MP Richard Bacon

MP calls on Norfolk health trust to cut out “gobbledegook” after winning ‘Golden Bull’ award

Wednesday, December 12, 2012
12.21 PM

A health trust has won an award for “worst written nonsense” after being nominated by a Norfolk MP.

South Norfolk MP Richard Bacon put NHS Norfolk and Waveney forward for the Plain English Campaign’s 2012 “Golden Bull” awards after receiving a letter from the Primary Care Trust.

Mr Bacon called on the organisation to cut out the “gobbledegook” after the letter said that the trust was obliged “to apply a negative financial uplift…in the sum of -1.8pc.”

The Conservative MP said: “When an MP is talking gibberish in the Commons, other members can gently intervene to point this out. The Golden Bull Awards have allowed me to do the same for NHS Norfolk and Waveney, after the stream of gobbledegook in their letter left me baffled.”

“I am sure that the team at NHS Norfolk and Waveney will take this award in good heart but there is a serious side to this. MPs write to a wide range of public sector bodies on behalf of our constituents. We want to be able to share the replies we receive, explain what they mean and give advice about what to do next. That is extremely difficult to do if we can’t understand the letter ourselves.” A spokesman for NHS Norfolk and Waveney said the letter was describing technical and complex issues. However, the trust should have chosen words that were easier to digest.