Thursday 12 January 2017

Heckling from Heaven

Don’t Call Me Dave was greatly shocked and deeply saddened to hear of the sudden and unexpected passing of former Councillor Daniel Hope, aged just 44.

Daniel was the father of Barnet’s bloggers, being one half of the original Statler & Waldorf blog  "Heckling from the Balcony", although he never formally admitted to his participation in what is still the gold standard of satirical and investigative blogging that many others have tried, and failed, to emulate.

Daniel was a passionate believer in open and transparent government, local and national: a principled stand that made him many enemies within the higher echelons of Barnet Council, where the culture of secrecy and obfuscation is ingrained into every fibre of its being. Indeed, the way that he was treated by some of his so called Council colleagues was nothing short of a disgrace, effectively forcing him out of the Council and the Conservative Party; not that this ever stopped him campaigning for a Conservative government and the pursuit of proper Conservative policies.

When DCMD started his own Blog, Daniel provided much needed technical support with the preparation of pictures and videos. In recent years, Daniel tirelessly attended council meetings to record them for the Barnet Bugle. He asked the questions which Councillors were often too lazy or scared to ask for themselves.

Daniel’s legacy will be that he stood up for what he believed in, and would not be bullied into silence or submission, as were so many councillors seeking to climb the greasy pole of higher allowances. If there is a God, now would be a good time for the Almighty to get His books in order as there will be some Freedom of Information requests landing in heaven's in-box shortly.

Daniel is survived by his mother and sister, to whom DCMD sends his condolences.