As reported in the Observer of the 22nd December, Chichester District Council leader, Tony Dignum, encouraged his council to vote in favour of the southern option2 A27 bypass route, despite admitting he had a personal reason for doing so.
In his own words he stated that he had given all the assistance he could to ‘the mounting campaign’(?) against any northern bypass which, were it to succeed, would pass 250 metres from his own house.
He says he was entitled to an opinion as any other person would have been. Of course, he was. But, shouldn’t his first consideration, as leader, have been what was best for the entire district’s future transport well being? He would make a very good ‘not in my back yard’ (West Broyle Drive) spokesman but does he have the vision to guide the city of Chichester’s needs for the next 20 or 30 years?
West Sussex County Council, which bears the brunt of road planning, has a leader who was faced with the same decision and she took a different and wholly admirable track.
A complaint was lodged about Tony Dignum’s remarks and was referred to an in-house mediator.
Had it been a police complaint it would have been investigated by an outside body. Transparency? It was no surprise that the complaint was dismissed.
Steve G Mann