Pass the buck!

News of last night's Place Shaping Committee meeting has been filtering though and it appears that although disappointed with the response rate to the Rackheath Exemplar consultation, the members absolved themselves and the council of all responsibility for the low returns. The phrase "You can lead a horse to the water, but you can't make it drink" was apparently uttered.

Members were under the illusion that everyone in the area had received their own copy of the explanatory booklet and accompanying questionnaire and it seems that there was general agreement that this had happened until an officer sheepishly said that no, this was not the case - copies were available at the council offices or at the local shop and posters had been put up advertising the fact. So members then looked for someone else to blame and struck upon the notion that the Parish Clerk must be to blame as there was also the mysterious case of the Neighbourhood Planning Vanguard information not being received by Rackheath.

It so happens that our Parish Clerk in Rackheath is a particularly efficient person and meticulous in her work and it seemed grossly unfair to put the blame upon the Clerk who was not there to defend herself.

The whole fiasco of the consultation was apparently allowed to go unchallenged once they had found their scapegoat. The real reason fore the low response rate was that the local community do NOT want either the Exemplar or the proposed eco-town and they have said this time and time again but the Council do not listen. No-one listens. At one public meeting a parishioner called for a vote of no confidence in the Council and this was overwhelmingly supported by hundreds of local people. Local people are fed-up with sham consultations and this was reflected in the low response rate. Ambivalence? Pah!


  1. 'scuse my ignorance but what the hell is a place shaping committee? What is place shaping? Is this a recognised term, or has BDC invented it as part of their unwritten policy of keeping the public as much in the dark as possible? It really is quite astounding that BDC go so far as to affect names for committees that obscure their raison d'etre.

    Come on Angie - what do you say about this?

  2. I think they call it Place shaping because the Council believes it is mandated to tell us all what to do.
    They are so good at it that they manipulate their system to ensure that they can avoid listening to anyone who disagrees with them. That includes their own members. Some arrogance.
    Once they have finished shaping it, we will be left with a floodlit urban desert and the shysters will be long gone with pockets full of money... and our Norwich will have been replaced by anytown.
    The blaming of everyone else is typical of the breed.

  3. Angie Lena Jolly4 February 2011 at 15:19

    What have I got to say about it? Well you people in SNUB are just a small group of troublemakers but don't worry we will get our way. Concrete and Yellow lights for all.
    Why bother trying to influence us, you know it is hopeless.

    20,000 people coming down your way soon.

    We are invincible!

    (with apologies to James Bond fans)

  4. Actually the last comment is nearer the truth than the writer probably knows.

    We see Officers taking the lead from Proctor who members of the public remember sitting with a smirk on his face throughout a Public Meeting at Rackheath.

    At the EiP the selection of Council staff who were not actively involved with proceedings treated contributors with much the same contempt.

    Now I learn that at the Place Shaping Committee this week, some attending Officers found that process amusing. It all appeared stage managed The agenda was rushed through by the Chairman, even being cut short at the end. The trouble is that being disrespectful towards members is worse when it is noted by public visitors.

    Actually it is quite unacceptable and tells us that something is seriously amiss in the management at Broadland District Council.

  5. Scrivener is dead right, especially his/her last sentence. BDC's take on local politics would make many an Italian politician smile.

    The trouble is, the likes of Proctor keep getting re-elected! His constituents in leafy Brundall won't be affected by any of the GNDP's megalomaniac development plans and will probably vote for him again in May. Is there evn any serious opposition? What is Labour & the Lib-Dem's position? As far as I can see they are both as spellbound by the prospect of massive expansion of Norwich as the Tories. Where are the Green Party? Are they even putting up a candidate?

  6. How dare Broadland DC try and blame the very hardworking and accurate Parish Clerk at Rackheath for their bad organisation. They have always been so useless at Consultation, but of course it suits their Developer Friends. Just who is paying who ?

  7. Place Shaping is the desire to cover all the NE Triangle of Broadland in concrete so that food shortage will increase as well as flooding. It is also required to shape the profits of the Developers to a nice fat sum.