Executive’s disregard for the people of Penrith

Date: Monday 3rd December 2018

Sir, Like many people, I have been very sceptical about Eden District Council’s “consultation” (or whatever it is being called this week) on the Penrith masterplan.

I’ve now seen the project brief which was sent to firms thinking of tendering to be the consultants to develop the masterplan. This totally vindicates my scepticism.

The brief says (para 5.5): “The council will ultimately seek to engage with residents on the preferred masterplan … this is not likely to be possible under the current time and budget constraints.”

Instead, the brief proposed that only landowners, agents, developers, business, other councils and organisations would be consulted. Why should landowners who don’t necessarily live here be consulted and not the people of Penrith?

And what exactly were these “time constraints” which prevented engagement with residents? The brief doesn’t say, so why the rush? What legal timescales had to be met? The answer is of course that there weren’t any and no need for the public to be ignored.

This is more evidence of how the council executive, often meeting behind closed doors, have shown a disregard for the people of Penrith and their views. They have only wanted residents to be involved when they thought the masterplan was too far down the road to be stopped. How wrong they were. Yours etc,

DICK O’BRIEN

(Penrith and Eden Green Party)

By email