Baroness Tessa Jowell – A Tribute

Baroness Tessa Jowell, who famously stated that she would ‘jump under a bus’ for Tony Blair, died on 12 May but not as a result of jumping under a bus. When the news of Tessa’s death was announced, I was so busy researching for this blog that I didn’t have time to write a tribute to her, so here is my belated contribution.

 

Tessa Jane Helen Douglas Palmer was born at the Middlesex Hospital -the alma mater of Gwynne the lobotomist and many of those who concealed his crimes – to Top Doctor Kenneth Nelson Veysey Palmer, a physician and his wife, Rosemary, a radiographer.

Tessa was educated at the independent St Margaret’s School for Girls in Aberdeen, the University of Aberdeen (where she studied arts, psychology and sociology) and the University of Edinburgh (where she studied for an MA in Social Administration). Tessa became a social worker, initially working in the Craigmillar area of Edinburgh and then as a childcare officer in Lambeth, when a paedophile ring was operating within Lambeth Borough Council’s children’s homes. Children were abused in the children’s homes of Lambeth and were also sent on placement to children’s homes in north Wales where they were abused. Complaints were ignored. Social workers in Lambeth had links with paedophiles working in other areas of the UK including in north Wales.

Tessa then trained at Goldsmith’s College as a psychiatric social worker. One of the social work academics at Goldsmith’s was involved in doing as much as possible to clear Hillingdon local authority, the NSPCC, the NHS and the police for the catastrophic cock-ups which led to the death of Heidi Koseda in 1984, the circumstances of which were never adequately explained once Heidi’s mother had been banged up in a high security hospital after suddenly going completely mad as the enormity of the disaster was revealed.

Tessa subsequently worked at the Maudsley. Dr Dafydd Alun Jones and Dr Tony Francis (Dr X) trained at the Maudsley before they worked in north Wales and facilitated the sex trafficking ring there. Tessa was at the Maudsley at about the same time as Tony Francis. Tessa was taught by the Maudsley staff who protected Dafydd and Francis for many years. The Maudsley also concealed paedophile gangs operating in London, in addition to concealing the abuse of children and other vulnerable people by powerful figures who were socially connected to the Top Docs of the Maudsley.

The Maudsley and Dafydd also facilitated the selling and distribution of class A drugs, being assisted in this by Bing Spear, a corrupt mandarin who was for many years until 1986 the most senior Inspector in the Home Office’s Drugs Branch.

Tessa later became Assistant Director of the MIND, a charity in which Dafydd had been a leading light and who in return provided Dafydd with years of faithful service in terms of colluding with the criminality of he and his colleagues. Not that MIND hid its light under a bushel – whilst Tessa was Assistant Director, MIND had links to paedophiles’ rights groups and had held a conference at which the joys of paedophilia was discussed. As a matter of routine MIND remained silent about the abuse of mental health patients by the mental health services, which was and still is rampant.  

Tessa was elected to represent Swiss Cottage on Camden London Borough Council in the early 1970s and became Chair of the Camden Borough Council’s Social Services Committee at the age of 25, which suggests that she did not have the experience needed to do that job properly. At the time Camden Borough Council was concealing the abuse and trafficking of children and mental health patients.

Tessa was elected as MP for Dulwich at the 1992 General Election. One of my friends was a Labour Party activist and agreed to assist with Tessa’s campaign. This friend had just won an unfair dismissal case against the Royal Television Society. She had wanted to make a documentary about what had happened to me in north Wales. She had no idea that Tessa had been involved with the Lambeth and Maudsley branches of the same gang. My friend told me the other day that she felt that the campaign was farcical because Tessa and her supporters were all so posh that it resulted in loudspeakers with very upper class noises emanating from them saying ‘Vote For Tessa Jowell, Vote Labour’.

The same friend cancelled her Labour Party membership in 1997 after Blair invited Thatch to tea and then cut single parents benefits.

‘Vote for Tessa Jowell, Vote Labour, Alienate Your Activists.’

