Frontbencher quits party over leader
A CONSERVATIVE frontbencher has resigned and will now sit on the council as an independent.
Cllr Richard Dolinski, who was Executive Member for Adult Social Care, Health and Wellbeing, was due to announce his decision at the start of the council meeting but left the chamber instead.
A prepared statement from him was would have seen him said: “It is with sadness that with the change of council leader I have decided to resign from the Conservative Party and will therefore stand down as Executive Member for Adult Social Care, Health and Wellbeing.
“I want to take the opportunity to thank the previous leader,
Cllr Haitham Taylor, for the trust she placed in me in leading on what is a challenging portfolio.
THE COUNCIL will be hoping that a letter won’t get lost in the post – it relates to the proposals to close Wokingham’s town centre Post Office and swap it for a kiosk in WH Smith.
James Box said that the proposals had “caused a lot of concern” and wanted to know what the council would be doing to save this valued service.
Cllr Stuart Munro said: “Cllr Philip Mirfin will be writing to
Post Office Counters Ltd to ask that they reconsider their position of moving the Wokingham Post Office into the WH Smith store in light of the investment that has been made in town centre regeneration”.
A full debate took place later in the evening. A report appears on our website.
“I want to express my gratitude to the exceptional Wokingham Borough Council officers, the staff of Optalis and our partners for their dedication and hard work.
“I am particularly proud of the consideration outcomes we were able to achieve for our residents.
“I have thoroughly enjoyed serving the residents of Wokingham Borough and will continue to do so as an independent councillor.
“I have no further comments to make.”
A CONSULTATION into a proposed new park and ride site at Thames Valley Park will take place early next year.
Cllr Anthony Pollock, the executive member for highways and transport, was responding to a question by a campaigner for the group Save Our Ancient Riverside (SOAR), which wants to stop a single lane bus lane bridge being built over the historic Thameside.
RESIDENTS anger over plans to build more than 1,000 homes in Barkham were brought to the council chamber on Thursday night.
In September, a petition was presented to the council triggering the debate. It urged councillors to discuss proposals which would be in addition to the 3,500 homes
already planned for the area.
Chris Heyliger opened the debate by setting out the views of the residents they represented.
Mr Heyliger said that the residents had been told they were wasting their time as the borough didn’t listen.
“Given this strength of feeling I suggested it was time to begin listening and demonstrate your commitment by initiating actions, making resolutions and delivering results that address the concerns of these people.”
Borough Mayor Cllr John Kaiser temporarily stood down so he could take part in the debate and represent his residents, revealing that Wokingham MP John Redwood was supportive.
A fuller report on this debate will appear on our website.