Falcons and peregrines over the beach and magpies in the council chamber…

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March 26, 2014 by Whispering Smith

Whispering Smith Column published in the Littlehampton Gazette 13th March 2014

WHEN I first learned of Arun District Council’s duplicity in the last minute alteration of the leisure part of the accepted and fully consulted Neighbourhood Plan without further consultation of the electorate or the Littlehampton Town Council, my reaction was to dash for my typewriter. Then I read Gill Brown’s placatory comments trying to put a positive spin of their skulduggery, I gave  up. Battle weary, I asked myself: What is the point? Arun goes it own sweet way and really has little care or respect for Littlehampton,  merely seeing our fair town as a cash cow, a place to raise money for their hare-brained schemes that will, in all likelihood, never see fruition but will nevertheless cost us dearly. The swimming and sports Centre and The Windmill, we see them as belonging to the people, community assets, Arun sees them as belonging to them alone, places to build yet more housing and thus raise more capital to squander on yet more consultants. Any future referendum is now clouded and our only real redress will be at the polls in 2016 when, for good or bad, the current cabinet may well come a cropper at the hands of independent candidates or the ubiquitous UKIP. For my part, perhaps it is best to save what energy and ammunition I have left in my armoury until that time.

ON A happier note, but maybe not so much for the feral pigeon involved, I had the extraordinary experience last week of seeing one of my favourite birds in action right here on my street. A peregrine falcon, dropped out of the darkening, evening sky onto the pigeon, killed it and ate it. Slaughter on Western Road.

NOW Cllr. Dendle is suddenly a fervent fan of The Windmill Cinema? Why this overnight conversion when it was his duplicitous cabinet who took it from us and left us with a year of darkness? The councillor has a short memory whereas we moviegoers, by our very nature, have rather longer ones!

I HEAR that the main drag through the new estate to the north of the A259 is to be called Benjamin Gray Drive so well done Alan Gammon for drawing that slice of local history to our attention.  

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