Tessa was successively appointed as an Opposition Spokesperson on Health, an Opposition Whip and Spokesperson on Women, before returning to the Shadow Heath Team in 1996. Throughout this time, the Labour Party – led by John Smith, Margaret Beckett and Blair – concealed the organised abuse of children and mental health patients, including female ones. In 1993 John Smith appointed Ron Davies as Shadow Secretary of State for Wales. Neither Tessa nor anyone else questioned whether that was a suitable appointment for a man who, before he entered the Commons, had been an adviser to Mid-Glamorgan Education Authority while the Education Authority concealed the sexual assaults on pupils committed by drama teacher John Owen.

Tessa was appointed as Minister of State in the Dept of Health after the 1997 Labour landslide. Er – guess what Tessa concealed whilst in that post? Tessa remained in that role until 1999. During Tessa’s time in the DoH, the Waterhouse Inquiry heard evidence of the most dreadful abuse of children in care in north Wales over the previous 20 years. A number of the witnesses were mental health patients.

Tessa moved, again as Minister of State, to the Dept of Education and Employment in 1999. Schools – especially for ‘difficult’ children – were often the sites of abuse, particularly in north Wales. Don’t ever remember Tessa making much of this.

Tessa was appointed Secretary of State at the Department for Culture, Media and Sport after the 2001 General Election, replacing the sacked Chris Smith, an Islington MP who remained silent about the trafficking of children in the care of Islington Council. Chris Smith received much praise from colleagues when he bravely came out as gay and even more praise from them when he bravely came out as being HIV positive. Tessa remained diplomatic and the question ‘Chris, did you ever have sex with any of those numerous young male prostitutes in London who were trafficked into sex work when they were kids in care and who then contracted HIV?’ never passed her lips.

In 2004, Tessa faced resistance to proposals for a series of ‘super casinos’, to be sanctioned as part of the Gambling Act 2005 which liberalised Britain’s gaming laws. In the run up to the Bill, Jowell dismissed much of the criticism as being elitist, commenting that ‘opponents of the Government’s gambling reforms are snobs who want to deny ordinary people the right to bet’.

There may well have been a degree of snobbery involved, but the people that I knew who were horrified at Tessa’s grand plans were worried about gambling addicts sitting in gambling dens while ruthless organisations gobbled up thousands of pounds of punters dosh by the hour. Other people expressed concerns about the involvement of organised criminals in the gambling industry and one person I knew stated that she was worried that brothels would spring up near the super casinos.

I’m glad to say that not everyone with a gambling problem took up residence in a casino, despite Tessa’s encouragement. Many of them are gambling away online losing thousands of pounds in the comfort of their own homes at least until they lose those homes, or are just pushing the boat out on the scratchcards and lottos. It has all served to make Tessa’s fellow peer Benjamin Mancroft a great deal of money.

In March 2005, Jowell announced a new governance system for the BBC, ie. the BBC Trust, to replace the long-established Board of Governors. The Trust was introduced in 2007 but in 2012 was shown to be ‘not fit for purpose’, leading to the resignation of the Director General. As I remember, that resignation had something to do with TV exposes involving a man called Jimmy Savile and the en masse abuse of kids in care in north Wales for years which was covered-up by the Waterhouse Inquiry. Tessa obviously kept quiet about it all at the time to avoid an explosion at the BBC.

In PM Gordon Brown’s reshuffle in June 2007, Tessa was demoted from her position as Secretary of State, but retained her Olympics portfolio. Holding the 2012 Olympics in London was Tessa’s idea and she ended up as the Minister with responsibility for the 2012 Olympics.

In the 2012 Birthday Honours, Tessa became Dame Tessa, in particular for her contribution to delivering the London 2012 Olympics.

There were a great many cock-ups involved in the 2012 Olympics, as well as a vast over-spend. G4S was contracted to provide security and they didn’t, which resulted in more than 1400 troops being deployed to do the job. G4S were however still paid an enormous sum of money for providing security.

The opening ceremony at the Olympics was scripted by Danny Boyle and featured actresses dressed up as archaic nurses bouncing around on vintage beds ‘in tribute’ to the national treasure which is the NHS. Danny Boyle was a student at UCNW (Bangor University) in the 1970s when many of the people facilitating the sex trafficking gang in north Wales worked at UCNW, including clinical psychologists who worked for the NHS as well as for UCNW. Danny’s script did not include Jimmy Savile jumping up and down on a vintage bed, although it was known at the time by many people employed at all levels in the NHS that Savile had sexually assaulted scores of NHS patients whilst carrying out ‘voluntary work’ in NHS hospitals.

