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TISBURY PARISH COUNCIL This Tuesday the Regulatory Panel are to decide how many Parish Councillors Tisbury should have after the next Election.

The Suggestion is that their number be reduced from its current level of fifteen to just eleven. Statistically that is said to be the appropriate figure. Tisbury has not had the opportunity to elect a Parish Councillor for near enough twelve years. It seemingly propagates itself more through a cloning process than anything else.

Having no Election is not the fault of any Parish Councillor. It is merely that too few of us allow ourselves to be nominated for Office every four years. Reducing the number of Councillors should help to precipitate an Election May 2007.

When there has been no Election, it is necessary for those Councillors deemed elected, to co-opt others to fill the vacancies. I think this session there have been circa. sixteen such co- options. Does this signify the Councillors co-opted persons not best suited to be a Parish Councillor, or that some have been disillusioned in office?

Whichever, one may wonder at the sudden apparent Glut of willing Candidates between Elections. Where were all these persons on the days Tisbury should have had an Election?

It puts one in mind of that tomato ketchup business,
‘First none will come and then a lot will’
It was much the same with the TisVis Committee. Few volunteers after the first Public Meeting at the Hinton Hall. Then others arrived in an intermittent flow, most of them from that Public Spirited area best labelled as ‘Hindon Lane’.

One would regard it as axiomatic if co- opting new members for a Parish Council, that the Sitting Councillors balance their number with contrary voices, differing opinions. This is not how Co-options occurred in Tisbury. We are a semi rural Parish so Councillors need to be able to say ‘Neigh’ as well as ‘Baa’.

Thank you Parish Councillors for doing your best, but so far as I am concerned I have no confidence in your co-option process. On the day of your last effort several members of the Council failed to attend the meeting. According to that famed TisVis Survey Q23. only 35% of us thought that the Parish Council respond well to the views of the People of Tisbury. It is surprising that no Councillor took this as a vote of no confidence.

Some years ago a request was made that the names of Parish Councillors be displayed together with their addresses. One needs to know where people live. After some delay a list of Councillors was displayed, no addresses. Later we were advised contact should be made either through the Parish Clerk in the Donheads, or The Parish Council Chair. The reason given for not publishing the addresses was that they feared being burgled whilst out at a Parish Meeting. I am not sure that a Parish Council Meeting is a reliable guide as to whether they are at home or not. When I offered to publish the names, I was harassed with the Data Protection Act. Tisbury is not a fiefdom.

GUESS WHAT ? Very recently the names and addresses of all Parish Councillors have been inserted into the Parish Council Minutes on the shelf behind the door in the Tisbury Library. Further more last year’s Accounts have now been slipped into the good book.

Councillors are there to represent all the people of Tisbury, and it is our money they spend. I repeat that most Houses in Tisbury pay more precept to our Parish Council, than Pytt House Mansion pays to West Tisbury. That is why our two Parishes should amalgamate, why should Tisbury subsidise West Tisbury? Tisbury Parish Council gave that idea the thumbs down when asked. Maybe we might amalgamate with them ? John B. Pope.

That Sustainability Appraisal Report for Hindon Lane, Tisbury Draft Development Brief. Western Area Planning gave this matter preliminary consideration at their meeting at Bishopstone Village Hall last Thursday afternoon. Appearing for the Opposition was a member of the TisVis committee who treated us to an impressive oration of Statistics, gleaned from the TisVis Quiz Sheet. I wonder what the Western Area made of such mathematical erudition? I still maintain that the only relevant question TisVis posed related to a field adjoining the Nadder School. We all have the same right to express our personal opinions on local matters, however I do not see that the ‘Tisbury Action’ majority on TisVis has any brief to speak for Tisbury as a whole unless off that paper. I must share the collective responsibility for the questionnaire we put through everyone’s letter box. As I have written before, I was a member of TisVis Committee, and resigned from it earlier this year. The Questions posed were not initiated by any of us. There was a need expressed for a ‘paper trail’, and the necessity for ‘Gant Charts’ because the questions had to be traceable to members of the Community who had expressed them at the 2005 Church Fete, or the TisVis open day at the Victoria Hall. Consideration was also given to Verbal and written input. The points raised were first discussed around our Committee table, but the final wording of the Questions was refined further up Hindon Lane by a sub committee I was not invited to join. I had written in to the Chair with a few suggestions of my own. What would Tisbury think of a Wind Farm, of Tetra communication or further Telephone Masts. The centralised Call Centre for the Emergency Services. Did we still need the Sutton Row Television mast in these days of satellite receivers? ( Sutton Row has failed twice this month to my knowledge.) My questions never made it to the Committee, any more than did my input to that attractive Green Book of Statistics so skilfully prepared by other Committee Members. My information that at the time Station Works and the adjoining sites were fully occupied by the likes of UPS, Post Pushers, etc never made it in, nor did the Business fronting Nadder Close, nor did the very Lively Local Band Group ‘The Morellos’ get in the book, but someone’s Music Box did. Western Area was then addressed by a representative of ‘Tisbury Action’. That Gentleman too was on the TisVis sub Committee. There was a clear presentation as to why Hindon Lane was an unsuitable place to build houses upon. There was a supporting contingent of Hindon Lane residents. The Chair of the Meeting Cllr. Draper invited statements for the Plaintiff. Former Parish Councillor Felicity Corp was not against Housing being built on the Hindon Lane Site. Readers may recall that the late Mrs R.Corp was for many years the Tisbury District Councillor, and her Father ran a local School. I mention such detail because the Meeting was then addressed by our former District Councillor Roy Frankland. I believe he was the first Head of the Nadder School as was. I hope I do not misquote him by suggesting that he thought the Hindon Lane Site quite suitable for housing, and that the Station Works Site was needed by the local Business Community. He spoke of the great need for not only affordable housing, but to the need for local employment. I had my two pennyworth too, giving support to all that Mr. Frankland had said. I had already e.mailed the Committee with my equally boring set of statistical data, so avoided seeing eyes glaze over then. There was unfortunately a failure of the amplification system installed in the Bishopstone Village Hall. The Committee was then addressed by a member of Tisbury Parish Council. Due to the poor acoustics one did not hear what was said. Mr Frankland’s speech had been similarly affected, but being a man’s voice was more audible. It was after that, that the matter was considered by Western Area. One Councillor expressed the opinion that the development suggested, looked more Elstree Ersatz, than Tisbury. I am sure all the Councillors spoke. I believe the collective conclusion was that The District Council had no need to be landed with a swimming pool area as there was already the problem of financing the Sports Centre, but that apart it was the sort of scheme that would be acceptable for immediate development, providing no alternative site became apparent. All in best Fawlty Towers fashion, were forbidden to mention the Station Works Site, but someone did and thinks he got away with it. I believe there are now two possibilities. The first is that a Planning Applications is immediately submitted for the Hindon Lane Site, and if one comes in an accountable scheme would receive a planning permission. Failing that we await until next February to see whether anyone has been interested in keeping Station Works for current usage.

contact : John B. Pope
Tel : 01747 870 326
Email : pionono@tiscali.co.uk