Are you for or against? It might make no dif­fer­ence

Kentish Express Ashford & District - - Points Of View -

It’s just pos­si­ble that you might, by pure chance, have no­ticed the ques­tion posed on the front page of last week’s edi­tion of the KE. In suit­ably bold type, the ques­tion was, ‘Can our town take AN­OTHER 700 homes’?

The editor in­vited us to say what we think.

I imag­ine that there will be three main lines of thought. Res­i­dents liv­ing in the Ken­ning­ton area are likely to have pretty strong ob­jec­tions of the usual kind; hordes of strangers com­ing into their home district, dis­rup­tion of traf­fic, in­creased strain on ser­vices such as schools and med­i­cal care and the de­struc­tion of yet an­other valu­able green­field site.

Those hell­bent on turn­ing Ash­ford into a me­trop­o­lis will be all for the scheme on the grounds of in­creased cash drop­ping into coun­cil cof­fers, per­haps to be spent on still more ec­cen­tric projects than some of the re­cent fi­as­cos.

The fur­ther ar­gu­ment might be that more peo­ple will spend more money in lo­cal shops, par­tic­u­larly the re­place­ment High Street, ie: the ab­surdly ex­panded Out­let Cen­tre.

The third line of thought will be the one so typ­i­cal of the much quoted ‘Ash­ford Ap­a­thy’, ‘They’ll do what­ever they want re­gard­less and, with so many fields around the place, who cares about an­other one go­ing any­way’?

Mrs B and I have been chat­ting about the forth­com­ing ref­er­en­dum re­gard­ing mem­ber­ship of the EU.

We have agreed to dis­agree. As things stand, she will vote one way and I’m in­clined to vote the other way.

Does this can­celling each other out mean we might as well stay at home on polling day?

Of course not. When­ever we are given the op­por­tu­nity to vote for one or an­other course of ac­tion, or for one or an­other political party in lo­cal and gen­eral elec­tions, it is ev­ery­one’s civic duty to turn up and make their mark.

Re­gard­ing the ref­er­en­dum, I am of the firm be­lief that we, as cannon fod­der, know far too lit­tle about the over­all pic­ture to make truly in­formed de­ci­sions; one set of busi­ness­men want us in, an­other want us out.

One lot of politi­cians want in, an­other out.

Both sides and their pub­lic re­la­tions ad­vis­ers will pull ev­ery pos­si­ble stroke to per­suade us that their way, and only their way is the right way to vote.

Whichever way it goes, it will af­fect all of us – even here in Ash­ford – so we’d bet­ter get it right.

‘She will vote one way and I’m in­clined to vote the other way’

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