On naughty step...

I read with some amusement the response from Hugh Coster to my letter regarding free parking in Bognor Regis.

It seems Mr Coster enjoys putting words into people’s mouths, and implying they are actually saying something entirely different – in my case, asking council taxpayers of Bognor Regis to pay twice for free parking.

My question would be: where does he expect the money to come from?

After all, there is no such thing as a ‘free lunch’.

As much as it pains me to say it, someone has to pay.

It seems strange no-one in Littlehampton has campaigned about having to pay for the free parking scheme there. In short, the scheme works for everybody.

In Bognor Regis, a two-hour visit, once a week, for a year in the cheapest car park at Fitzleet, would cost £15.60.

The estimated 17,000 residents of the four central wards would be paying £6.82 per year for two hours’ free parking. Less than half of the cost required to park now.

Mr Coster continuously talks about candidates and councillors who live outside the wards not knowing or caring about Bognor Regis.

However, as a resident of Middleton on Sea, he is allowed an opinion.

That is his right, just as it is everyone else’s.

I lived in the Hotham ward for several years before moving to Felpham, and I know the area very well as I am involved with Predators Football Club and Aldwick Cricket Club, both of whom are based in the ward.

I fulfil all the required criteria to stand in the ward of Hotham, as does Mr Coster. However, he would seem to want to elect himself as the Voice of the People, rather than let the voting public do it!

Moving on, I’ve looked at the Civic Society website today, and read with some incredulity the following quotation:

“Below is the list of Bognor Regis area Arun District Council election candidates.

“They are in alphabetical order by surname, and although we do our best to ignore politics, it must be mentioned there is a certain political resonance in who has and has not pledged.

However, there may yet be some changes, so watch this space!

“To some, no pledge is an indication the person is either ignorant of the wide public, commercial and community support for the free parking petition, or simply doesn’t care and is content to ignore the wishes of the people of Bognor Regis.

“Neither can be regarded as a good attribute in one who is seeking election to public office.”

Honestly, were I a barrister, I would be shouting “Objection…leading the witness” to which the reply would be “sustained”.

Now Mr Coster will no doubt seek to justify this ‘opinion’ being put out by the Civic Society but it is somewhat aloof to suggest just because someone does not sign the pledge, they are ignorant or do not care.

What a ridiculous thing to suggest!

The self-appointed Voice of the People is talking utter rubbish.

And talking of rubbish, I was somewhat disappointed to not receive my own naughty boy link on the Civic website.

However, it seems that myself and all the others who have not pledged can now be classed as using ‘sneaky tricks’, which does have a link!

I was also heartened to see the reply sent by Jan Cosgrove, a well respected campaigner and councillor.

He also received the letter from Hugh Coster and took the same view as myself.

And Mrs Nash, I will certainly make room for you and all the others who are certain to be banished to the ‘naughty step’.

Perhaps Mr Coster will ensure we all do our 500 lines: ‘I must sign the pledge or be forever called sneaky’.

David Edwards

Conservative Party candidate

Hotham ward

Alfriston Close