Value for money?

SIR - In her exuberance to bite back at me, Councillor Wright has completely misinterpreted the main point of my letter, in which I was asking why Ottery Town Council is asking for an increase in my council tax; what, I asked, am I getting for my money?? Councillor roger Giles waded in without addressing my query as well.

I was citing the closure of the loos in Ottery and the two recent planning issues as examples of what I presume I am getting and, if that is the case, then I consider it poor value for money.

I could just have easily made reference to a meeting of the Ottery Town Council in the West Hill Village Hall; held there as the main topic on the Agenda was another local planning issue, namely the proposed development at Eastfield.

On this occasion, the same councillors, who are taking issue with me, had the most to say by far, with equal rhetoric, which left the Chairman of the Planning Committee so confused and bewildered that he was lost for words, tongue-tied and had to be rescued by the Lord Mayor. It’s all about value for money and are we getting i1.

As to the side issues referred to by councillor Wright, it circulating letters regarding a planning application before that application has been registered with the LA is not inviting and urging objection, I don’t know what is – she doesn’t do for every planning application in the Ward, even after registration.

As for our respective viewpoints on the LA proposals for future East Devon development, against which I wrote what she describes as an aggressive letter, she is quite right; I am vehemently opposed to it. What she failed to mention, however, was the fact that she, personally, invited me to join her and Roger Giles, as part of their placard carrying flock, in the pointless exercise of marching to the council Offices.

We are not a bunch of socialist, public sector workers marching on Westminster to protest about proposed government cuts, neither are we left wing university students opposed to increases in tuition fees; we are, or are supposed to be, responsible citizens living in a democracy.

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I want, and am perfectly entitled to expect, freedom to exercise my rights of free speech and reasoned arguments. I have no time for any behaviour which equates with ‘rabble rousing’ and I most certainly have no desire to be represented in such a manner by my elected representative.

From time immemorial, the pen has proved mightier than the sword and there I rest my case, although I am still not at all sure what I get for my money from Ottery Town Council!!

Ralph E Gray

Perrimead, Hawkins Lane,

West Hill, Ottery St Mary