Monday 8 December 2008 7.57pm
Councillor Skelly's reply to me and my reply to him
Dear Cllr Skelly,
Thank you for you reply. I should also have thanked you for the time you give up on behalf of the community.
I do know that planning committees are quasi-judicial and I do know that our ward Councillors spoke up on our behalf. I have thanked them for that.
What upsets us is that we are working so hard to achieve compromises with local businesses, which your remarks simply wipe out the many hours of careful negotiation we have invested. We have reached voluntary management agreements with Gourmet Burgers and other cafes in Clink Street
and we would really like these management agreements, in which local businesses take responsibility for more than the limited area of their trading concern, begin to become policy in relation to planning approvals. We are not against these businesses nor their nature but we are finding as we get to know them that they recognise our concerns too.
You are right that my information comes from SE1 and that may be a misjudgement on my part, but if you did say what you said, you must surely see that, given the forum and your influence, future applicants will feel it easier to disregard our concerns.
For the record, we all live here as a result of granted planning permissions. These permissions and the period that we have lived here ALL pre-date the restaurants whose rights to contribute it being a less nice place to live, you seem to so unilaterally support. There was nothing here when we moved to Clink Street
and now the area is full of A3 uses. All we are trying to do is to co-exist happily and in that task we seek your support.
I do hope when future planning applications are considered, you will dig a little deeper below the surface to see what is actually going on.
Dear Mr. Morrison.
I expect you read the account in SE1 which was a somewhat abbreviated summary of the discussion. I think it is an excellent thing to discuss and compromise on these issues; I have done it on behalf of my constituents in Bermondsey Street
, which is why it was rather surprising that the objectors at the meeting were trying to get Gourmet Burger's planning application rejected completely. Councillors on the Planning Committee are not acting in a party political manner but exercising a quasi judicial function in response to the planning considerations placed before them. Two of your Lib. Dem. councillors spoke on behalf of the objectors and I'm sure deserve your vote at the next election.
Regards Bob Skelly