The local Labour District Council group have reiterated their opposition to the proposed new council office plans following last week’s dramatic election results. Due to the Conservatives losing their majority and placing the council in no overall control, the future of proposed new council offices plan is now deeply uncertain.
Councillor Geraldine Cullinan, Leader of the District Labour Group, said, “Labour is opposed to the new council office plans. We have been consistent in our opposition for over 18 months and have campaigned vigorously against the plans.
We have been supporting residents’ groups and local businesses to hold the Conservative leadership to account. With Matt Western MP, we started the petition against the new offices- a petition which now has 9000+ signatures from local residents. We will continue our vehement and consistent opposition to the plans.”
The Labour group has raised serious concerns about the complete lack of affordable housing in the office plans, the loss of public land and mature trees, as well as the absence of contributions to health and schools. Labour councillors have also worked hard with local businesses over concerns about there being no credible plan for parking displacement.
Councillor Jonathan Nicholls said, “The new Council offices project was being driven through without proper consultation with residents or businesses and with little if any public benefit. The lack of transparency and accountability the Council displayed with this project is frankly scandalous and I sincerely hope the plans will now be stopped.’
Along with local MP Matt Western, local Labour councillors have held numerous street stalls, gone door to door to discuss the issue with local residents and businesses and were prominent in calling for a public meeting to discuss the plans in late 2018. The local Labour team are continuing their campaigning and encourage everyone to sign the petition against the plans.