Tessa set up the Sure Start programme, stating that ‘I am very proud of setting up Sure Start because the first three years of a child’s life are absolutely critical in determining the chances they have subsequently.’

All analyses of Sure Start showed that although mothers enjoyed the social opportunities that it provided, the programme had no measurable positive effect on any of the outcomes assessed in children who participated. There were also allegations that Sure Start was being hijacked by parents rather more privileged than those for whom it was designed who used it as a socialising and networking opportunity.

In north Wales some ‘disadvantaged single parents’ who enrolled on Sure Start were encouraged to apply for places to train as social workers. At least one of them became a mental health social worker, but felt unable to challenge the abuse of patients that she witnessed because her partner’s history as a drug user was known to the ‘services’ and she knew that this would be used against both of them if she blew the whistle on the misconduct which was endemic. Things became particularly difficult for her when he was admitted to the Hergest Unit in Bangor, which served the patch on which she worked as a social worker. It was completely unacceptable in terms of their confidentiality but she didn’t dare say a word.

Well there’s a novel way that a gang of sex traffickers found to access a source of tame social workers who will be complicit with the abuse of clients.

In May 2015, Tessa launched her campaign to be selected as the Labour Party’s official candidate in the 2016 election for Mayor of London. She reassured everyone that she would win and implied that Sadiq Khan was making a complete idiot of himself by standing against her, as she banged on about her years of Gov’t experience. The broadsheets assisted by publishing numerous ‘profiles’ of Tessa – which were accompanied by photos of her dressed in Barbara Follettesque ‘power suits’ with that patronising social worker’s ‘I know what is best for you’ smile of Tessa’s across her mug – stressing that Tessa was a dead cert to become Mayor.

Tessa’s husband’s daughter from his first marriage, Ellen Mills, is the editorial director of The Sunday Times and Chair of Wimmin In Journalism.

On the day of the count, Tessa was filmed waving and grinning at the TV cameras, stressing how much she was looking forward to hearing the results. I was delighted to see Sadiq Khan win and Tessa leave the room at top speed crying. She did manage to say to a journo that she was leaving because this was Sadiq’s day. Thank goodness for that, I’m not Sadiq’s biggest fan, but the spectre of the smug, stupid former people trafficker presiding over London for the next few years would have been dreadful.

In 2015 Tessa became a peer.

Margaret Hodge is another Strong Woman in the Labour Party who is both a Dame and a Baroness. Like Baroness Dame Tessa, Baroness Dame Margaret also spent many years ignoring, concealing and colluding with a vicious paedophile ring.

In January 2018, Tessa received a standing ovation in the Lords for a speech explaining how she came to be diagnosed with an extremely lethal form of brain cancer. As a result of developing a brain tumour, Tessa became Brave and Inspirational, whereas before she had been merely Passionate and Committed.

Tessa expressed some interesting ideas for research into and treatment of brain cancer. She announced her desire to for ‘adaptive trials’, whereby patients could try one treatment and if it didn’t work after a few weeks, they could try another. Such an approach was fine when one used to be in Woolworths at the Pick n Mix counter, but it isn’t suitable for brain tumours. By definition a course of treatment for cancer takes quite a long while to effect improvement if indeed it works at all. Furthermore the point of an aggressive inoperable tumour is that it grows very fast and kills you quite quickly. As Tessa found out. However Tessa did have the decency to practice what she preached and a few weeks before she died she  appeared in public wearing a magic skull cap that was allegedly sending electrical impulses into her tumour. I mentioned on this blog at the time that this was not going to be an effective treatment.

Unfortunately funding for medical research is frequently dished out on the basis of Inspirational People and to whichever team has managed to fabricate results accompanied by a scientific sounding explanation which will impress a politician with no knowledge of medical sciences. To Tessa, Harriet or Cherie, the phrase ‘we have developed a new way of disrupting the DNA of cancerous cells which can be tailored to the individual’s genetic make up and this will be in the clinic within three years’ sounds rather like the sort of thing that one of those women whom they meet at the Clinique counter – who wear white coats to give the impression that they are in possession of pharmaceutical knowledge – say when they spout rubbish about their skin care products reversing the ageing of one’s DNA. I used to challenge them by saying things like ‘DNA doesn’t work like that’, but it wasn’t very satisfying because they were thick enough to believe the sales patter themselves and just treated me as though I was insane.

