My blog tops 300,000 hits in 2022 – a year of frustration for pension campaigners and whistleblowers

Happy New Year. Last year My WordPress blog reached 304,297 hits with 218,257 unique visitors – compared to 286,840 hits and 203,099 visitors the previous year.

This figures does not include hits on my Facebook and Linked In sites which means the numbers are actually much higher though more difficult to exactly measure. Nor does this include my articles on Whitehall and Westminster for Byline Times. Byline Times is worth subscribing to for all the other independent journos who contribute to it.

Thanks to everybody who chose to read my stories and special thanks to those who kindly donated to my site. Last year I raised some £5600 via WordPress plus another £1600 through Paypal before charges.

The two campaigns I run on this site – the demand for full restitution for the 3.6 million women who lost out when the pensions age was raised from 60 to 66 – and valiant whistleblowers fighting for justice in the NHS and at the nuclear facility in Sellafield – attracted the most interest.

The Department for Work and Pensions emerged as the most hated ministry by pensioners and benefit claimants.

DWP most hated ministry

The biggest hit on the site was not from my campaign for the #50swomen but from the blog exposing the millions of people who have been swindled by the DWP out of a Guaranteed Minimum Pension. Here I was helped out by a retired expert on the issue Christopher Thompson who has tirelessly pressed ministers and the Commons DWP committee to do something about it. This attracted 15,281 hits.

Four blogs on the 50swomen campaign attracted over 10,000 hits – the highest being my report of the WASPI meeting at the Labour Party Conference which attracted 12,405. My report on the proposed remedies for the women by the Parliamentary Ombudsman which I and many women see as a betrayal attracted 10,054 hits. An opportunity to download the summary of the changes attracted 4,400 people to do so – adding a little to more transparency given only a selected few were supposed to see it.

Dr Day case was followed across the world

On the the whistleblower front I decided to do a daily report on the Dr Chris Day case – the appalling story of a junior doctor who lost his training place because he tried to expose patient safety dangers at an intensive care unit at Woolwich Hospital where two patients had already died. This was really old fashioned journalism when people used to cover courts regularly – in this case an employment tribunal – making the proceedings publicly accountable. It paid off not only with a big following of the blog here but thousands of people followed it on Linked In including doctors from Denmark, Australia, New Zealand, the US, Canada and Brazil. He lost the tribunal despite the health trust destroying 50,000 emails relating to its case that should have been examined by the tribunal. But the good news is that the British Medical Association is backing his appeal.

There is similar interest -including internationally – in the tribunal case of Alison McDermott who was commissioned by Sellafield to review its human resources policies and found appalling shortcomings and also in India and the UK in the fight by Dr Usha Prasad, the former cardiologist at the Epsom and St Helier University Trust, who was sacked after refusing to change a report on an ” avoidable death” there that should have been reported to the coroner. My thanks to two retired cardiologists, Dr David Ward and Jane Somerville for their help on these cases.

Whistleblower cases call into question the employment tribunal system

These cases have thrown up serious questions about the competence and bias of employment judges and called in question the entire running of the employment tribunal system and its failure to keep records of cases. I am now beginning to be inundated with dissatisfied people who feel they have been cheated by going to an employment tribunal.

This year has been a frustrating year for whistleblowers and for women seeking a just solution to maladministration and direct discrimination over the raising of the pension age. But there is no reason to stop reporting this – though I will be taking a long break at the beginning of this year only to come back reinvigorated.

One final point. A very small minority of people are trying to put up comments on this blog using false names from fake email addresses. I see some national newspapers are no longer going to put up comments on the web from people who don’t declare who they are. So from this year I will no longer carry comments from people who do this.

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My Blog in 2012

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

This blog was viewed about 82,000 times in 2012. This modest jump takes the total number of hits to over 167,000 since it was launched three years ago – meaning the number of hits increased by nearly a quarter in a year. As revealed in the full report from WordPress the most heavily read blog was the one disclosing that NHS Direct was facing near oblivion after losing out to GP’s co-operatives and private profit making companies. This has attracted 5400 views – 3560 on one day – just 44 short of  an all time time record for this site.

The second biggest hit was the official inspector’s report disclosing strip searching of women at Gatwick Airport and the humiliation of gay people by border and customs staffs. this attracted 3839 hits and is still regularly getting traffic.

Two of the other big hits are about scandals in the privatisation of the London fire services  and the Whitehall tax scam which  earned me Political Journalist of the Year this year.

Cabinet Office minister Francis Maude turned out to be the sixth most popular read in 2012 at 2,549 on the tale of how he was always late paying his utility bills and  service charges on his Kennington flat – even though the taxpayer was picking up the tab.

Finally thanks to Twitter, Guido Fawkes,Facebook, the London FBU and Liberal Conspiracy as top referrers to this site. and also to the indefatigable Mrs Angry from Barnet for making the most comments, always noisy and always right!

Click here to see the complete report.