Wednesday, 28 October 2009

Does Thanet have a Conservative run council or not?

Walking round Ramsgate this morning and looking at aspects of the failing infrastructure and the lack of sensible investment, I got to thinking about the way we have been governed under this administration.

One question that I find very hard to answer; is are we being governed by a cabinet with Conservative ideals and policies?

Obviously the people of Thanet voted for a Conservative administration and from this one would assume that they were asking for a cabinet that was made up of a majority of Conservative politicians with Conservative ideals.

What I am wondering however is if the majority of the cabinet members stood as Conservatives, not because of their ideals but because they thought by standing under that party banner they would have more chance of being elected?

This then begs some further questions like:

Where do those councillors with genuine Conservative ideals that never get into the cabinet stand?

What do the local Conservative associations think about this and would they continue to endorse the actions of the cabinet regardless of how far from mainstream Conservative policy they get?

What does the local Conservative whip really mean in terms of the way it is directing policy and is it in fact silencing genuine Conservative voices?

What do the Labour group think about this, do they consider themselves to be an opposition to an ideology or to the random desires of an unidentifiable group?

Do the Labour group prefer the status quo and see it as furthering their chances of being elected?

How should someone with a genuine Conservative ideology vote in the local elections?

As a floating voter I expect there to be pros and cons with being governed by either of the main political parties.

Something I do expect with local Conservative government is for there to be a core of Conservative councillors with experience in commerce, industry and technology and for those councillors to be bringing this expertise to form the core of the leadership.

Another thing I expect is that when we have a Conservative lead district council and a Conservative lead county council, as we do at the moment, is for our district council to get at least a fair share of the county resources for our district.

Now here in Ramsgate our basic infrastructure, roads pavements, cliffs, harbour etc is all just falling to pieces and I wonder why this should be the case.

I also expect a Conservative administration to have its fair share of small shopkeepers, like me they may not be the brightest peas in the pod and if this is the case shouldn’t be holding senior positions, but I would expect them to ensure that the interests of small shopkeepers were protected within the trading environment.

Anyone that has been to Margate recently will see that this has obviously not happened and I wonder why this should be the case.

This is what the Conservative party’s website has to say about their local government policy.

“Conservative councils are greener, helping to improve the local environment and protect green spaces in our towns and villages. They are safer, fighting the crime, anti-social behaviour, vandalism and graffiti that ruin people’s quality of life. And, at a time when people are being hit by the economic downturn, they offer better value for money.”

Does this sound like the the way our cabinet are guiding council policy?

Is there anyone who would like to leave an expanded comment on what Conservative policy is at district council level?

I will probably add to this as the day goes on, please if you comment avoid personal references to individuals.


  1. A perfect fence for some stunning grafitti don't you think!

  2. Michael,

    Here is a little historical fact for you. Every Conservative administration that has ever been elected at TDC has within its ranks someone who has either stood against the Conservatives or been a opposition councillor from another party.

  3. I suspect are correct in your assumption that some current Conservative Councillors stood not for the good of their constituents but for the furtherance of their own agenda. I further suspect that such individuals are scattered across a number of councils in the UK but here in Thanet we seem to have more than our fair share. I wonder whether some of our elected Conservative Councillors have any understanding at all as to why they were elected and the fact that they should be voicing the concerns of their communities and not those of their bank balance.

  4. oh michael, get real, most councillors of any political colour are there because they want a better thanet, but i will admit , a few are there for the wrong reasons, so lets live and get on with it.

  5. Ken, I am not trying to be cleaver here and appreciate you commenting under your own name as a Conservative councillor, but what I am trying to get at here is there any difference between what a Conservative run council would be expected to be like, than one with a cabinet made up of a mixture from people from different parties?

    Would, should the common cohesion of Conservatism make them better or different ins some way?

  6. Sorry I meant clever no cleaver, I believe this sort of Freudian is inclined to occur when politics is on my mind.

  7. I could hardly belive my eyes when reading 'Our Kens' comment. Labour, Tory, Labour, Tory etc, is he not Thanet's most Chameleon Councillor? Any Party will do who will have me or real shifts in political outlook? I would hope for the latter but suspect the former.
    That said, as a former NTCA member I am advocating Sandra Hart as the best choice for the electorate in Dane Valley in lieu of Panama Broadhurst, so where does that put me?

  8. Bertie, I think that puts you as using common sense.

    On a note to Ken Gregory, if you know of councillors who "are there for the wrong reason" shouldn't steps be taken to get rid of them. Are some of those councillors on the planning committee by any chance?

  9. Ken G. says " so lets live and get on with it."

    So that shows how he thinks regarding corruption! He needs to think again about this, it wont be the first time he has changed his mind.


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