Thursday, February 04, 2010

Sick and tired of hearing about poor old Mitcham

Not my words but the comments of Cllr David Williams, Tory Leader of Merton Council at last night's Council meeting in response to a motion criticizing the response of the council to the recent bad weather and the level of street gritting in the Mitcham area. Even by David Williams standards this was a remarkable comment, he has made a number of gaffes over the past four years, but this one takes some beating.

Nearly all Labour Councillors were amazed that he could say something so crass about the area. I am a Mitcham councillor, I am proud to represent Mitcham, and I will also defend the area against any Tory attacks. The attitude of the Tory administration towards Mitcham in the last four years has been shown in the collapse of any regeneration proposals; the debacle of the Christmas lights this year which attracted widespread ridicule in the press; and also the concern that many residents have about the way they see Mitcham as an area in terms of resources. In Pollards Hill, we saw first-hand with the travellers issue just last summer how the council effectively encouraged a traveller encampment on Mitcham Common.

Now Cllr Williams maybe "sick and tired of hearing about poor old Mitcham", but many residents are certainly sick and tired of his Tory administration, which we'll be reminding voters of over the next three months. Still when you've only had one Conservative Councillor elected in the Mitcham area over the last twenty years, it's not surprising that the leader holds these views as the both him and his Tory colleagues(though less gaffe prone than him!) have no real understanding of the area at all given that only one of their councillors out of 29 lives in Mitcham and even she is quitting at the election.


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