Monday, 20 May 2019
Thursday, 12 December 2014
First with the news
Updated 15 December 2014

Wexham Park's New Slough Governors

Confusion invalidates 11% of votes in very low 14% turnout

Report and photographs: Paul Janik

Following the highly controversial take-over of Wexham Park & Heatherwood hospitals by Frimley Park hospital, Slough's 5 new 'public' hospital governors were announced late this afternoon:-

  1. Britwell
     37 votes (21%)
  2. Colnbrook
     22 votes (13%)
  3. Langley
     17 votes (10%)
  4. Burnham
     14 votes (8%)
  5. Goodman Park
     13 votes (7%)
  6.       Summary
    103 votes (59%)

Using a Single Transferable Vote ('STV') counting system which eliminates the candidate with the least votes, after 12 re-counts the final results were declared as:-

  1. Margaret Woodley
     29.34 votes (17%)
  2. Petra Kagleder
     28.52 votes (16%)
  3. Julia Long
     27.26 votes (15%)
  4. Sharon O’Reilly
     24.63 votes (14%)
  5. Tamoor Ali
     20.21 votes (11%)
  6.       Summary
    129.96 votes (73.84%)

The Slough electorate was
: 1,401

Total votes
: 197

Invalid votes
: 21

Valid votes
: 176

STV quote
: 29.34

The Slough Times believes the STV quota should actually be 30.34 based on the premise that (valid votes) is divided by (vacancies + 1) and then 1 is added to the result.

21 votes, that could have changed the election results, were rejected because voters voted for more than one first choice candidate.

Other hospital governors elected

Bracknell & Wokingham (23.91% voted)

  • Victoria Browne
  • Jan Burnett
  • Richard Lloyd

South Bucks, Chiltern, Marlow and High Wycombe (26.65% voted)

  • Paul Henry
  • John Ager (UKIP)

Windsor and Maidenhead (26.08% voted)

  • Fiona Dent (Labour Party)
  • Karen Saunders
  • Professor Tony Monk
  • Rod Broad

The remainder of England (8.56% voted)

  • Chris Waller

Frimley Park hospital staff (9.69% voted)

  • Udesh Naidoo
  • Mel Fish

Wexham Park and Heatherwood hospital staff (16.89% voted)

  • Alex Saunders
  • Bob Soin F.R.C.S. M.D.

Despite Frimley Park's senior management having more than a year to organise the de facto commercial take-over of the Wexham Park and Heatherwood hospital trust, the election of new Frimley Health governors, replacing Wexham Park's now defunct hospital governors, appears rushed, disorganised and rather a shambles. Could this shambles be systematic of other problems within the now greatly enlarged NHS successor Trust ?

Will the public be persuaded that name changing from Frimley Park to Frimley Health will improve the failures caused by Wexham Park Trust's aimless and ineffective management ?

Frimley Park, the headquarters of the new Frimley Health NHS Foundation Trust, is 20 miles distance from Wexham Park. It is located on the south side of the M3, near junction 4, and is approximately half-way between Camberley and Farnborough.

At 20:00 hours this evening, none of last Thursday's newly elected hospital governors the Slough Times has spoken to:-

  • had been contact by the hospital to advise them of their election success
  • knew when their 'term of office' starts
  • knew how long they had been elected for

Frimley Park's chief executive Andrew Morris told the Slough Times yesterday:

The appointment duration will normally be three years but Governors can stand again for a maximum period of 9 years. SOLA 011517p14

The Slough Times discovered today the maximum duration for hospital governors elected last week will be either 1 year 10 months or 2 years 10 months. source: Frimley Health NHS Foundation Trust Constitution page 15.

Voting Figures : Failure to engage with the public

The voting figures were absolutely dreadful. Frimley Park's press statement Deadline extended dated 5 November 2014 claimed:

A successful recruitment campaign over the past month has ensured that close to 5,000 members of the public will be eligible to vote in elections for governors to the new Frimley Health NHS Foundation Trust.

Eligible voters, obtained from the official election results, were 4,757note. However 1,121 belong to voters from outside the Wexham Park and Heatherwood catchment area. Frimley Park call these non-local voters The Rest of England.

Eligible voters in the Wexham Park and Heatherwood catchment area were 3,636. This is less than three-quarters (73%) of Frimley Park's bloated claim of 5,000 eligible voters.

Of the 3,636 eligible voters, only 21% (757note) voted. 757 as a percentage of Frimley Park's 5,000 is a pitiful 15%.

Voting Figures : Failure to engage with hospital staff

At Frimley Park Hospital, 4,944 staff were eligible to vote for staff governors. Only 479 (9.7%) voted. 4,465 (90.3%) did not vote.

At Wexham Park 3,879 staff were eligible to vote for staff governors. 655 (16.9%) voted; 3,224 (83.1%) did not.

These disappointing staff voting figures highlight a crisis of staff confidence, staff trust and staff interest of the running of their hospitals.

When 7,689 members of staff, comprising 87% of the combined workforce, declined to vote for staff spokesmen to present their concerns to their employer, something is clearly wrong with the management's attitude to their staff.

We have asked both chief executive Andrew Morris and chairman Mike Aaronson for their explanation ...... both gentlemen appear to be too shy and/or embarrassed to comment. Perhaps their NHS employed Spin Doctors are away on holiday ?

Voting Statistics

    Bracknell & Wokingham
    1,171 :
    valid votes =
    278 (23.7%)
    , invalid votes = 2

    1,401 :
    valid votes =
    176 (12.6%)
    , invalid votes = 21

    South Bucks
    439 :
    valid votes =
    116 (26.4%)
    , invalid votes = 1

    The Rest of England
    1,121 :
    valid votes =
    95   (8.5%)
    , invalid votes = 1

    Windsor & Maidenhead
    625 :
    valid votes =
    163 (26.1%)
    , invalid votes = 0

    4,757 :
    valid votes =
    828 (17.4%)
    , invalid votes = 25

    minus Rest of England
    3,636 :
    valid votes =
    733 (20.2%)
    , invalid votes = 24

Data source : www.uk-engage.org/elections/frimley-health-nhs-foundation-trust-elections/