Letter to NWN

From: chair@ncfg.uk

Sent: 17 September 2018 11:38


Great support from the public, shame about our Councillors

Dear Sir/Madam

Great support
from the public, shame about our Councillors

Newbury Community
Football Group (NCFG) held a very successful public consultation last Thursday
13th September at the Document House regarding their recently submitted
planning application for a state of the art 3G
pitch and new clubhouse facilities at Faraday Road as over 100 people attended
over the two sessions. The interest shown by general public reflects the
increasing public awareness and support for NCFG’s campaign to save and develop
Newbury’s football ground. The current NCFG petition, launched only 10
days has already received support from 1800 people.

is in stark contrast to the interest shown by our local Councillors.

sent letters and emails to all 52 West Berkshire Councillors and 14 Newbury
Town Councillors (66 in total) inviting them to “Councillors
pre -public consultation discussion”. The invitation stated that “Rightly or wrongly we
feel that the Councillors of West Berkshire Council and Newbury Town Council
are not fully aware of why a significant number of the local electorate and
their young families, think that it is really important to preserve and enhance
a community football ground in Newbury. As such we would like the opportunity
to arrange a meeting with you to discuss the key points and to share with you
with the evidence that makes this such a crucial and important local issue. We
sense that the Council’s current position is entrenched in as much as a
“vision” floated a number of years ago could mean that the town’s only football
ground will be sacrificed to build 80 or so more flats near the town
centre. ”

5 Councillors accepted the invitation and 21 declined. However even more
worrying for local democracy and despite being sent a reminder 40 Councillors
totally ignored the invitation. Despite this really disappointing
response from the Councillors NCFG will try again to arrange another session
for Councillors to ensure that more than 5 of them will have the chance to
understand why this is such an important issue.

Paul Morgan

Newbury Community Football Group (NCFG)