VOICE OF THE FENS: Why it's time to ditch this unseemly and lemming like approach to new Soham superstore

PUBLISHED: 18:45 16 May 2012

Voice of the Fens

Voice of the Fens

Archant

FRED Brown has a simplistic approach to planning best summed up in his own words: if a horse likes hay you don't feed it oats.

Thus his exposition of an approach which says what Soham people want Soham people should have, and in this instance a 41,000 square feet superstore.

So keen has the county councillor and former East Cambs leader been in his disposition towards such a development he has been offering advice, freely and when called upon, to the property developer concerned.

Fenland Council Leader Alan Melton has also been involved on the periphery introducing the same developer, Richard Sears, to Soham milk roundsman James Palmer, who is also deputy leader of East Cambs Council and also a county councillor. The meeting was to discuss supermarket and other possibilities on land owned by Cllr Palmer’s father.

What concerns us in the matter of Soham and its proposed supermarket is how quick a former leader, and now a deputy leader, of East Cambs Council have been to ditch years worth of work in the evolving masterplan.

Cllr Brown may well believe he is gifted in appreciating what the people want (indeed he says his talents are readily for hire by Mr Sears) but opportunism is not considered planning and councillors must ditch this unseemly and lemming like approach to a new Soham store.

For sure one is needed. Not here. Not now. Nor one collecting a council appreciation society on the scale we are witnessing.

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