I have this evening, 27 January, attended a very stormy council meeting at Poole Civic Centre, for the council to vote on a proposal to place a travellers encampment at Creekmoor.
Basically the meeting, which was also attended by about 100 Creekmoor residents, was a complete whitewash to which the residents were given no voice. In fact several times the Mayor threatened to eject members of the public for trying to speak out.
Whilst a large percentage of the councillors made statements regarding the costs involved and how exorbitant they will be, they still voted to pass the scheme and proceed with the encampment, as Poole residents you may think this will relieve you of traveller incursions this summer, think again.
The site will be for 12 caravans only, and a second site by B&Q, right alongside the children’s Skate Park for four caravans. However, if a group of 20 caravans roll up and can’t get in they will still end up on your parks and open spaces around Poole, and stay for their usual two weeks.
Well done Poole Council for another monumental non solution, wether you choose to believe it or not, the council informed all at the meeting that the site may never be used, or if so just for a few weeks a year, therefore another white elephant for the town, just like our wonderful park & ride.
Now for the kick in the shins, a fact that all Poole residents should be aware of, the cost to set up the site is a estimate by the council of £250,000, and then annual costs of circa £35,000 to maintain and control the site, even though it may never be used.
It was very interesting to hear Councillor Dion express her concerns about the costs involved but still voted for the site.
This is the lady that announced in the Echo last Friday that the council was cutting £100,000 subsidy from Wilts & Dorset buses, and that the council has to find cuts of up to £22 million in the next four years.
I have to give credit to Councillors Judy Butt, Les Burden, and John Rampton who fought hard to allow a deferment so that the public could be consulted properly. However they were defeated and no consultation would be afforded to the residents of the Borough.
The Lib Dems stuck together and produced a wonderful display of smoke and mirrors, to the cost of all Poole residents. Democracy in Poole is now dead.
I urge all residents of Poole to question their ward councillors as to why they feel that to waste vast amounts of taxpayers money, whilst depriving the electorate services for vulnerable people, toddler groups, and books for children at school is ok.
The reason the council state that this site is required, is because you as the residents Poole told them you wanted it, I would be very interested to know if that is true, if so thanks everybody.