How Harrogate is being ruined by its council leaders – Yorkshire Post Letters

From: John Upex, Harrogate.

is Harrogate well served by its local council?
is Harrogate well served by its local council?

I AM far from alone in feeling that Harrogate – ‘our town’ – has been taken away from us and is being destroyed by the actions of our local and county council councillors and officials following their own agendas irrespective of the desires of the electorate and residents.

Until about 1974, local councils were run more or less by local people – and the national political parties stayed out of it – but that changed 1979 or thereabouts.

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After that, it has been about voting for a national party candidate – and the councils themselves have been very definitely controlled by national party placemen rather than by local people who took an interest in local affairs.

is Harrogate well served by its local council?

So ‘we’ have our council leader as the leader of the national party with the most seats in the local council chamber.

Moreover, unless someone is prepared to bury their true principles and become a member of a national political party as one of their candidates, essentially selected by that party to be cannon fodder, then there is virtually no chance whatsoever of being elected.

The result of this is that local councils are controlled by either those aspiring to be prime minister, and going through the party machine to get there or those who have no hope of doing anything better but can get into power on the shirt-tails of the national political party machines.

I believe that it is high time that local residents ran our local affairs and the only way I can see of that happening is for local residents to put up candidates for election on ‘the local residents (party) ticket’.

How can towns like Harrogate be better managed in the future?

Our town has been destroyed by the antics of North Yorkshire County Council and by our local planning committee allowing the building of thousands of 
rabbit-hutch houses with 
gerbil-sized bedrooms and gardens only big enough for a dustbin.

There has also been no thought for the consequences on infrastructure (or lack of it) compounded by green zealots changing what roads we have into cycle tracks.

All this while removing parking spaces (except those kept to fleece people to pay for the lastest fad) and making the town centre, which should be the economic powerhouse of a town dependent on tourism, into an economic desert with 
boarded-up shops unable to attract custom, far less pay the business rates which these fantasists seem to think are paid out of nowhere.

So how about it Harrogate residents?

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