The reason why Tessa et al are extra-vulnerable in the hands of Top Docs is that some Top Docs believe sales patter themselves. When I worked at St George’s Hospital Medical School, a female gynaecologist absolutely assured me that if one shaves one’s legs the hairs come back bigger and blacker than ever. This is a myth which has been propagated by Cosmo magazine, it is not true. Shaving ones legs cuts the top of the hairs off – the characteristics of the hair are determined by the root follicle. Unless the root follicle is disrupted that hair is not going to change in colour or thickness or its rate of growth. Legs which have been shaved feel stubbly because when the hairs grow back one is feeling the hairs which have been cut with the razor, so the tips of the hair feels sharp. The hair has not come back bigger, blacker or thicker. I would encourage anyone who doesn’t believe me to use a microscope and see for themselves. I pointed this out to the Top Doc and she commented that yes that must be right, she’d never thought of it before.

As Brown observed, this Top Doc will have learnt all about root follicles years ago but she was not translating what she had learnt into practice, which is worrying. She was appointed as a consultant shortly after I had the conversation re leg hairs with her. She was also one of the better Top Docs at St George’s. She was keen on the idea of diets and hairless legs but she wasn’t a crazed nutter who hated her patients and fabricated her data.

No wonder Tessa believed the pulsating skull cap possessed miraculous properties.

Hours after Tessa’s death, the Gov’t announced that it would be giving £65 million to the Tessa Jowell Brain Cancer Research Mission. Someone in the Labour Party suggested yesterday that in tribute to Tessa, Sure Start should be resurrected. There really is nothing like investing millions on things that one knows will be completely ineffective because an Inspirational Woman has died. If Sure Start does rise again, at least there will be a continuous supply of vulnerable young woman to train as social workers who can be silently blackmailed because their senior colleagues have knowledge of their personal problems. It’s just what Tessa would have wanted.

 

Tessa’s husband David Mills is an international corporate lawyer who has acted for Silvio Berlusconi, the former Italian PM with Mafia connections. Berlusconi’s wife accused him of child abuse on account of his sexual activities with a ‘dancer’ known as Ruby The Heart Stealer, who transpired to be rather younger than everyone was led to believe when Silvio first dallied with her at the Bunga Bunga parties. Mills was investigated in Italy for money laundering and alleged tax fraud. 

Tessa was investigated by the Cabinet Secretary Gus O’Donnell over the allegations surrounding her husband, because of a possible conflict of interest between her personal life and ministerial duties. O’Donnell stated that, ‘it is the Prime Minister, not me, who, constitutionally, is the right and proper person to take a view on matters arising based on the Ministerial Code’ in his letter. Blair decided that Tessa was ‘not in breach’ of the Ministers’ code of conduct. On 4 March 2006, it was announced that Tessa and Mills had separated, after the allegations had begun to damage her political standing. Tessa said ‘although we are separated I have never doubted his innocence’.

Scepticism that Tessa was unaware of the details of her husband’s dealings with Berlusconi led to a ‘Private Eye’ front cover of her with a speech bubble saying: ‘I have never met my husband’. It was shortly after that was published that Tessa announced her marriage break-up.

On 17 Feb 2009, an Italian court sentenced Mills to four years and six months in jail after finding him guilty of accepting a bribe from Berlusconi to give false evidence on his behalf during corruption trials which had taken place in 1997 and 1998. The judgement was appealed by Mills. On 27 Oct 2009, the Italian Appeal Court upheld his conviction and prison sentence. Mills confirmed that he would initiate a second and final appeal to the Cassation Court. On 25 Feb 2010, the Italian Cassation Court (the second and last court of appeal under Italian law) dissolved the case because of the statute of limitations. For this type of crime, in Italian law, a case expires after 10 years. Mills argued that he received the bribe in 1999, and not 2000 as Prosecutors had previously argued, thus taking advantage of the statute of limitations.

