Thanet Star

Was the Pleasurama Planning Approval something Sandy got away with?

This weekend reporter Thomas Brown reported doubts over funding for the Pleasurama site in Ramsgate but was Sandy's involvement here just as shady as the one that took him to prison for a year and a half?

Back in June 2009 chief executive Sue McGonigal wrote a report exposing uncertainty over the SFP Ventures UK's ability to complete the 22 million build at the Pleasurama site. she apparently wrote that proof of funding was not possible but (now convicted) ex-leader Sandy Ezekiel lead the cabinet in recommending the project to the council for approval anyway. Why, one wonders, would he do that if not for personal gain of some sort?

SFP Ventures UK wants to build a 60-bed hotel and another 107 apartments on the site despite having yet to raise even a fraction of the money it needs.

Of course now councillors have spoken of regrets over the decision to sign a development agreement without the slightest proof of available funding or even a hotel operator so much as nominally on board with the project.

Would it be going to far to suggest that the councillors did as they were told by Sandy while nothing-on-paper deals took place in the shadows? After all it is not always the thing a public official is finally nabbed for that is the first thing they do wrong.

Do not get started on the above market value purchase of the Marks and Spenser building under Sandy...

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