Monday, February 19, 2018

Goodbye as Chris Wells answers his own question

Thanet District Council posted a long-winded press release which is contained below describing the last occurrences for Chris Wells as leader of Thanet District Council.

Apart from Chris Wells and a few of his cabinet colleagues I doubt there'll be many tears shed, Chris Wells and his co UKIP colleagues were elected in the main not only because of their right wing views but because they claimed that they would be strongly supporting the campaign to have Manston Airport reopened and not as he latterly supported a housing estate.

To councillor Wells credit I feel that during his time in office as leader there have been fewer financial calamities than has been seen in other administration's but really he should have gone a long time ago if he stood on a platform of Supporting Manston and then quickly folded to the propaganda of outsiders he should have still stood aside for one of his colleagues who was capable of following election promises.


Thanet District Council Leader, Cllr Chris Wells and Cllr Bob Bayford (Leader of the Conservative group), met on Friday 9 February 2018 to discuss the changed group arrangements within the Council Chamber. Cllr Bayford indicated as Leader of the largest group he would move to form a fresh administration. Cllr Wells agreed to step aside to minimise disruption and maintain stability at the council by ensuring a vote for a new Leader without the disruption of a vote of no confidence.

Cllr Bayford said: "This is an appropriate way to recognise the changed council groupings and a sensible way forward following the fault lines that emerged across the Chamber during the Local Plan vote of 18 January 2018."

Cllr Wells has today (Monday 19 February) given formal notice of resignation as of Wednesday 28 February, allowing the calling of an extraordinary council meeting to take place on Thursday 1 March to elect a new Leader for Thanet District Council. Deputy Leader, Cllr Lin Fairbrass will be Acting Leader for the period between the resignation taking effect and the results of the Leadership election.

Cllr Wells said: "It has been a rare privilege to lead this council through some difficult times, facing declining budgets and increasing demand for services. My resignation recognises a simple fact of political life, that an administration needs to win votes to get policy through, and an administration supported by 13 or so of 56 Councillors would be a highly unstable proposition. The uncertainty that would create damages the smooth running of the council, something so many have worked so hard to maintain in challenging times."

Given the next stage will be a Full Council decision to elect a new Leader, neither Cllr Wells nor the council will comment further until the result of that election is known.

Thursday, February 08, 2018

Chris Wells - The Leaders Numbers Add Up = Time to Go

Chris Wells in last week's Gazette says “The numbers add up, we must build more homes on the site of the airport” (Manston).  I myself don't share such  unquestioning belief, in my opinion, I feel that figures can be deceptive I'm sure there are a few figures that Chris Wells would question, particularly those relating to the number of his fellow members of UKIP in Thanet who would be quite happy, were Chris Wells to do the thing they require him,  to resign.

Assuming that Chris Well’s view is correct, that there is no evidence that an airport would be sustainable, why doesn't he just roll over and allow airport people to be given a chance, particularly as he was elected on basis that he would support Manston.  

Based on information provided by my Google home mini device, I understand that the UK average household has 2.3 people and 1.2 people working and each household has almost whole car 95% of it. So if that is correct, we can look forward to the prospect of an extra 7,000 patients for Thanet’s broken health service, 3,000 cars crowding roads to Westwood. 

As for jobs to support those buying or renting homes on Manston’s, new housing estate Stone HIll Park, we’ve yet to see the nearby commercial site vacated by Pfizer fully recover, I can only imagine that for Stone Hill Park housing development to prosper it will need the new Parkway Station so people can commute to jobs in London.

What has always amazed me about the debate over the Manston Airport site is that nobody has suggested anything other than housing or airport use, admittedly It would be incredibly expensive to rip up Manston’s bombproof runway which I guess is why the developers of the new housing estate are featuring a “heritage” runway.

I don’t think there have been any significant material changes to the local economy or geography since he was elected, so maybe having been elected on a policy he now believes wrong, the least he could do is resign as leader and a member of UKIP which would free him up to have private lunch meetings, such as the one he had in November with Ray Mallon without all that outrageous nonsense about council protocol.