Information Commissioner v EDDC: decision two days after rushed Knowle meetings!

Ah, now we understand! Clever Mr Cohen!

… After months of wrangling it appears that the issue will come to a head next month, with a judgement set to be handed down on Friday 27 March.

BUT conveniently, EDDC has set its extraordinary meeting on the office relocation for Wednesday 25 March – just TWO DAYS before the judgement is set to be published.

So, members of the public are set to be kept in the dark about these reports until after the decision has been made – which one might think, was the aim of these EDDC induced delays all the way along. They have managed to limp it along until two days after the decision is made.

That smell … it’s getting stronger and stronger …

Now William Hill wants piece of the Wright/Swire action!

William Hill has opened a book on the East Devon parliamentary battle between Claire Wright (ever-present Ind)ependent) and Hugo Swire rarely-seen Conservative). Claire Wright opens at 7/1, with Ukip well behind on 16/1, Lib Dems 33/1, Labour 100/1. Hugo is 1/9.

Currently Ladbrokes has Claire Wright at 6/1.

So, still perceived as a two horse race!

Note: bet responsibly and over 18 years of age.

Improvements to be considered at Rotherham Council: change to committee system?

… “It has also been suggested that the governance of the authority could be improved – made more transparent and accountable – if it were changed to the committee system. Before taking any steps to implement such a change, I will be inviting the commissioners views as to what they see would be the most effective and efficient form of governance for the authority. I am also open to representations from the public.”

Parliamentary Communities and Local Government Select Committee slams unsustainable development

“FRIDAY 27 FEBRUARY – for immediate release

Clive Betts: Government must do more to protect communities against unsustainable development

Clive Betts MP, Chair of the Communities and Local Government Committee, has today criticised the complacency of the Government’s response to the Committee’s report, Operation of the National Planning Policy Framework:

“I am very disappointed by the Government’s response to my Committee’s recent report on the Operation of the National Planning Policy Framework.

“My Committee produced a report on the draft NPPF in 2011, which the then Minister, Greg Clark, accepted almost in full. This is in stark contrast to the Government’s latest response which rejects the vast majority of our
recommendations. Current Ministers have missed an opportunity to provide greater protection against unsustainable development in England and to ensure communities aren’t subject to unwanted housing development.

“Our report was firmly evidence-based and the culmination of a long, meticulous inquiry in which we heard from a wide range of witnesses, from parish councils to house builders, from wildlife groups to the property sector.

“We actually welcomed the NPPF as a step forward, but recommended some adjustments to ensure it addressed the growing number of concerns about unsustainable development. Sadly, the Government’s response shows it is burying its head in the sand about these important public concerns.

“Our report didn’t call for an overhaul of the NPPF but rather a series of changes aimed at ensuring it does the job it is intended to do. By refusing to countenance these changes, the Government risks damaging the good work that went into producing the NPPF and undermining the confidence of communities across the country in both the planning system and local decision making.”


Committee Membership is as follows: Mr Clive Betts (Chair, Lab), Bob Blackman (Con), Simon Danczuk (Lab), Mrs Mary Glindon (Lab), David Heyes (Lab), Mark Pawsey (Con), John Pugh, (Lib Dem), Alec Shelbrooke (Con), John Stevenson (Con) and Heather Wheeler (Con) and Chris Williamson (Lab).”

Oh dear, Mrs Kerridge – as EDDC “Tourism Champion” you haven’t done your homework!

In today’s Sidmouth Herald (see post below) Sheia Kerridge, who has been as silent about tourism as Hugo Swire has been about the Local Plan, promises that, now she has retired after 42 years, she can devote more time to her work as a councillor, particularly “a waterborne transport link along the Jurassic Coast”.

But see here – its already been discounted as too expensive and unfundable by your own town council’s tourism chief, Simon Pollentine as late as December 2014!

“Save the NHS” march in Sidmouth

“The protest in Market Place, which is being co-ordinated by the 38 Degrees group, will be one of hundreds of other similar events across the country.

Campaigners will be out from 11am and will be asking residents to sign a petition urging all candidates in May’s General Election to protect the NHS.”

Independents day, not just for Sid Valley. Watch this movement spread!!

Full text of the Sidmouth Herald report is here: and here:

And/ or/ click on the pics below to zoom in:





Independent, united challenge needed across the district

And it has already started! Sidmouth Herald front page story to follow!

…”The Constituency’s MP Hugo Swire appears to pay very little attention to local matters, preferring instead to concentrate on his Ministerial activities. It is rare to hear about Hugo intervening or commenting on local matters, something that a good proactive local MP ought to do. Is Hugo distracted by all of his Ministerial trips abroad?

Our District Council, as everyone knows, has an overwhelming Conservative majority. As everyone will also know the District Council has, particularly over the past 4 years or so, been beset with an apparent indifference by the Conservative majority group to the concerns and wishes of the electorate; those they were elected to serve. More and more the word “arrogance” is used when electors describe the Conservative Councillors attitude to them.”