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Retired council staff told to hand back gifts. #1005558
29th Mar 2016 9:54pm
29th Mar 2016 9:54pm
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Wallasey/New Brighton
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j_demo Offline OP
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Wirral Council staff told to hand back lifetime leisure passes - http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-merseyside-35919420

The tl;dr is basically - in order to save money, anyone who had over 25 years service and who opted for a lifetime leisure pass instead of vouchers or cash upon retiring has been told to hand back their pass as part of a money-saving thing.

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Re: Retired council staff told to hand back gifts. [Re: j_demo] #1005560
29th Mar 2016 10:18pm
29th Mar 2016 10:18pm
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hagar Offline
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About par for the course for this farce council & why do they still have 5 shift managers @ woodchurch leisure centre when all smaller centres only have 3? & how did 6 people who worked @ one leisure centre all become managers within 2 years?

Re: Retired council staff told to hand back gifts. [Re: j_demo] #1005564
29th Mar 2016 10:58pm
29th Mar 2016 10:58pm
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ludwigvan Offline
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Quite right Hagar, promotion in the Corpy's leisure service has always been a case of whether your face fits and whose buttocks you have osculated. Do you remember a certain Phil Nipples? Membership of his coterie almost guaranteed promotion. Never in the History of Corpy nepotism have so many dim people owed so much to so few.

Re: Retired council staff told to hand back gifts. [Re: j_demo] #1005565
29th Mar 2016 11:22pm
29th Mar 2016 11:22pm
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Birkenhead
diggingdeeper Offline

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While morally I agree that this is completely unfair, it does raise some questions.

Was this retirement gift a contractual obligation, if so I don't see how it can be withdrawn.

If it wasn't a contractual obligation, what the hell are the council doing handing out gifts of this scale to people using OUR money?


We don't do charity in Germany, We pay taxes. Charity is a failure of governments' responsibilities - Henning Wehn
Re: Retired council staff told to hand back gifts. [Re: j_demo] #1005566
29th Mar 2016 11:23pm
29th Mar 2016 11:23pm
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granny Offline
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It doesn't make sense. They are hoping to 'save' in excess of £500,000 by removing free passes for 400 former employees. I assume those figures are against all 400 using the facilities. I bet half of them have kicked the bucket and another half of the half, don't use them anyway.

The council can't save, what they haven't spent !

On those figures, and I assume they are talking about £500,000 over a twelve month period, which would mean that every one of the 400 users would be using the equivalent of £24 per week. Does that seem real ? NO ,it doesn't ! More eye wash, bad accounting or wishful thinking. How much is an 'Invigor8 Pass' each month, about £35 x 400 x 12 ?

Answers on a postcard please.


Humankind has not woven the web of life. We are but one thread within it. Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves. All things are bound together. All things connect.
~Chief Seattle
Re: Retired council staff told to hand back gifts. [Re: j_demo] #1005567
29th Mar 2016 11:36pm
29th Mar 2016 11:36pm
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diggingdeeper Offline

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I think you've hit the nail on the head granny - maybe the council have to pay invigor8 for these free-passes, whether they are used or not, because they have been issued.

The £500,000 does include other cuts such over 65 and under 18 concessions.


We don't do charity in Germany, We pay taxes. Charity is a failure of governments' responsibilities - Henning Wehn
Re: Retired council staff told to hand back gifts. [Re: ludwigvan] #1005568
29th Mar 2016 11:41pm
29th Mar 2016 11:41pm
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Capt_America Offline
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Former employee calls them 'morally bankrupt', local councillor asks 'how does this save money’? I've lost my ability to be surprised by how low this mob & its leadership will stoop to try & save themselves. Mark my words, this has the stamp of the person who wrote a business plan based on 100% occupancy of 5-a-side pitches at the Oval smeared all over it.

Never a truer word said than the phrase ‘if your face fits’.

The so called £500,000 saving is actually an income improvement target. I suppose they think that all ex-employees with a passport for life will be so grateful it's been taken away they will swarm to join the Invigor8 gym membership. ‘Morally bankrupt’? No, delusional in the most intrinsic sense of the word.


See you in cyberspace!
Re: Retired council staff told to hand back gifts. [Re: j_demo] #1005569
29th Mar 2016 11:41pm
29th Mar 2016 11:41pm
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ludwigvan Offline
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I wouldn't worry too much D.D. Very few council workers who have worked 25 years have either the will or the capability to make use of a free leisure pass. They should just feel a deep sense of gratitude to the people of Wirral who have paid their wages and crawl away tugging their forelocks ever so 'umbly.

Re: Retired council staff told to hand back gifts. [Re: diggingdeeper] #1005570
29th Mar 2016 11:57pm
29th Mar 2016 11:57pm
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Capt_America Offline
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Originally Posted by diggingdeeper


If it wasn't a contractual obligation, what the hell are the council doing handing out gifts of this scale to people using OUR money?


It's not 'OUR money'. The passes cost nothing other than the paper they are printed on. It is an alternative to cash or high street vouchers as a retirement gift only given out for long service. It costs nothing for the pass to be used. No money changes hands and it costs the Council absolutely nothing. For people who have retired after long and sterling service this is a kick in the teeth. I’m only surprised they haven’t asked for the high street vouchers back.

Lets not forget they are axing free swimming for pensioners as well. This is a massive blow to the health benefits it generates. It cost them NOTHING to give this concession. Yet someone in an ivory tower thinks the people who enjoy this concession will be flocking back with a handful of tenners to pay for the privilege.


