BBC BLOGS - Open Secrets
« Previous | Main | Next »

Ministers decide

Martin Rosenbaum | 13:27 UK time, Monday, 2 July 2007

When in 2005 John Prescott approved the controversial Vauxhall Tower development - a tower block to be built overlooking the River Thames in central London - he was acting against the advice of his officials.

We now know that thanks to information released today by the Department for Communities and Local Government. The Department had refused to disclose these documents, but was forced to following an important decision last month by the Information Tribunal under the Environmental Information Regulations.

This decision was another significant marker on the path towards the opening up of some official advice to ministers.

Of course it doesn't mean that Prescott was wrong to take the decision he did, or necessarily right either. As noted below, advisers advise and ministers decide. And sometimes decision-taking ministers are right to overrule their advising officials. But whether right or wrong, the decisions and the advice will sometimes now be less in the shadows than before - unlike anyone who lives next to Vauxhall Tower.

Comments   Post your comment

This post is closed to new comments.

More from this blog...

Latest contributors

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.