Having an agenda of their own

Share this article


Having agenda

of their own

I reply to part of the letter published July 5 from Michael Clewett, a councillor for Polegate Residents Association, as I am one of the two residents to which he refers.

I do not wonder why certain councillors are re-elected. I would suggest it is because the title contains the word ‘residents’, which probably has an appeal rather than the individual.

The title also suggests that the councillors reside in Polegate which as you know is not so in every case.

The PRA state they have no party political affiliation. This clearly refers to mainstream politics. An association is a group of people joined together for a purpose, in this case local politics.

While the non-PRA councillors do not have the word ‘Residents’ in their title, some have demonstrated they are in touch with the inhabitants of Polegate.

I replied to the recent letter by Cllr Jill Voyce also of the PRA, in which she sought acclaim for achievements by the PRA rather than Polegate Town Council.

May I remind readers that it was only PRA councillors who voted to consider selling part of the War Memorial Recreation Ground despite huge public opposition. It was also just PRA councillors who voted to oppose protecting that same land through village green status.

Is that listening to and representing the inhabitants?

At least one but I understand two PRA councillors criticised me for calling a by-election following the death of two councillors last year, by referring to a by-election as being a waste of public money, the preference being to co-opt. I quote from the Good Councillors Guide:-’Elections are a vision of democracy at its best; local votes for local people for local action.’

The public voted, but neither of the winners were PRA, perhaps the faith is not as strong as you suggest.

To clarify Cllr Clewett’s statement, ‘both gentlemen have been told on many occasions … why not stand for election’. My question is, when and by whom?

I have never been told, two councillors asked if I had considered standing and the answer is yes, but personal and family circumstances totally prevent this.

Finally, airing one’s views in the newspaper probably reaches and informs far more people than Polegate Town Council does. Is that a problem?

My problem with PTC and in particular the PRA started way before Mr Clewett became a councillor and was a result of un-minuted ‘secret meetings’ in 2008.

Paul Woolmer