Thursday, 19 December 2013

I won!

As a thrice-confirmed cynic, I view my local Council's "public consultations" as mere window-dressing, simple lip-service to the ideal of democracy.  What council official holds to the view that people who live in a town, or a particular part of a town, might have valid views on what changes should be made in order to bring about improvements?  For that matter, what council official considers that councillors might actually know more about what people want?  Of course, my view is that the vast majority of council officials are firmly of the opinion that they know best, that what residents want is not always good for them.  In fact, what residents want is usually downright harmful, so it's best just to let them have their say and then ignore their opinions.  Of course, whenever a survey is to be conducted by way of public consultation, simply phrasing the questions correctly will almost always result in the right answer being given.

But this thrice-confirmed cynic might have to concede that the above is not always true.  It's not in the case of turning left from London Road into Oxford Street.  Somebody in the Council offices wanted to stop traffic performing this very straightforward manoeuvre.  Well, it is simple in this country where we drive on the left.  The idea was to improve "sustainable accessibility" - but the Lord only knows how stopping traffic turning left would achieve that goal.  Anyway, I pointed out that this would result in drivers making one of two detours, one of a mile into the centre of town, the other shorter but even more congested already.  And the council official has listened!  My view has been taken on board and the plan dropped!

Well, I shall happily take the credit for that even though I am well aware that there were probably hundreds (maybe just dozens - or even one or two) other sensible folk who made the same comment.


I hope the forecast for today's weather will turn out to be accurate.  There has been a distinct shortage of blue sky recently but the forecast for today is just partly cloudy.  I was delighted to see blue sky after it had become light; I just hope it continues for the rest of the day.  It is great to walk the dog over the Downs given a bright day like this one was.

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