See you in cyberspace!
Re: Retired council staff told to hand back gifts. [Re: j_demo] #1005571
30th Mar 2016 12:48am
30th Mar 2016 12:48am
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Birkenhead
diggingdeeper Offline

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Aren't the running of the Leisure Centres contracted out? Maybe not?

Cheshire leisure centres used to be contracted out to a company with a similar (or identical) name to invigor8 (they are now using a company called "Brio Leisure") which is what led me to think it was contracted out.

If customers of leisure centres cost "nothing" then they could be free to everyone but unfortunately this isn't the case.

There are overheads directly linked to the number of users eg administration, wear and tear, energy use and supervision.

There is also loss of income where a free person is using a facility and a paying person cannot then use it.

Then there is distortion of the planning/availability of resources due to free users.

Extra users will also lead to longer opening hours and the associated costs.

There is no such thing as free!


We don't do charity in Germany, We pay taxes. Charity is a failure of governments' responsibilities - Henning Wehn
Re: Retired council staff told to hand back gifts. [Re: diggingdeeper] #1005582
30th Mar 2016 8:29am
30th Mar 2016 8:29am
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granny Offline
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No, Wirral LC's are not contracted out.

I think you're getting a bit carried away there DD, with the words 'cost nothing' and 'free' and 'wear and tear'. If the centres were being overrun with 'free' admissions maybe you'd be right, but I think they are not.

For example, the pools are full, heated, and staffed, and if not used, then empty. The buildings are heated, the staff are there, the admin is there, anyway. The classes could be different, due to limited spaces, but they are run by trainers for a fixed fee, not the amount of people.

A more profitable idea would be to take away the concessionary memberships for those on low incomes or working tax credits etc. Then you would see the numbers change dramatically. That's mostly what the council tax payer contributes towards.. again, and again, and again. Those on benefits, who get massively reduced council tax, paid for by people like myself who can barely afford to pay my council tax .....but I will have my free pensioner swim taken away, if this goes to plan.

A free lifetime pass I don't think will make any difference and as Captain says, it's a bit of paper or plastic card, no cash involved and the only way of fixing the figures is to include the supposed cost of them on the balance sheets.
A bit like when millions of pounds change hands, the money doesn't physically get passed from one person to another, it all happens on paper.

If that is how they 'fix' their accounts, no wonder they have problems. They had enough dosh to refit all of their gyms etc. in the last few years, and some more than once! Now they cry because they have no money.


Last edited by granny; 30th Mar 2016 8:33am.

Humankind has not woven the web of life. We are but one thread within it. Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves. All things are bound together. All things connect.
~Chief Seattle
Re: Retired council staff told to hand back gifts. [Re: granny] #1005587
30th Mar 2016 9:33am
30th Mar 2016 9:33am
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Posts: 13,999
Birkenhead
diggingdeeper Offline

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Originally Posted by granny
A more profitable idea would be to take away the concessionary memberships for those on low incomes or working tax credits etc. Then you would see the numbers change dramatically. That's mostly what the council tax payer contributes towards.. again, and again, and again. Those on benefits, who get massively reduced council tax, paid for by people like myself who can barely afford to pay my council tax .....but I will have my free pensioner swim taken away, if this goes to plan.


They have already removed most of those discounts.

TBH, they have priced themselves out the market and show undue bias to certain sports in their pricing. A badminton court is £11.50 an hour with no discount for invigor8 members (£34 a month) unless you are an over 50 invigor8 or over 50 Wirral passport member.


We don't do charity in Germany, We pay taxes. Charity is a failure of governments' responsibilities - Henning Wehn
Re: Retired council staff told to hand back gifts. [Re: j_demo] #1005594
30th Mar 2016 12:10pm
30th Mar 2016 12:10pm
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Forgetting the rights and wrongs of pensioners get this, unemployed don't get this, workers pay more as this is not the issue.

The issue is that workers who have worked in our community for a minimum of 25 years have been screwed over by people who don't understand the real world.

If people think this is correct do they also think it's correct to go back to a child,grand child,parent or friend who you gave an Xmas present too just over 3 months ago to now say sorry moneys tight can you return the gift I gave you so I can sell it to help during these difficult times.

Many who opted for these passes I would presume done so due to health reason's and taking the passes away will incur more costs in other area's (mainly NHS) so it will probably end up costing more in the long run.

Re: Retired council staff told to hand back gifts. [Re: dizdazdoz] #1005608
30th Mar 2016 6:04pm
30th Mar 2016 6:04pm
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fish5133 Offline
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Crikey wbc must really be up the creek without a paddle.how about removing all the free parking and turning council office car parks into pay ones.

Re: Retired council staff told to hand back gifts. [Re: fish5133] #1005611
30th Mar 2016 6:24pm
30th Mar 2016 6:24pm
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granny Offline
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Originally Posted by fish5133
Crikey wbc must really be up the creek without a paddle.how about removing all the free parking and turning council office car parks into pay ones.


An excellent idea, Fish, so long as it wasn't an outside company reaping the rewards. They could accumulate a fair few 'bob' that way, when everyone else has to pay to park their car when working.

By the way, I don't have a swimming pass or any other pass, that was just put in to make it harder. smile Do pay my full council tax though.


Humankind has not woven the web of life. We are but one thread within it. Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves. All things are bound together. All things connect.
~Chief Seattle
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