10:53am Thursday 12th April 2012
May I please request the courtesy of your columns to reply to the letter of Edward Wild from last week?
A considerable number of weeks ago I received, via the Conservative Office, a request from a pupil at Ilkley Grammar School to take part in a debate between the candidates at the coming election. I asked the secretary to reply noting the request, since when I have heard nothing until Mr Wild’s letter. Not surprising, as the candidates were only known when nominations closed on April 4.
As this is, of course, an election for Bradford Council, it may be that as Mrs Cryer neither lives in Ilkley (I believe she has been resident in Shipley for many years) nor has ever served on Bradford Council, she feels she needs a debate to find out what the issues are.
Having served the residents of Ilkley on Bradford Council for 22 years, and held monthly surgeries throughout that time, I am well aware of them. I am not noted as a political shrinking violet, and feel sure that all my residents know where I stand.
However, as nominations have now closed (April 4), if there is the will, now is the time for our agents to discuss any proposed arrangements for a forum around local government issues, rather than trying to arrange diaries through the columns of this newspaper.
Finally, Mr Wild’s attacks on the parish council are becoming tiresome and tedious. At the last parish council elections in 2011, the Conservative candidates were returned unopposed in three wards. An Independent opposed the Conservatives in the remaining ward, and was defeated.
If Mr Wild is as concerned as he says about plurality on the council, can he explain why the Labour Party did not put up candidates? Similarly, when the vacancies to which he has made allusion occurred, why did not the Labour Party exercise its right to demand an election? Surely not the fear of defeat?
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