I’m delighted to see that town councillors Count and Shermer were prepared to put their heads above the parapet at the recent March Town Council meeting (Archway Debate held in Secret). However I was disappointed to read that debate in public on the Diamond Jubilee fiasco seems to have been quickly stifled.
The Council are however, to be congratulated for finally realising they need to have more public consultation about what the public want. I hope many of the community will respond with their suggestions as to what is appropriate to mark the momentous occasion of the Queen’s 60 years on the throne.
Restoring the Fountain is also not an option for the time being and we should respect the family’s wishes on that subject.
Cllr French’s dismissive remark about sifting through 1,000s of designs indicates how out of touch politician’s can become over public participation. The reality is that there will probably be a short list of maybe half a dozen good ideas which will recur and get a number of nominations and these should be put to the community, via the local papers for them to vote.
There is plenty of time for this process rather than trying to force their choice through on a take it or leave it basis.
I was also pleased to see that the official statement says that no rise in the precept was envisaged but that doesn’t exclude the possibility of council tax money being used to fund the project otherwise how can they set a budget of £30k?
The money used for this project should be raised by public subscription and that process has already started by Cllr Skoulding generously donating his £5k councillor’s allowance as noted in the Council minutes at the time.