More Evidence That Plymouth Ideal Org is coming in Late 2020

In 2010, Scientology bought a building in Plymouth for conversion into an ‘Ideal Org’. It was basically left to rot until April 2019 when the Church of Scientology International applied to Plymouth City council for permission to renovate it. Plans were submitted and permission (termed “Planning Permission”) was subsequently granted.

The plans noted the presence of asbstos-containing materials in the fabric of the building, which had to be removed before any other work could be done. This work started in August 2019, and was completed  in October 2019.

Why has Scientology set to just now, after having let the building rot for almost a decade?

My theory is that they are planning to open this new facility around September 2020, because the Mayflower departed from Plymouth for the new world on September the 6th, 400 years ago. This anniversary is being marked in Plymouth and throughout the UK. It represents  is a perfect opportunity for Scientology’s belagured leader, David Miscavige, to make a ‘religious freedom’ speech, and distract attention from the legal actions that have been brought against him.

I gave my reasons for this prediction in my last post. Since then some additional evidence has appeared. It’s not conclusive, of course. This being Scientology, they may just be trying to spin out the fund-raising a little longer. However, I think there’s now an excellent chance they they going for September / October 2020. Continue reading

Scientology Fund-Raising in Plymouth is Being Stepped Up – Is There a *Lot* More to Come?

The active Scientology Org in Plymouth as of 2019

Recently, I published a letter from the consulting engineers who are organising the renovation of the building earmarked Plymouth’s Ideal Org . This stated that roads around the building would be closed on Monday the 26th August 2019, and may remain closed until September 2020.

The building was bought in late 2010 and one planning application has already been allowed to lapse. It seemed it was going to be allowed to rot away. However, this letter strongly suggests that work is finally about to begin.

That particular Monday is a public holiday, and the contractors will have to be paid extra if they close the roads then. However, starting work on a public holiday is exactly the kind of the thing Scientology tends to do on these occasions. Fewer people will notice that the closure is underway because they will be out for the day. When they arrive back home, it will be a fait accompli.

We will find out in a few days time. Watch this space 🙂

For this post, however, I’m interested in the modest shop that presently serves as Plymouth’s org. It’s the one on the right, in the image above. There’s now evidence that local Scientologists are coming under greater-than-ever greater pressure to donate money to this project.

Also, I present a theory as to why only Plymouth – out of all UK orgs – appears to be undergoing renovation. Continue reading

Evidence that the Renovation of Plymouth (UK) Ideal Org Will Be Underway Again in 8 Days Time

I have obtained evidence that major building work is soon going to begin on the former Royal Fleet Club building in Plymouth, in order to convert it into an Ideal Org.

This includes a local council approved road closure, which will have a significant impact on the local community. This closure will begin on the 26th of August 2019 and has approval to continue up until September 2020, if required.

in my last post, I repoted that that preliminary work involving asbestos removal seemed to have stalled. It’s now evident that work had actually been completed, at least to the extent that major building works could begin.

The renovation of the building will soon begin, and is going to be pursued with determination.

The dates above are consistant with:

  1. Completion, and a ‘Grand Opening’ in time for the IAS event in October 2020. This is when the leader of Scientology, David Miscavige, is usually in the UK to preside over the annual IAS event at Saint Hill Manor
  2. A ‘Grand Opening’ that occurs during nationwide celebrations of the anniversary of the departure of the ‘Mayfower’ from Plymouth to the New World – a perfect opportunity for ‘religious freedom’ propaganda and a speech on that theme.

Miscavige is currently coming under considerable legal pressure in the US. For the first time there is a credible threat that he will be called to appear in court to answer accusations laid in a civil case.  Before that happens he must be served with court documents requiring him to appear.

There is a persuasive theory that the Ideal Org programme in the US has been suspended so that court officers will not be able to predict Miscavige’s movements, and he can avoid service. There will be no new openings – but Scientologists have been promised that all of the existing orgs will have their new buildings renovated and opened “simultaneously”, at some point in the future.  Fund raising will, of course, continue unabated.

I have taken legal advice and learned that US courts can retain a British solicitor to serve their documents on a visitor to the UK, so Miscavige has the same problem here*.

However, the Renovation of Plymouth Ideal Org is definitely underway. I have a speculative theory as to why. First, lets look at the evidence.

*Revised – I intially thought a US citizen would be immune from service here, but that is apparently not the case.

Continue reading

The Renovation of Plymouth Ideal Org Seems to Have Stalled Already

In late 2010, the Church of Scientology bought a substantial building that had been specified by the Royal Navy as temporary quarters for visiting Royal Navy personnel and Royal Marines. It consisted of 50+ bedrooms, two ballrooms, kitchens, bars, storage rooms and apartments for two live-in managers and their families. There is a video tour of the exterior here. It was to become the new home of the Church of Scientology in Plymouth.

