Open Secret

Dear Bellman

Would you like to know a secret? Stonehaven Leisure Centre is closing for refurbishment. That is not, of course, a secret, as most, if not all, users know that. What is a secret is when the closure will be. The staff at the Centre do not know and, sadly, there are some who have taken it out on the staff because they assume that the staff know. That is not an unreasonable assumption. In my experience, the staff there (unlike in some other areas of the Council) are very helpful and I am not in any doubt that they do not know.

If you were to write to the Council, and if they actually replied, you might get the answer, “soon,” and if you were to follow that up with, “how soon?” the enlightening reply might be “very soon.” 

Like many, I pay monthly though my bank to use the facilities at the Centre. It would be helpful to me to know when the Centre will close and for how long. Of course, I am being unduly demanding and not appreciating that the timing of the closure of the Centre is covered by the Official Secrets Act 1911. If the staff at the Centre knew, they might pass the information on to the customers. How dangerous could that be? It could be even worse, as customers might tell people who do not even live in Aberdeenshire, but the most serious risk is that this information could get into the  possession of making people, like, say, the Russians. If a “freedom of information” request were made, no doubt the Council would find a cogent reason for ensuring that the information is not in the public domain. 

Given my experience with this Council,I would not out too much faith in the information, if it ever comes, about the closure and the length of it.

Yours etc

Douglas Cusine

Tom Hannan - May 20, 2023

Mr Cusine,
You will be visited by a dark limousine at around 0400 tomorrow and taken to a re-education centre in Upper Lower Middle Deeside and Mearns. You may be subjected to dross and newspeak until you are minded to mind a’body’s business but yer ain. Or something or not.
Ye’re no’ allowed to question the acts of them fit’re pit in powers of abuse abin ye!
Haud yersel back…

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