Points of View – Church Walk Development Letter

Dear Newsdesk, Thank you for the suggestion that local residents in Caterham might offer their views on the withdrawal of the Church Walk development plans. I am struck by the phrase "the town has always sat divided" as it suggests a good number of local people have been in agreement with the developer's intention. This is at complete odds with reality. Many will have been ignorant of the plans because

1) The developer went to great pains to avoid public consultation in the creation of this disgraceful design and

2) The two elected District Councillors for the affected ward, "Harestone", repeatedly refused to engage with their residents; either to seek their views, or answer the many understandable concerns. In reality, apart from these two individuals, Councillors of all parties in the area, including the six local Parish Councils, roundly condemned the plans. When the developer used this paper to try to cynically sell the idea, I wrote correcting many points of misinformation. I was subsequently approached by a concerned local reader with the suggestion she set up a petition against the proposal. This quickly garnered over 2,500 signatures, whereas an incentive-based pro-development petition could not find fifty and was quietly ditched…

Peter Monnery Harestone Ward

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