An unattractive side of politics

PUBLISHED: 11:34 15 July 2008 | UPDATED: 15:49 11 May 2010

I WOULD like to add to what has been said in Postbag about the Conservative Party and its attitude to local affairs. Your correspondents are talking about Royston Town Council, but I encountered exactly the same attitude from the Conservative Party at the

I WOULD like to add to what has been said in Postbag about the Conservative Party and its attitude to local affairs.

Your correspondents are talking about Royston Town Council, but I encountered exactly the same attitude from the Conservative Party at the time of the recent elections.

It may be remembered that as chairman of the Mordens branch of the South Cambridgeshire Conservative Association, I made a stand in supporting our local independent candidate, Cicely Murfitt, against an imposed candidate standing for the Conservative Party.

I was continually told that the only thing that mattered was that the Conservative Party should keep control of the council.

What we, the local people, thought and wanted seemed to be of no interest whatsoever to the Conservative Party.

We persisted in our support for Cicely Murfitt and she won an overwhelming majority, while the official Conservative candidate was more or less abandoned by the party.

That is not, I suggest, the way to run local affairs, let alone the way to run a political party.

It is, if I may say, a disgrace and that should be made clear to the local Conservative Associations.

In reality what is happening is that a few politically motivated and often domineering and bossy individuals gain control of the local party and it is these people who want to make all the decisions while everybody else within the party grouping is expected, if not compelled, to toe the line.

It does not matter what the local people think.

They are there to be manipulated.

I have long held the view that local affairs, at this level, should be taken out of political control.

After all, one is working in small local units, issues are almost always localised and what we, the voters, want is somebody to represent us who preferably lives locally and who we know, who will listen to what we have to say and then act in our interest.

In the olden days when my father was chairman of the then Hitchin Rural District Council most, if not all, councillors stood as independents and things got done.

It is only since the politicising of local affairs that the rot has set in, and what we see today is, to say the least, unattractive.

JEREMY FORDHAM

Odsey

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