Inspection of council accounts

From September 1 to October 12, the Bristol City Council accounts can be questioned and are open to audit. See the following link for information:

I sent in my request for invoices and reports this morning in order to assess whether the statement of accounts needed to be challenged.

I am writing to request invoices and reports associated with the statement of Bristol City Council’s accounts for the year ended March 31 2020. I would like to receive them electronically. 

I attach a list of 960 entries from the £500+ spending spreadsheets provided by the council. Do let me know if you have any questions about this.

Please provide any invoices attached to the City Office or City Mayor cost codes where they have not been provided in the £500-spend spreadsheets.

Impact Social related

In addition to providing the invoices for the company Impact Social, please provide all reports associated with them (invoices #621-630) in the attached spreadsheet.

L&G related

In July 2019, at Cabinet, the council approved the following in relation to an agreement with L&G for the land at Temple Island:

  • the Council approved entering into an Agreement for Lease  
  • Cabinet approved a project budget of up to £0.5m to support the development of proposals for the Temple Island site. This funding to be utilised for internal BCC staff time and fees, professional consultancy fees, site and survey work and including an appropriate contingency allowance  

In February 2020, the cabinet approved the following:

  • the Council entering into conditional agreements and an agreement for lease
  • the allocation of £2m to the G&R Directorate to support the development of the project  

Please provide the following in relation to the above [from July 2019 and February 2020]:

  • the conditional agreements and the Agreement for Lease with, and in relation to, L&G
  • Any invoices associated with the initial £500,000 project budget in relation to BCC staff time and fees on this project, professional consultancy fees, site and survey work, and any invoices for ‘appropriate contingency allowances:
  • Any invoices and reports associated with the £2m allocated in February to the G&R directorate.

If you need any further information then please let me know. I am a Bristol resident and a member of the NUJ.
Best regards,


Link to the attachment I sent: Let me know if you have any trouble viewing it.

This is the second time I have asked to inspect Bristol City Council’s accounts but last year I was deemed to have asked without providing a reasonable amount of time so the request was denied.

Update: 10.57am

I’d forgotten to include the EY reports on Bristol Energy and City Leap so have requested those too.

Apologies for the additional email — I left out four transactions, which I attach to this email. They are numbered consecutively in addition to the previous spreadsheet: 961 to 964.
I would like to see the invoices, project briefs and reports of these four invoices.

Will the council be spending another £90k on monitoring mentions of the mayor on social media?

“The Council is planning to develop additional Deliberative Democracy work in 2020/21 to further strengthen public engagement,” states the Q4 Performance Report that is going to scrutiny in July. Previous ‘democracy work’ by the council has meant the mayor paying £90k of public funds to check what people were saying about him on Twitter. I thought I should follow-up.

The email to democratic services has been published below. The rest of the post is a roundup of some highlights.

The Overview and Scrutiny Management Board is meeting on 8 July 2020 and the agenda is available here.

The last item is the Performance Report (PR) for Quarter 4. It includes various interesting updates.

Air Quality — As XR activists sit on top of City Hall and are ignored by the mayor, we learn that the number of deaths attributable to air quality have increased since 2017.

SEND — The targets for Education and Health Care Plans are well-below target with only 10 being issued within 20 weeks. This does not mention the quality of the plans or whether they will be appealed, and if indeed they mean that the child has a school place.

The Affordable housing target is well-below what was desired. Only 113 affordable houses build in Q4.

The Housing Festival Ltd gets a mention [or is it Monastery 2.0?].

The council are apparently benefiting to a sum of over £500k on the work that it has been doing. Note that the Housing Festival has so far been paid £225k by Bristol City Council with only £115k of that from a WECA grant for innovation.

I would have liked to ask a few questions of OSMB but was limited to two. i chose to ask about Impact Social and deliberative democracy because I have lodged a complaint with the ICO about the refusal of my subject access request by the council, and about the council’s lack of GDPR notice.

Hi Democratic Services,

In the Performance Report published for the OSMB meeting, the text to item:WC4 BCP533 Increase the percentage of people who feel they can influence local decisions (QoL) states the following: ” the Council is planning to develop additional Deliberative Democracy work in 2020/21 to further strengthen public engagement.”

Residents already know about the £90,000 paid to Impact Social for monitoring social media (with no clear GDPR specification), and the £8000 a year to Delib Democracy for a platform for the Citizens Panel. In addition to the Quality of Life Survey, would you please let me know:

1. What is the additional Deliberative Democracy work in 2020/21?

2. Whether the Impact Social contract is being cancelled or renewed in September 2020?

You can see further information about Impact Social at this link:

Thank you,


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