed by more than 50 members - said the "membership has no confidence in Tim Parker as chairman of the National Trust and asks that he offer his resignation."

It added: "It is the task of a chairman to see an organisation through a crisis. The pandemic has presented the National Trust with severe challenges, and meeting these while securing the future well-being of the charity should have been the absolute priority.

"Instead, the National Trust has been the subject of debates in Parliament and an investigation by the Charity Commission, which found that the charity published a report which generated strongly held and divided views without fully managing the risks to the reputation of the charity.

"The director-general has admitted that the timing of the publication of the 'Interim Report on the Connections between Colonialism and Properties now in the Care of the National Trust, Including Links with Historic Slavery' was 'a mistake'."

Morale at Trust at all-time low​

The motion continued: "The National Trust leadership has frequently been out of step with its members and supporters over recent years.

"Unnecessary controversies have threatened to undermine the charity’s simple duty to promote public enjoyment of buildings, places and chattels under its protection.

"As a result, morale among volunteers and members is at an all-time low and the National Trust has suffered, both financially and reputationally.

"The National Trust needs to regain the nation’s confidence, and will need fresh leadership to achieve this."

Following widespread criticism of its report last September into the links between its properties and the UK's colonial and slavery past, the Charity Commission opened a "regulatory compliance case" and the heritage minister told Parliament that the report was "unfortunate" and the Trust should go back to its "core functions".

At last November’s virtual annual meeting, Mr Parker came under fire after he described Black Lives Matter, which in the UK has called on the government to "defund the police", as a "human rights movement with no party-political affiliations" in a letter to a member.

Speaking at the meeting he said "we are not members of BLM", adding that he hoped members would see "that in no way the Trust has become a political organisation that has been taken over by a bunch of woke folk or anything of that nature".

There was further controversy in 2017 when it emerged that the Trust had tried to force volunteers at a Norfolk mansion to wear the gay pride rainbow symbol on lanyards and badges. The Trust later dropped the demand.

Chairman’s position was ‘untenable’​

A spokesman for Restore Trust told The Telegraph: "We are pleased that Mr Parker has decided to resign as National Trust chairman, following the publication of our motion of no confidence in him that would have been put to this year’s Annual Meeting.

"His position was clearly untenable given everything that has happened and the current crisis of confidence in the National Trust amongst its staff, volunteers and members."

"What the National Trust needs now is a chair with a deep understanding and appreciation of our nation’s heritage.

"We also call on the Board of Trustees to make this an open and accountable process so that their shortlist of potential candidates is published and they present themselves and their proposals for the Trust to members in open events in the coming months.

In a statement posted on the National Trust’s website last night, the charity said Mr Parker had "informed trustees of his decision the day after the Trust’s houses reopened to the public on 17 May, and will step down in October this year".

The chairman of the Trust is an unpaid role and is the most senior of the charity’s 50,000 volunteers.

Mr Parker had served two three-year terms and agreed to a "third exceptional term" to provide stability during the Covid-19 crisis which hit visitor numbers.

The charity said: "The search for Tim’s successor had begun before the pandemic arrived, but was halted to provide stability to the organisation. It will now resume."

Mr Parker said: "It has been an immense privilege to serve the Trust for seven years as Chair and, as we emerge from the pandemic, the time is now right for the search to begin for my successor."

Earlier this year Mr Parker, who is also chairman of the Post Office, said he was "extremely sorry" for "historical failures" which led to the wrongly convictions of 39 sub-postmasters who were wrongly convicted because of mistakes made by a flawed computer system.
 

Yarra

War Hero
Good riddance to bad rubbish. I hope. that in some small way, my Trustpilot review of their/his fookwittery helped to nail the woke drone.
 
Someone had to.
The_empire_strikes_back_newsweek.jpg
 

jmb3296

War Hero
Interesting connection as chair of the Post Office during their debacle in persecuting sub post masters when the evidence was obvious that it was a computer failure at fault.

not a glittering history of unalloyed success under his watch, either at Post Office or National Trust. Both of which were previously viewed as safe uncontroversial bastions of the UK.
 

Bluenose2

Old-Salt
Good!

History (warts and all) needs to be understood, not erased nor revised for the wrong reasons. By doing so, we have an opportunity to better learn from its lessons and understand how our world was formed. That imperative transcends ethnic and generational boundaries.

For me, it's not a choice between celebrating or cancelling the lives of people who questionable motives like Clive or Churchill. It's about studying the effect they had on our world and that of others for good and bad. That process might be inconvenient, embarrassing and complex, but it needs doing.

Some of the most important facts in history (orientalism / westernisation of the Roman Empire springs to mind) have been misunderstood because of political bias or the filter of contemporary society. The British 'establishment' - especially Oxbridge academia - has been very guilty of that in the past, so it's interesting to see them trying to distance themselves from their association with some of the 'villains' they took funding from.

Or maybe i'm just old fashioned and 'my truth' isn't palatable these days.
 
"Earlier this year Mr Parker, who is also chairman of the Post Office, said he was "extremely sorry" for "historical failures" which led to the wrongly convictions of 39 sub-postmasters who were wrongly convicted because of mistakes made by a flawed computer system" . . . .

