Coun­cil­lor in need of a reality check

Harefield Gazette - - OPINION -

I HAVE no in­ten­tion of us­ing the Gazette news­pa­per as the bat­tle ground for a let­ter war with coun­cil­lor Gard­ner, or any­one else, but I must re­spond to coun­cil­lor Gard­ner’s un­true and un­war­ranted attack which fea­tured in your May 25 edi­tion (Let­ters, ‘Take a pos­i­tive look at Hayes Town’).

I re­fute cat­e­gor­i­cally that I suf­fer from ‘ob­vi­ous to­tal neg­a­tiv­ity’ or that I am in need of a ‘reality check’.

The only part of coun­cil­lor Gard­ner’s let­ter that is fac­tual, ac­cu­rate and real is her ref­er­ence to the fact that ‘time and peo­ple change’.

Un­for­tu­nately for those of us who live in the real non po­lit­i­cally mo­ti­vated world, the changes in Hayes over the past 12/13 years have not been en­cour­ag­ing.

Labour, of whom coun­cil­lor Gard­ner is a mem­ber, have over­seen this de­te­ri­o­ra­tion as all of Hayes’ coun­cil­lors are mem­bers of the Labour party.

With re­gard to coun­cil­lor Gard­ner mak­ing ref­er­ence to ‘crime sta­tis­tics’, she knows as well as most that it is be­com­ing ever more dif­fi­cult to estab­lish and recog­nise what the au­thor­i­ties class as a crime, and that po­lice sta­tis­tics have been ques­tioned of­ten in the me­dia re­gard­ing their ac­cu­racy.

Groups of young peo­ple ‘hang­ing around’ does con­sti­tute a crime ac­cord­ing to the Ox­ford Com­pact Dic­tio­nary and its com­pan­ion pub­li­ca­tion Com­pact Th­e­saurus.

I sus­pect that both of those fine pub­li­ca­tions are bet­ter placed to com­ment on the se­man­tics of the English lan­guage than coun­cil­lor Gard­ner?

As for th­ese gangs just hav­ing a laugh, I sug­gest that coun­cil­lor Gard­ner her­self is in need of a reality check, which I am sure any of their vic­tims will be happy to pro­vide her with the prob­lems that are blight­ing Hayes can­not be re­solved un­less they are first recog­nised as ex­ist­ing.

I am aware that change ‘does not hap­pen overnight’ nei­ther did the de­cay?

I can­not com­ment on the re­main­der of coun­cil­lor Gard­ner’s let­ter as it makes ref­er­ence to is­sues that are on­go­ing.

How­ever I note that she makes no ref­er­ence to my com­ments re­gard­ing street beg­ging, street drink­ing, the gen­tri­fi­ca­tion of Hayes, in par­tic­u­lar the van­dalised/ dam­aged pave­ments.

This is in­ter­est­ing and I would ad­vise that coun­cil­lor Gard­ner re­move her rose tinted glasses when walk­ing about Hayes, else she may trip over one or more of th­ese haz­ards. BERNARD FA­GAN Avondale Drive Hayes

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