Mystery blogger backs Suffolk unitary

A MYSTERY blogger is intriguing councillors and officers at the Endeavour House headquarters of Suffolk county council, who have found an Internet ally in the war of words over the future of local government.

Graham Dines

A MYSTERY blogger is intriguing councillors and officers at the Endeavour House headquarters of Suffolk county council, who have found an Internet ally in the war of words over the future of local government.

Unitary Suffolk, a clandestine cyberspace nerd, has jumped on board the county council's preferred option of One Suffolk - the abolition of the county and seven districts to be replaced by one giant unitary authority to look after all council-run services in the county.

A blog is on-line diary full of gossip and invites people to add their comments. It is growing in popularity across the globe among Internet users Anyone who is anyone has one - Government ministers, MPs, councillors, political activists and analysts, journalists, lobbyists, and angry young men and women.

Blogspot is a popular vehicle to host blogs and it's the site chosen by Unitary Suffolk, the champion of the county Tory leadership's audacious plan for just one council in Suffolk which would save millions of pounds by eliminating duplication.

Unitary Suffolk posted his or her's first and only blog last week, saying it has been created “to provide a free and open forum to discuss and comment” on a single unitary Suffolk council.

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Unitary Suffolk declares that just one council “is the simplest and cheapest option and will involve the least upheaval and cost. By integrating the seven district and borough councils into the county, there could be savings and services.

The blog ends with the exhortation “Are you listening Boundary Committee?”

But who is the blogger? The style in which it is written suggests it is not a member of the public. It could be a county officer, loyally banging the drum for the county and his employers. Perhaps a councillor is indulging in some internet fun. Whoever it is sending messages does so at irregular times, mostly late at night but also during normal working hours.

The county council denies its fingers have typed the blog. “This is not a blog we have set up or asked for,” said a spokesman.

Unitary Suffolk replies on-line to readers who leave comments. And he or she reveals a political allegiance, taking a swipe at (Gordon) Brown for forcing local government change on the county.

There is censorship. A comment post sent by the East Anglian Daily Times to the blog has not been published, making nonsense of the claim that is a “free and open forum.”

However, the identity of the blogger may soon emerge. There is no such thing as anonymity on the Internet. Specialists know the emails are being sent from a Microsoft Hotmail account. When they find the number attached to the globally unique Internet Protocol address of the blogger's computer, it will tell them to whom it belongs.

The blog can be read on: http://unitarysuffolk,blogspot.com

The mystery blogger

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