Last night was the town’s annual meeting where the residents get to question what the council has got up to in the previous year and raise issues they’d like to see addressed in the next one. The sad thing is that while the town councillors are the public face of local government, well over 80% of the services the town’s inhabitants enjoy (or not) are provided by the next two tiers of government – the district council and the county council. So… double yellow lines? Nope, county. Pot holes? Ditto. Planning? District… and so it went on. Litter? Oh yes, that’s us. Good to know we’re doing something for the community.
It is hugely frustrating that the people who know the town the best i.e. the town’s councillors, who have it’s vested interests closest to their collective heart, seem to have so very little input as to what really happens in our bailiwick. Which means that while we get the blame for what goes wrong, we’ve got our hands tied behind out backs when it comes to putting things right. Still, if, like me, you stick your head over the parapet, I suppose it shouldn’t come as a surprise when people take pot shots at it.
On the other hand, one local stood up and thanked the councillors for all their hours of unpaid work they put in. It was a lovely and unexpected accolade and made such a wonderful change from the normal comments which generally imply that we’re in it for the money, the back-handers and the bribes. Really? And no, we’re not. Anything but.