Can't blame trust for contractors and tendering

Published: Monday, 05 December 2022

WHILE I agree with Victor that putting the maintenance of the waterways in the hands of contractors was the worst decision ever, I cannot wholly blame Canal & River Trust for that decision, writes Giles Williams.

When the waterways were privatised (*ahem*, put in the hands of a charitable trust) one aspect of conservative policy was forced on the trust, any part of the trust's processes that might be reorganised would have to be put out to competitive tender, and the trust would not be permitted to consider continuing those activities 'in-house'.

ConceivedTrustForced competitive tendering

This forced competitive tendering, which has ruined other public utilities, is now in turn ruining the waterways. But it makes a pretty penny from the public purse for the contracting companies run by conservative cronies.

We can put the responsibility for this with the faces above, especially Michael Fabricant, MP (Con)—who was there when the trust was conceived, and who conceitedly takes credit for its few successes while washing his hands clean of any blame for its failings.