Here we have a further episode in the saga of RBWM's Local Development Plan, a saga that includes that RBWM and Bray Parish Councillor Cllr Walters, highlighted the information given by RBWM to a resident in a response to a freedom of information request, and was then sacked from a position in a housing review panel by the Council Leader Simon Dudley. Now we see that Cllr Dudley is to be the Director of the Homes and Community Agency, soon to be renamed "Homes England"
Cllr Walters lived up to the Conservative party manifesto on which he and Cllr Dudley were elected. Sadly Cllr Dudley has acted against the manifesto.
Cllr Dudley and three other RBWM Councillors, one of whom is Cllr Walters are also Bray Parish Councillors. Until very recently there was a fifth RBWM Councillor who was a Bray Parish Councillor, but he has recently resigned from the Parish Council. See following;
So one third of Bray Parish Councillors were also RBWM Councillors. The Bray Parish Council has a Neighbourhood Development Plan (NDP), currently submitted to RBWM for their consideration as part of the NDP development process. In that NDP, Bray Parish Council state their concern for protection of Green Belt land, especially an area of Green Belt land between Fifield and Windsor. The RBWM Councillors who are also Bray Parish Councillors had supported the Bray Parish NDP, yet we find that when acting as RBWM Councillors they take the opposite view that the Green Belt must be built on.
Of all RBWM Green Belt land, that which surrounds Holyport and Fifield, and that lying between Holyport and Maidenhead, this being Bray Parish land, is suffering the most from RBWM's attack on Green belt Land.
In Bray Parish Council Meetings at present, when the Green Belt is to be discussed, the Bray Parish Councillors who are also Borough Councillors have to leave the room. This is ridiculous - these RBWM Councillors are in the Bray Parish Council meeting as Bray Parish Councillors - so should take part and should act in the interests of Bray Parish Residents, not in the interests of the careers of Leader of RBWM Council Simon Dudley and his appointee, Derek Wilson, the Lead member for Planning - who is responsible for the RBWM Local Development Plan.
I would think that those Bray Parish Councillors who are also RBWM Councillors could demand not to be excluded. In fact it could be argued that they are failing in their duty to Bray Parish Residents by not taking part, so as to support Green Belt as they should know that their parishioners want.
This leads me to say again that the rules of Parish Councils should exclude from membership all associated Borough Councillors.
Enough is enough, I say - I call upon all Bray Parish Councillors who are also RBWM Councillors - except Cllr Walters - to immediately resign from Bray Parish Council; the grounds for resignation should be that the interests of RBWM, especially its council leader, who it appears all must obey, are incompatible with the interests of Bray Parish Council and the residents of the Parish of Bray.
I well remember parts of the old song - "The Vicar of Bray" - the vicar who would change his views with each change of monarch so as to keep his job and further his own self interest. History repeats itself sure enough!!
For "The Vicar of Bray" see;
Jerome Starkey, Countryside Correspondent
February 22 2017, 5:00pm, The Times
A "gung-ho" council leader planning thousands of new homes in the prime minister’s green-belt constituency has been rewarded with a top job in central government.
Simon Dudley was confirmed as a director of the Homes and Community Agency (HCA) today (Wednesday) after approving plans to build 14,000 homes in the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead, including almost 6,000 on green-belt land.
Critics claim the career banker wants to plough up fields and a golf course, which have been protected from development for more than 80 years, in excess of the borough's needs.
“Windsor and Maidenhead council has been gung-ho about allocating green-belt land for development,” said Paul Miner, from the Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE). “It would be very concerning if the new board began to take more of an interest in supporting the kind of poor-quality development that we have seen on protected land and other greenfield sites.”
Sajid Javid, the communities secretary, said the HCA was vital for “speeding up the delivery of new homes”. He said the appointment of Mr Dudley and three others to the agency's board would bring “new skills, knowledge and considerable experience”.
A housing white paper, published this month, promised to protect England’s 14 green belts, despite plans to solve a housing crisis by building 275,000 new homes a year. However, the document also gave councils scope to redraw their green-belt boundaries when “all other reasonable options” had been exhausted.
“At the end of the day, we need to help the creation of more homes in this country,” Mr Dudley said. “We need to be respectful of the green belt and maximise the use of sites other than the green belt. We live in a beautiful country but we do need new homes.”
The first green belt was introduced in London in 1938 and rolled out to the rest of the country in 1955 to preserve the characters of towns and prevent urban sprawl. Without them, campaigners claim, London could look like Los Angeles with a corridor of concrete and development stretching 120 miles from Brighton to Cambridge.
Mr Dudley said his plans would only reduce his borough’s green-belt land by 1.7 per cent. He said Windsor and Maidenhead was facing “a particular and acute problem” because 83 per cent is classed as green-belt land.
Patrick Griffin, from the Berkshire branch of the CPRE, said 262 hectares of the land earmarked for new homes in Maidenhead and Windsor was in the green belt. Nationwide, the CPRE said there were plans for 360,000 homes on protected land.
The HCA — which is due to change its name to Homes England — controls a £3 billion Home Building Fund, to help finance building projects.
“I understand the pressure and demands there are on local authorities,” Mr Dudley said, but added that he also understood finance.
“In reality, the HCA is a house finance bank so it has got to have people who understand finance on its board. I am a career banker and I am someone who brings a lot of experience in finance, risk and lending.”