Saturday, 18 April 2009

City Council's £12,000 subsidy to local foodies

In times of recession, money becomes tight and a little help to pay the bills is obviously welcome.
Even better, it would be great if you could find a fairy godmother who could say "look, I know things are a bit tight, so let's forget about the bills for the moment" and wave a magic wand and the bills disappear.

Well, if you live in Bristol good news, it appears there may be one - Bristol City Council. However there is a problem - it doesn't apply to the poor sods who actually pay the council's taxes.

BUT, apparently, if you are a food retailer who sells high quality food aimed at well-heeled foodie fashionistas who like to hold dinner parties where they can say "we source our food from the same people who supply Gordon Ramsay doncha know" then you appear to be in luck.

Taste opened in a fanfare of publicity and was touted as the feather in the cap of Bristol's award winning St Nicholas market. Despite the fact that they would be competing with the many long-established local suppliers already in the market there was no end to the help provided to help the high-status outfit get started. As the recession has hit, I have been told that that help has now extended to allowing them to "forget" about paying some £12,000 to the City Council, at least until they hit better times. Now isn't that nice.

Yep, so next time you watch Gordon Ramsay on the telly or hear about the over-inflated prices at his top London restaurants, you can take pride that in some small way, Bristol's council tax payers are subsidising the restaurant bills of London's social elite.


  1. They are very clever, csj planning. On another page they boast:

    "CSJ Planning converted 4,300 sqm of food superstore permission into the 6,300 sqm Bodmin non food retail park with 265 car parking spaces."

    We could all do with friends like that, no?

  2. such a pretty picture they have of their work in bodmin too.

  3. I suspect that as the recession bites, there will be quite a few more instances of "friends" calling in favours from those holding the public purse strings.

    As we speak I am hearing details of some "negotiations" regarding whether a particularly attractive brownfield site earmarked for housing might be better utilised as a supermarket - because, of course, we need more supermarkets rather than decent homes.