Wreath ‘of­fen­sive’

Buckinghamshire Advertiser - - NEWS -

A GIRL Guide leader has been left out­raged over the ‘of­fen­sive’ ac­tions of South Bucks Dis­trict Coun­cil (SBDC) at a Re­mem­brance ser­vice on Sun­day (Novem­ber 8).

Bea­cons­field based Paul Dree­lan, 42, has spo­ken out over a blank card that was laid with a wreath at the Den­ham Re­mem­brance ser­vice, say­ing it was up­set­ting to think that elected mem­bers ‘can’t be both­ered’ to write an ap­pro­pri­ate mes­sage in the card.

Mr Dree­lan, who lives on Maxwell Road, said: “I was deeply up­set and I was ex­tremely out­raged. It’s not ac­cept­able to put a blank card down at all, I was fum­ing.”

He added: “To be hon­est with you it deeply up­set me to think that the two coun­cil­lors could turn up and just place that down.

“It’s un­ac­cept­able really, it deeply up­set me, and I thought peo­ple should know and peo­ple should hear about how they have been act­ing on be­half of the peo­ple of Den­ham.”

He did say how­ever that de­spite the ser­vice saw a good turn out and there was a really good ser­vice.

“It was bril­liant for us to see the Girl Guides so well be­haved and that’s why I got so emo­tional,” he said. “The girls were do­ing me proud.”

But Mr Dree­lan said it was when he saw the coun­cil­lors lay the wreath down with the blank card that he got up­set, adding that it was not some­thing elected coun­cil­lors should do.

He said: “I would have had a card big enough to write what I wanted to say. It was really of­fen­sive to me. To see it blank, I just went in a fury.

“How dare they put a blank card down on be­half of the good peo­ple of Den­ham?”

Mr Dree­lan added that the two coun­cil­lors ‘should know bet­ter’, and that if they ‘can’t be both­ered’ to write on the card they should not have gone.

“I just don’t think it was ap­pro­pri­ate for the coun­cil to do that, send­ing some­one­and­not­both­er­ing to fill it in,” he said.

An SBDC spokesman said: “Each year the Coun­cil sup­ports Re­mem­brance Sun­day across the dis­trict by lay­ing wreaths to re­mem­ber those who gave their lives or suf­fered in­jury in the two World Wars and in the many other con­flicts since.

“It has since been re­ported to us that un­for­tu­nately one of the wreaths was laid with­out a writ­ten trib­ute.

“We would like to apol­o­gise for this over­sight and any up­set caused.” A LI­BRARY is help­ing peo­ple to get on­line af­ter launch­ing a new course this month.

Che­sham Li­brary in El­giva Lane, Che­sham, launched the Learn My Way course on Wed­nes­day, Novem­ber 4.

The course will run un­til the end of March 2016.

Three staff and one vol­un­teer will be de­liv­er­ing three one hour ses­sions per week on Wed­nes­day af­ter­noons (two ses­sions) and Fri­day PEO­PLE in Ger­rards Cross are stil fu­ri­ous they were never con­sulted over the de­ci­sion to change the sta­tus of the vil­lage to that of a town.

Dis­trict coun­cil­lors and mem­bers of the pub­lic rounded on the parish coun­cil to vent their frus­tra­tions at a meet­ing on Novem­ber 16.

First to speak was exdis­trict coun­cil­lor Deirdre Hol­loway, who said: “Many peo­ple are amazed to find that the parish coun­cil can ac­tu­ally de­cide that Ger­rards Cross is a town.”

She added: “The peo­ple of Ger­rards Cross have not been asked about it, they did not know about it.”

Mrs Hol­loway said a vote taken last year sug­gested peo­ple were happy with Ger­rards Cross re­main­ing a vil­lage.

She called the re­cent an­nounce­ment ‘to­tally un­demo­cratic’ and added: “Th­ese rea­sons should have been de­bated by the res­i­dents of Ger­rards Cross.”

The change will mean that from Jan­uary 1 next year, parish coun­cil chair­man Chris Brown will be­come a mayor and the morn­ings (one ses­sion) out­side Che­sham li­brary open­ing hours, us­ing the li­brary com­put­ers.

Che­sham Li­brary has been awarded £2,500 of HMRC fund­ing from the Tin­der Foun­da­tion to help sup­port 150 peo­ple in the Che­sham area to get started on­line.

Reg­is­ter your in­ter­est for the course or book with Che­sham Li­brary by email­ing lib-che@ buckscc.gov.uk or call­ing 0845 230 3132 or 01296 382 415. area will no longer be re­ferred to as a vil­lage.

It will bring Ger­rards Cross in line with other nearby towns such as Bea­cons­field, Amer­sham and Che­sham, all of which have may­ors.

Mr Brown backed the move when it was first an­nounced, say­ing that it more ac­cu­rately re­flects the size of the area and will give the vil­lage ‘more clout’.

Coun­cil­lors also said they be­lieved it would at­tract more busi­nesses to the area and in­crease the neigh­bour­hood’s pro­file and recog­ni­tion.

At the meet­ing Richard Grif­fiths said: “I’m con­cerned that any de­ci­sion which should be taken by the parish coun­cil which af­fects all of Ger­rards Cross, no­body has been con­sulted.”

South Bucks Dis­trict Coun­cil­lor San­tokh Chokkar, who rep­re­sents the vil­lage, said res­i­dents had been in con­tact with him over the de­ci­sion.

He added that the parish coun­cil should ‘con­sider’ any de­ci­sions that af­fects the lo­cal pop­u­la­tion, but in this case he said: “They [the res­i­dents] feel that wasn’t car­ried out.”

“The last thing you want is un­happy res­i­dents,” he added.

Speak­ing di­rectly to the coun­cil Mr Chokkar said: “The way of ar­riv­ing at this de­ci­sion should have been dif­fer­ent.”

In a let­ter to the Bucks Ad­ver­tiser Gwyn Owen said: “Is this the Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment process whereby the Parish can in­stantly de­cide that their re­mit is to cre­ate a new body – with its as­so­ci­ated ad­di­tional costs?”

He added: “The process of non con­sul­ta­tion is sig­nif­i­cant by its ab­sence. I won­der what is the con­cen­sus of views from the lo­cal res­i­dents.”

Speak­ing af­ter the meet­ing chair­man Chris Brown, who stands by the coun­cil’s de­ci­sion, said: “We are a qual­ity coun­cil and all our coun­cil­lors are trained and are work­ing for the good of the Ger­rards Cross com­mu­nity.

“We be­lieve the change of name from parish coun­cil to town coun­cil is ap­pro­pri­ate and there are no costs in­volved and there is no need for ei­ther a town coun­cil­lor or a mayor.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.