Challenge to Arun District Council for a public debate

A CHALLENGE to a public debate about who represents Bognor Regis has been issued to the district council.

The town’s civic society has invited the council’s chief executive, Nigel Lynn, and its leader, Cllr Gillian Brown, to attend its next meeting.

The invitation follows Mr Lynn’s response to Observer reports of a complaint about the council’s handling of regeneration proposals.

Hugh Coster, the civic society’s deputy chairman, said Mr Lynn was wrong to state only a small minority objected to the scheme.

“Mr Lynn has said in his letter that Arun would welcome a meeting with local residents,” said Mr Coster, “which is very welcome considering Cllr Mrs Brown has refused ten invitations to 
such a meeting over the past two years.

“So, we are issuing a public challenge to Mr Lynn to bring Cllr Mrs Brown to the next civic society open public meeting on January 10 at the Regis Centre so that we may debate who really represents the views of Bognor people, plus a few other things as well.

“If he fails to accept this challenge, it will be proof Arun has no intention of listening to Bognor people, which was what the complaint to the Department for Communities and Local Government was about in the first place.”

Mr Coster said only Arun’s cabinet of senior councillors backed the regeneration ideas for the Regis Centre and Hothamton sites.

That compared to the near 11,000 people who opposed a multiplex, the 10,158 against more seafront flats, those who voted no in the council’s consultation to the ideas and the views of the town council.