The latest issue of the Teme Valley Times is now available from your local stockists, and once again it contains information and ideas provided by Tenbury Futures.
On their website they describe themselves "A Proactive Alliance of Concerned Local Residents and Businesses" and whilst they remain an "organisation" with no identifiable format or leadership, they seem to have decided to take the position of Town Council, Chamber of Trade and Civic Society to name just three local organisations.
Or is it they disagree with the democratically elected organisations so decided they would just ignore them and create sufficient confusion to get their opposing voice heard.
They claim that the "majority" this and the "majority" that, but if you look closely at the figures you will see that in fact what they really mean is the "majority" of the tiny minority who expressed an opinion or answered a closed question.
In their latest questionnaire they have replies from 32 shops, (out of nearly 100) so were the other shops not interested, did they have opinions that didn't meet the criteria, or did they feel that Tenbury Futures didn't have a mandate to be asking the questions, or did the questionnaires only go to the traders who they thought would give the right answers?
The Town Council and other duly elected representatives have been working and lobbying for many years to get the bridge repaired, and yes the closure will be a major inconvenience, but nothing compared to perhaps losing the bridge altogether in the next flood. If that happened, who would people look to for a solution? Tenbury Futures or the various Council officials.
I reported back in April that the bridge would have to close for repairs. Why is it only now six months later that there is a call to postpone the work? If the traders were so unhappy with the plan, why did so few attend the Chamber of Trade AGM, or at least have the subject raised as an agenda item. Is it perhaps that the chances of the Tesco application being approved is very high, and this is seen by Tenbury Futures (aka the TesNo group) as a way to also postpone the planning decision.
I think many of the ideas presented by Tenbury Futures have merit, but we live in a democracy with systems and procedures, so it's far better to join the establishment and try to change it from the inside than to keep floating ill conceived ideas in the press. Perhaps, these proactive residents can join some of the existing Tenbury organisations and invigorate them with energy and new ideas.