Lack of interest works both ways
WITH reference to John Crockford-Hawley s letter headed 'Obsessed with finances', what do we need North Somerset Council for?
WITH reference to John Crockford-Hawley's letter headed 'Obsessed with finances', what do we need North Somerset Council for?
The Parliamentary and Constituency of Weston, which equates roughly to the old Winterstoke Hundred, represents a natural unit. It has a community of interests.
As Mr Crockford-Hawley pointed out, no-one in Portishead, Nailsea, Backwell or Clevedon is interested in Weston and its hinterland. This lack of interest works both ways. The residents of Winterstoke Hundred have little to gain from the reinstatement of the Portishead to Bristol railway link which is so important to the residents of Portishead.
Because North Somerset is among the richest areas in England in terms of average income, Whitehall sees no reason to allocate special money to the district.
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The general affluence of North Somerset hides the fact that the town of Weston is home to some of the most deprived people in England. A Winterstoke District would attract necessary funding from Central Government, rather than leaving Weston, with all its social problems, to the tender mercies of an indifferent North Somerset Council, which is dominated by the wealthy fringes of Bristol, with their reluctance to see any of their money, as they see it, going towards Weston and its surrounding areas.
Most of North Somerset's operations in the southern half of the present district should be devolved to a Winterstoke District Council, with North Somerset only retaining any strictly necessary residual powers, although I am at a loss to know what those might be.
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Member of Weston Civic Platform