My goodness . . . . does bad-luck, and incompetence, follow him around . . . or is there some other reason ?!

@Whiskybreath thank you for the Copy&Paste ;) !!
 
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Countryboy

Old-Salt
There was further controversy in 2017 when it emerged that the Trust had tried to force volunteers at a Norfolk mansion to wear the gay pride rainbow symbol on lanyards and badges.

I'm generally quite a calm person, but this kind of thing boils by piss.
As a puff/queer/ -insert colloquial term here - myself, I can't stand this idea that we have to be treated in some different or special way. Just ensure the car park is well-organised and the house is well-presented and I'll enjoy the NT property just like any other person.
Morning rant over.
 

syrup

LE
"Earlier this year Mr Parker, who is also chairman of the Post Office, said he was "extremely sorry" for "historical failures" which led to the wrongly convictions of 39 sub-postmasters who were wrongly convicted because of mistakes made by a flawed computer system" . . . .

My goodness . . . . does bad-luck, and incompetence, follow him around . . . or is there some other reason ?!

@Whiskybreath thank you for the Copy&Paste ;) !!

Strangely while it appears bad luck follows a lot of these people so does a lot of money in the form of large salaries
 

English Heritage labels Enid Blyton’s work ‘racist and xenophobic’​

Famous Five author in charity’s sights as it says it will review all blue plaques for links to 'contested' figures
B39E4F blue plaque marking a former home of enid blyton, popular author of stories for children, located in tolworth, surrey, england

A blue plaque marks the former home of Enid Blyton, in Chessington. An online version of the plaque on an English Heritage app states Blyton’s work has been criticised 'for its racism, xenophobia and lack of literary merit'
Enid Blyton's books have been linked to "racism and xenophobia" in updated blue plaque information produced by English Heritage.
The heritage charity administers the blue plaque scheme, which has installed more than 950 signs in London commemorating historical figures.
English Heritage vowed to review all plaques for links to “contested” figures following Black Lives Matter protests in 2020, stating that objects “associated with Britain’s colonial past are offensive to many”

Blyton’s work has now been linked to racism in updated information on the Famous Five author following the review of historic legacies.
The prolific writer composed more than 700 books after attempting her first work in 1922 at 207 Hook Road in south west London’s Chessington, where she worked as a governess, and where in 1997 a blue plaque was installed in her honour.

Information on the plaque provided online and on an English Heritage app states Blyton’s work has been criticised “for its racism, xenophobia and lack of literary merit”.
Visitors using the official app to learn about blue plaques they encounter in London will be told about the charges against Blyton’s work.
These include the 1966 book The Little Black Doll, with its main character "Sambo", having racist elements because the eponymous doll is only accepted by his owner “once his ‘ugly black face’ is washed ‘clean’ by rain”.
English Heritage’s updated information also cites the occasion her publisher Macmillan refused to publish her story The Mystery That Never Was over its “faint but unattractive touch of old-fashioned xenophobia”, as foreign characters were framed as bad in the book.
Claims that Blyton was “not a very well-regarded writer”, as suggested by the Royal Mint committee for a commemorative coin in 2016, have also been added to the information.
Prior to this update in the wake of Black Lives Matter protests the information simply outlined Blyton’s career, which began when she wrote the poetry collection Child Whispers while working as a governess for Horace and Gertrude Thompson.
She became a prolific writer of best-sellers, including hit series Secret Seven, the Famous Five, the Faraway Tree, Malory Towers, and Noddy before her death in 1968.
The vast bulk of her hundreds of publications was produced before 1960 and certain features such as the “Golliwogs” in Noddy have been changed in later editions to become “Goblins”.
Enid Blyton (left) with her husband Kenneth Waters and daughters Imogen and Gillian (far right) at their home in Beaconsfield

Enid Blyton (left) with her husband Kenneth Waters and daughters Imogen and Gillian at their home in Beaconsfield CREDIT: George Konig/Getty Images
Her work continues to be read, and in a Nielsen BookScan list of the top 20 bestselling children's writers of last ten years, Blyton remained in 11th place ahead of many modern competitors.
English Heritage notes in its new information that some “have argued that while these charges can’t be dismissed, her work still played a vital role in encouraging a generation of children to read”.
The charity's contextualising of Blyton is part of a raft of projects undertaken in the wake of Black Lives Matter protests, including a review of all figures commemorated by the blue plaque scheme.
Anna Eavis, English Heritage’s curatorial director, said in June 2020: “We need to ensure that the stories of those people already commemorated are told in full, without embellishment or excuses.”
The charity said at the time that its priority was to add more information about those “whose actions are contested or seen today as negative”.
The charity has undertaken work to improve representation of groups historically marginalised by the scheme, which was founded in 1866, with its first plaque being dedicated to French emperor Napoleon III.
Plaques honouring BAME historical figures have since been unveiled, following calls from the charity’s former trustee Prof David Olusoga to diversify the scheme.
Plaques, intended to highlight historical properties, must first be nominated by the public before being evaluated by an English Heritage panel.
 

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