Tuesday, 23 February 2010

Lanson residents will face 100 mile planning round trip

Cornwall Council has confirmed that the decision on the major waste transfer station at Bangors Lane will be taken 48 miles away from Launceston. There are no other applications on the agenda for the meeting and so there seems to me no good reason for the meeting to be anywhere other than in Launceston.

Yesterday when I found out that the meeting was set for Truro, I asked the Council to urgently reconsider the decision. Today they have replied to say that, because the agenda has gone out saying Truro, people may become confused if it is switched. Not that this has stopped the Council changing the location for other meetings late in the day.

They also claim that there are no suitable venues in Launceston and so people would have to travel to Wadebridge. I believe that there are suitable venues that could be found in the town (and in any case, they seem to have forgotten Camelford, which is a lot closer than Wadebridge).

But the principle remains. When this Council was set up, they promised that decisions would be made as close to the people they affect as possible. They promised that this would not be a Truro-centric authority. So why on earth was this meeting not set for Launceston from the outset? And why is it that other meetings can be moved (such as the Binhamy Farm application in Bude and the Penzance Harbour development) but not this one?

Given that it appears the battle for this meeting to be moved is not going to be won, I have asked the Council what measures they are planning to assist local residents who want to attend. Attending will be expensive for those with a car and could be next to impossible for those without as the lack of public transport means that it is impossible to make it to Truro for a 10am meeting. I also asked whether the Council would arrange for the meeting to be available by video link or webcast.

So far I have had no response on any of these questions.

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