Tessa’s rift with David Mills after he landed in the slurry pit was soon healed. Within weeks of announcing that they were parting, they were seen holding hands at a venue where they did not expect the media to be present. They then repaired whatever had gone wrong in their relationship – presumably ‘David being prosecuted for bribery in connection with a man with Mafia connections’ – and were soon back together. Tessa was delighted, as she subsequently explained in an interview on ‘Woman’s Hour’.

I am just left wondering why a woman who spent so much of her career ignoring, concealing or colluding with serious organised crime ever so much as raised an eyebrow when it was revealed that her husband accepted a bribe from someone whose business interests were linked to the Mafia.

In 2004 Cherie and Blair holidayed with Silvio Berlusconi at his residence in Sardinia. Whether Blair and Cherie took part in a Bunga Bunga party was not revealed. Silvio doesn’t even pretend to be a Pretty Straight Kind Of Guy, he’s a lecherous old crook who has sex with underaged girls at orgies and doesn’t give a damn who knows it.

 

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After Tessa croaked, there was a mass outpouring of emotion accompanied by the unpeeling of onions.

Tony Blair said that Tessa left an ‘enormous’ legacy as ‘everything she touched turned to gold in some way’. Of course it did, she was a mate of Silvio with Mafia connections.

 

Simon Stevens, the Chief Executive of NHS England, said that Tessa was a ‘remarkable woman’ – Dafydd once said that about me after his threats hadn’t worked and when he was trying to bribe me into dropping my complaint about him –  who had sounded a ‘national call to arms’ about the need to spend more on researching the causes of brain cancer. ‘She leaves a deep legacy with the potential to benefit many thousands of other cancer patients long into the future,’ Stevens said. Not in the face of this much fuckwittery and research fraud she doesn’t.

Tributes to the Inspirational Sex Trafficker poured out of all the orifices of the usual suspects, including Alistair Campbell, who is a MIND Ambassador and Diane Abbott, who worked as the PR and Press Officer for Lambeth Borough Council when those kids were being abused and trafficked.

Sarah Lindsell, CEO of The Brain Tumour Charity, said that the charity had started working with the ‘wonderful ambassador’ Tessa towards the end of last year and praised Tessa’s campaigning for cancer patients.
 David Jenkinson is the Chief Scientific Officer for The Brain Tumour Charity. He began his career with CR-UK, an organisation which was involved in a research fraud that, after it was exposed, resulted in the suicide of one of the researchers. One member of the team was a former colleague of Tony Francis’s.

Sir Martin Narey is Chair of the Trustees of The Brain Tumour Charity. Narey has worked for the NHS, was Director General of the Prison Service, Chief Exec of National Offender Management Service and Director of Barnardo’s. A record of outstanding service for a paedophiles’ friend.

Other Trustees are an assortment of paedophiles friends, ex NHS staff, a former member of staff at Great Ormond Street Hospital, Michael Heseltine’s former Assistant Private Secretary, a former investment banker who is now involved with the private health industry and an ex Goldman Sachs big wig who is going ski-ing in the Swiss Alps to Raise Money For Charity.

As a privileged, indulged, unprincipled, money grubbing, vacuous gangster’s friend who did so much damage to so many people, Tessa was clearly just the right choice as ambassador for The Brain Tumour Charity.

 

Here’s a photo of Tessa looking as rough as one of the poor sods who’s lives she ruined whilst she was a psychiatric social worker – although Tessa is wearing more expensive clothes and is in possession of more expensive teeth than your average service user:

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Anyone up for being unlawfully arrested and imprisoned in a dungeon in an asylum in the middle of a range of hills in north Wales because a deranged old bugger who trained at the Maudsley wants to have sex with them and then traffick them into sex work? Bring those bodies up from the grounds of the North Wales Hospital and then we’ll see exactly what Tessa’s contribution to the world was.

