Response to @getsurrey article re funding for Haslemere station car park

Statement from Dr Louise Irvine re. today’s online article in the Surrey Advertiser: Haslemere station to benefit from increase in parking capacity

I attended the Haslemere hustings recently and one contentious topic up for discussion was parking in Haslemere.

Jeremy Hunt said to me that I needed to show leadership when a gentleman in the audience asked if I supported a multi-storey car park and I did not commit either way. I said my role, if elected as MP, would be to listen to and represent the views of the people of Haslemere on this issue.

It’s significant that there has been very little consultation in Haslemere on the multi-storey car park proposal. Jeremy Hunt himself, invited support only via his own website (now defunct) and did not carry out an open consultation. It should be part of the wider Haslemere Vision neighbourhood planning process.

I’ve done some more research.

Haslemere Town Council’s Twitter feed on the 10th April 2015 states:

“A decision on MSCP is for future council to decide. HTC currently has no plans to contribute towards cost.”

That would seem the right thing as we are in a period of purdah. But, it is a strange statement given that the minutes of the town council’s November 2013 full council meeting record unanimous support in item 130/13 to:

give the developer up to £1m towards the costs of building a multi-storey car park at Haslemere Town Station.”

Taxpayers could have missed it as the agenda for this full council meeting does not even have this topic listed as an item. The public were also excluded.

Leadership is not about pulling the wool over the eyes of Haslemere residents. My campaign leaflet has been delivered across the constituency and you’ll read that I’ll have no party whip and I’ll champion openness and honesty. These are solid foundations for decision making and leadership. I think Haslemere residents deserve nothing less.

Here is the new station car park at Farnborough Station. Haslemere, you’ll be paying a £1mn for something you’ve not been consulted on, no-one has explained how you will get that £1mn back and no-one has shared who will own what will become a very ugly structure in your pretty market town.

Farnborough Ramp for Station Car Park

Farnborough Ramp for Station Car Park

Farnborough Station Car Park - view from car park entrance

Farnborough Station Car Park – view from car park entrance

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3 Responses to Response to @getsurrey article re funding for Haslemere station car park

  1. An excellent piece – and good luck tomorrow!

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  2. Well said Louise. You are quite right that leadership is not bulldozing your way to decisions which have not been agreed with the local community. As ‘independent’ candidates we are free from political pressure to push one point of view and we can work in cooperation with all other parties as necessary. Good luck to you tomorrow and all independent minded candidates. Time for a change.

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