Another day, another local newspaper. Today the Reading Chronicle was published, and like yesterday’s Wokingham Times the libraries debate at last Thursday night’s full council meeting features amongst the local news. And the Chronicle seems to have taken about as critical a line on this as a local paper can be expected to.
Without wanting to sound boastful, I do seem to have the staring role in the article:
“A WARGRAVE villager has slammed a debate on the future of libraries- the first in the history of Wokingham Borough Council to be triggered by a petition- as ‘a shambles’.
Matthew S. Dent was joined by more than 40 other worried residents at the council offices in Shute End last Thursday when a petition with more than 1,500 signatures- enough to force councillors to debate it- was handed in
He said ‘I think this would be a very short-sighted move by the council. At the debate, they seemed to miss the point that it is both services and buildings that people are concerned about.’
But Mr Dent said: ‘The whole debate was a shambles. I’d expect the council to review everything after the tender process anyway, regardless of the petition, not to go for it without a second thought. I don’t think this should be touted as a victory.’”
So well done Reading Chronicle. I said yesterday on Twitter that I’d love to be a fly on the wall of council leader David Lee’s office. I think that the mood of Wokingham’s Tories will be even more sullen today. Perhaps they should start listening to their electorate? Just a thought…