I must say I have kept very quiet on this issue, with the risk of the antiquated rules that mean if I said anything that made it look like I had an opinion on the matter I wouldn’t have been able to vote(!), in the end I wasn’t required to vote as we had a full complement of councillors at Development Control.
Now that the matter has passed, it is time for me to agree with the Development Control Committee. The fact it is Havens pulls as heart strings. However I think you have to take one step back from that emotional position when reviewing such an application.
There are a number of sites across Southend that could be used. The hospice had not managed to persuade council officers, let alone us councillors that they had considered all of those options and give good, valid reasons as to why Belton Way was the only viable option.
I’m no expert in lobbying – but an old boss of mine used to love tables, and I here she would have said “tables James, tables”:
|Xxxx||Not suitable because of x,y and z.|
On a personal note I feel very sorry for those people who have raised funds for Havens, seeing an awful lot of money being spent on this campaign. I really hope that this issue can now be put behind us, Havens will work with the council to find a way forward that will be to everyone’s satisfaction.