This was puzzling. The 201l census revealed that there were only 28 Scientologists in the whole of the Southwest of England – the largest catchment area of any UK org.  I have independently confirmed that figure in a number of ways. There are certainly fewer than 30 active Scientologists attending the existing org, which struggles to pay the rent on a shop near the city centre.

On the 20th of May 2019, Plymouth Org was granted planning permission by the City Council to renovate the new building and open it as an ‘Ideal Org’. Local Scientologists celebrated with a “Milestone Event” held at a local hotel. Then a specialised company moved in to remove asbestos-containing materials from the structure. These materials include cement wall and ceiling board, internal plaster/wall texturing roofing materials and insulation on hot water systems.

One day, the company signs (including statutory signs warning that the area was an active building site) disappeared, as did some of the heavy equipment being used for asbestos removal. The rest was secured in such a way that it could not be used.

Since then, I have gathered evidence (including three eye-witness accounts) which strongly suggests that the renovation project has at least stalled, and might have been suspended for an indefinite period. Work has certainly (abruptly) stopped.

Details after the break.

Continue reading

A Scientology Publication Reveals that Plymouth is Next in the Ideal Org Queue – Or Does it?

After the break, there is a short extract taken from Issue 31 of Scientology’s “Affinity” magazine ( published mid 2019).  This page-and-a-half extract represents itself as “The Magazine Of The Church of Scientology of Plymouth” – it’s a magazine within a magazine.

I think this is disingenuous. I think that “Affinity”comes in many custom versions, each personalised with a the identity of a different org.

I posses a number of other issues which include Plymouth Orgs contact details and present as the magazine of Plymouth Org. However, none of the others have any news specifically concerning the Church of Scientology of Plymouth, so the  claim that this is their periodical is simply false.

However, the extract below does concern  Plymouth, and discussed the priority given to the renovation of Plymouth Ideal Org.

If you have been following this blog recently, you will know that the substantial hotel which Scientologists in Plymouth bought back in 2010 to become their Ideal Org has finally had some renovation done.

Work has commenced on the removal of Abestos-containing building materials. This must be completed before any other building work takes place for obvious safety reasons. It’s been undertaken by a reputable specialised company and may already be complete –  so what happens next?

The extract after the break might give a clue – or be deliberately misleading. Both possibilities – and the reasons for the confusion – are intersting Continue reading

A Progress Report on Plymouth Ideal Org – And *Another* Puzzle

I’ve just been to take another look at the building which Scientology has been claiming for almost a decade will soon be renovated to become Plymouth’s ideal org (image left).

The last time I looked, asbestos removal was under way there. I could tell, because the gates were covered with statutory signs put up by the contractor, Gilpin Environmental, who specialise in that work. They had also parked a mobile asbestos removal facility there.

The signs that were on the gates are gone now. The upper left image shows what the place looks like today, and the one below, on the right, how it was during my last visit. However, a mobile decontamination unit is still parked in this secure area.

As we will see below, this unit appears to be a different one, with fewer of the stickers  which identify it as an asbsestos removal facility visible.

I don’t understand what is going on here. However, we do know that Scientology does not like people watching their activities, or reporting on what they are doing. In fact, if you have seen reports from Ideal Org openings (e.g. Firhouse, in the Republic of Ireland and Birmingham in England) you will know that they take great pains to exclude the public, even to the point of putting up expensive sight barriers.

This is because they prefer their entry into a community to be a fait accompli – ideally nobody knows what is happening until after the opening ceremony has taken place.

on te other hand, I doubt a reputable company like Gilpin Environmental would remove the site signs before they had finished doing their job. They are, after all, required by law. I also doubt Scientology could prevail upon them to do this, so that the work attracts less attention.

Is the job complete, then? – in which case, why is the equipment still there? I think it the job probably is over, and the equipment will be moved out soon, but I will check back.

*As always, if you click on any of these high resolution images, they will open in a new tab and you can zoom in. You are also welcome to download and inspect them closely, providing you tell me if you spot anything interesting in the comments 🙂 Continue reading

Scientology Obtains Planning Permission in Gateshead – and Confirmation of Asbestos Removal in Plymouth

The local Newspaper serving Gateshead,  “The Chronicle”, reported today  that Scientology has obtained planning permission for an Ideal Org there. This is no surprise and was, in fact, predicted by the BBC

The Church of Scientolgy can now start work on renovating the local building they bought more than a decade ago (the former Windmill Hills nursing home, on the edge of Gateshead Town Centre).

In January 2017, they stated an intention to renovate in “two to three years” after the place had been left to rot since they bought it 10 years previously.

The Ideal Org builing in Plymouth was also granted planning permission recently. You can view the plans here and take a high-resolution video tour of the place here.

What’s more, work has commenced with the removal of asbesto-containing material in Plymouth. This is important because those materials have likely degraded due to serious leaks in the roofing, and also  been disturbed by Scientologists. They have, for example, stripped out floorboards and fittings to sell – while people have been living there.

See after the break, for a discussion of Ideal Org prospects in the UK, and confirmation that a specialised asbestos removal crew is on the scene in Plymouth. Continue reading