Author: Sally Baker

I am a writer and a sociologist, originally from Somerset, but I’ve been based in Wales for most of my life. I had my first encounter with a mental health professional in 1984 at the age of 21. My GP described this man to my then partner – who also became a sociologist – as someone who had experienced ‘considerable success’. My meeting with this psychiatrist was a disaster and we attempted to complain about his insensitivity and highly inappropriate behaviour. That was the first time we were threatened and pressurised to withdraw a complaint against a mental health professional. This man is long dead – he was a retired psychiatrist from the North Wales Hospital Denbigh, T. Gwynne Williams, who was working shifts in the student health centre at University College of North Wales (now Bangor University). We discovered years later that this ‘successful man’ was notorious – he had been an enthusiastic lobotomist…

4 thoughts on “Baroness Tessa Jowell – A Tribute”

  1. Searing and honest.

    To witness someone die from or experience an illness, one’s first instinct or inclination may be to fundamentally re-assess the personality and deeds of the dying or deceased in a more favourable direction; to be more “generous” in one’s final analysis of a deceased person’s life’s work in “in light of how they suffered at the end of their life”.

    To see another person suffering is to be reminded of our own human frailty as much as theirs; one feels sympathy and empathy. Realising that the same fate – decline and death – awaits everyone, we feel a heightened sense of commonality even with a person whose lifetime’s misdeeds we’d previously denounced. There is an emotional impact to contemplating anyone suffer and our instinct is to lessen the that pain in any way possible – to restore the dignity of the sufferer if we can – including by casting the sufferer as peculiarly “brave” and “noble”.

    But this is dangerous. Society must not allow the lifetime’s (mis)deeds of a public figure to be airbrushed and reassessed with rose-tinted spectacles when that figure is in declining health or recently deceased.

    If we kid ourselves into believing that every dying or recently deceased person lived a life of essentially well-meant choices and decisions, we make it that much harder for ourselves – society – to learn the lessons of the failures and misdeeds of the object of our sympathy.

    It’s right that the public should consider at this time all the many ways in which Tessa Jowell seriously failed the weak and vulnerable. It’s right that we should think carefully at this juncture about the ways in which Jowell and her fellow New Labour ministers ruined the lives of many vulnerable people, wittingly or not; and dashed the hopes of millions more.

    So thank you, Sally, for resisting doing ‘the easy thing’ – and making yourself vulnerable to criticism. Some will say “one shouldn’t speak ill of the dead”. The truth is, however, we should all shrink from the ludicrous hagiographies of dead public figures who failed catastrophically in their duties of public service and care. Honesty can be a sharp knife; so can “true” history. The cut must come before the healing.

    1. Thanks for your comment.

      As I was writing it I knew that it could be used to bolster the picture of me as an all round cow, but not only were the lies about Tessa after her death such whoppers, but what she did throughout her life from the very beginning of her career damaged so many people that I could not let the drivel go unchallenged. How the former kids in care or those patients who had been harmed by the Maudsley felt when they saw the smug cow rise to become a member of the Gov’t whilst Blair banged on about her kind-hearted womanly Compassion For The Poor and For Wimmin I cannot imagine.

      I would not level criticism under certain circumstances – for example, by judging what people have done in circumstances such as a war. In wars people are terrified, everything goes haywire and some people do terrible things to survive. If someone is in fear for their life or has been brutalised, again I can understand why someone might behave less than well. But Tessa Jowell was, like her mate Harriet, the not very bright daughter of the upper middle classes – privileged, ruthless and with a huge sense of entitlement. They were told again and again that what they were doing was harming people. They did not give a stuff because they wanted to be Cabinet Ministers and believed that this was an expression of their feminism. They have been a truly toxic influence and are dreadful examples of women in politics.

      Tessa Jowell was friends with a business associate of the Mafia and her husband took a bribe from him. Did no-one notice?

  2. If only the rest of the scum exposed on your blog would depart and leave none to inherit their sleazy networks we might all think we had gone to heaven.

    1. The originals of Dafydd’s generation are pegging out daily, but their proteges will be with us for a long time yet and their influence will last for decades. Most of them have led long lives in comfort on good salaries and are now in receipt of generous pensions. Most of their victims died long ago after living in severe poverty.

      The likes of Dafydd and Lucille have no conscience, but someone remarked to me a few years ago that what had gone on was so bad that a lot of those involved will remain in denial for the rest of their lives because they would not be able to live with themselves if they ever admitted what they had been a part of.

      As I discover more and more, I just think ‘no wonder Tony Francis killed himself’. He probably knew that he was looking at a very long prison sentence and public disgrace.

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