So Eric Pickles visited the region last week and was interviewed by Peter Waters the Editor of the EDP. The results of this were published on Saturday 29th Oct and were headlined as a “wide ranging interview”.
They talked about the following:
- The proposed incinerator at Saddlebow
- Fare fairs for local public transport
- Weekly rubbish collections
- Back door unitary by local authorities sharing back office services
- Local Police commissioners
Nothing was mentioned about the NDR, the Postwick Hub or the Joint Core Strategy (JCS) that calls for 36,000 houses. Yet this was meant to be a wide-ranging interview and misses the opportunity to discuss with a senior government Minister proposal that will, if they go ahead, the face of Norwich and the county forever.
When SNUB challenged Peter Waters about the lack of EDP coverage of these proposals and particularly the JCS he responded that the EDP was a county newspaper and concentrated on the issues that impacted the county. The Evening News was a city based paper and was best placed to report on these issues. Excuse me but are they not both owned by Archant? Is this the problem?
By the way Mr Pickle had this, among other things, to say:
“He (the Prime Minister about the incinerator) can say exactly what he wants to say about it he is responsible in law for it. I am as the Secretary of State”
“I am by nature a gabby person…”
“My dear chum. I should not be a democratic politician if I did not have faith in democracy…”
Judge for yourself but I cannot recollect Ministers of State using words like “gabby” or “chum”! And as for being a democrat and believing in democracy well that’s perhaps why he didn’t answer any questions about the incinerator. Is that why Peter Waters did not ask him about the JCS? Both of which have had local residents state in local polls that they are against these schemes. Democratic decisions!