In a previous post I spoke about how one councillor had stood her ground and called out Albright and Wilson regarding their obscene pollution and smell blighting the local area of Oldbury. It’s just surprising she wasn’t replaced with a Stepford clone. There is no doubt at this time that disparity between the sexes and racial diversity in local politics was prominent.
Unfortunately the then Chairman of the Oldbury health committee- (the origin of the pollution affecting residents across the wider West Midlands), appeared impassive but linking the company with the council as though they were almost one and the same. We learn the following from this 8th May 1957 Birmingham Post article.
A follow up article appeared in The Birmingham Post on 23 August 1957: “£100,000 to end smell at Oldbury.”
This piece, is I am afraid yet more typical Public relations spin, and a reaction to what had obviously taken them by surprise- a comrade (Mrs Gunn) not on side and prepared to speak out.
Supposedly the firm would be spending a large amount of money to basically prevent ill health that they were causing and perpetuating a statutory nuisance. Of course one could ask serious questions of this Oldbury council in that it totally failed to achieve its basic function- protecting public health of its citizens. As has been evidenced in other articles– this dire health situation had been going on for over eight years under the chairmanship of one man. Did anyone call for his resignation?
Unfortunately, and as I have learned, local authorities protect business polluters and put them first, with the smell of lucre operating in unison. A “joint” statement had been arrived at stating that the smell would be dealt with and that any thereafter would be as a result of “occasional mishap”. This isn’t really anything different to what Albright and Wilson had been claiming for years- yet the smell had persisted.
This is also a typical PR ploy. Contain the current disaster, and present a pretty picture of the future and talk of “lessons learnt” etc. “The destructive power of the fumes” could not however be easily contained. Not only would the application take nearly a year to complete, but only disperse the existing pollution to a higher level- so that’s alright then.
Though no name is mentioned in this second piece, one figure mentioned in the many previous articles is that of the Health Committee Chairman- one Samuel Thomas Melsom– a former mayor (1951-3) and Alderman of Olbury Council. Melsom had a long career as a local legislator, and was a leader of the Labour controlled authority and served on the powerful planning committee and public works commitee and as mentioned in the article- the health committee. He was also a JP and served on the Worcestershire health committees outside the area. He was awarded an OBE “For public services in Oldbury, Worcestershire” in 1955.
And that is where my appreciation of him ends. Let’s divert for a while away from the smell of chemicals and focus on the stench of business/political back slapping.
This was still an era where businessmen could buy their way into the legislator framework and where civic society revolved around the rolling up of trouser legs and funny hand shakes. Businessmen were awarded “freemen” status like confetti, and there was no better time than at coffin carrying ceremonies where the civic dignitaries could all gather together to pay eulogy to one of their own self important pompous cretins demise.
Such an occasion of a passing reveals more about Melsom when W. W Hackett– a much feted son of Oldbury popped his clogs a few years later in 1964.
Here is what we learn about Melsom’s connection to his former boss, loving Walter, and the chemical industry in Oldbury.
Accles and Pollock were another Oldbury firm in the mould of Albright and Wilson. Like Albright and Wilson they left behind an old marlhole mess lake of acid in Shidas lane in Oldbury that has now been infilled by Mintworth, who have desires to do the same with Rattlechain. Small world eh?
AP had connections with AW and it is stated in this article from The Birmingham post that amongst the many attendees at this shin dig were Ken Wilson of the founder family.
Just four years earlier (what a coincidence), Wilson, Melsom and Hackett had all been awarded “freeman” status, perhaps the letters “so” were missing. :-P. Another named Robbins– whom I believe had followed in a long line of others in the family with a man named Urban Robbins having worked for Albright and Wilson in the 19th Century, also received this honour with them. .
It is this pomposity and white pride hidden behind false “industrial heritage” and civic life that really pisses me off the most about how these characters amongst others have been paraded and cemented in fake history archives throughout history. We have to endure their statues, their pictures in ceremonial robes, their busts, their blue plaques, the street names named after them and worst of all the nepotism – just about everything that puts us in a position of inferiority to those who could buy power and position. Homage to our “betters”. No one really cares about these self appointed “community leaders” or “business leaders” in life or death, but to these people in their circles of position this meant everything- as does that word “legacy”.
For some reason the civic firm- operating like a controlling mafia includes not just the political family dynasty facilitators and council officer lackies but businessmen ,the press, the local police and judiciary. We are being controlled by these bastards to the present day, and their ceremonies, their parades, their customs and fake history continue to control all our lives by their design in some form of debt.
Melsom, I believe in his position on health committees was one of those who ensured our water supplies are regulated with a poison that Albright and Wilson and his mate Wilson offloaded as a waste product. For some reason however he resigned as Labour leader in Oldbury at short notice for “personal reasons” in June 1964. Who knows, perhaps a Bill Thomas moment or a Brutas plot?
But not long after this resignation, we get this, and learn that Melsom turned “traitor” amongst the comrades facing possible expulsion and accepted a continued chairmanship of the two committees on the new CON/LIB pact administration.
On returning to the Oldbury smell of Albright and Wilson, it didn’t end however, unlike Melsom’s career shillery for local business and his own self preservation. This article below from December 5th 1957 sums up both his failed administration and chairmanship, and the firm of Albright and Wilson, when it is claimed that the latter’s factory pollution causing the smell will now be dumped into the North Sea! What a great environmental solution.
Melsom appears here as the company advocate- because I have absolutely no doubt he was their longstanding boy and fixer in the community. A man Friday servant of the Oldbury chemical industry illuminati. The “watery grave”, I believe would not be the North Sea at all- why would they transport all the crap of their operations to Scotland for dumping when they had at their disposal two local tips- one “watery” in the Tividale area?
At this particular time in history, Tividale lay in Rowley Regis (Staffordshire)- controlled by a different council– and outside of Melsom’s reach- though it would of course transfer back at a later date (1966) into “Warley”. It would however in 1957 have got it out of “Oldbury” and away out of plain site of his and Albright and Wilson’s back yard. Also of course away from Mrs Gunn’s withered bush and washing. A win-win situation for all surely?
Barrels of waste are admitted to have been dumped for many years into rattlechain lagoon, as well as The Gower Tip. I have seen them myself and some were recovered during the joke “clean up works” of 2013. I have no doubt that “the Oldbury Smell” from the oil additives plant went there, and still lies beneath the water, sunk out of sight and linked to all the other white phosphorus contaminated waste which joined it.
People like Melsom show that politics is possibly the only dirtier business in history than Albright and Wilson, but really they are just inextricably linked.