'Comments were offside'

PUBLISHED: 09:40 03 December 2008 | UPDATED: 22:43 15 June 2010

I am afraid I have to take issue with Tony Smith and I fear he has scored an own goal! The nearest to the townsfolks' voice, apart from EDDC, was emphatically not Peter Rowan, who did a stirling job by the way, but Honiton's own town council. Cllr Roy Co

I am afraid I have to take issue with Tony Smith and I fear he has scored an own goal! The nearest to the townsfolks' voice, apart from EDDC, was emphatically not Peter Rowan, who did a stirling job by the way, but Honiton's own town council. Cllr Roy Coombes attended every day, the town clerk was present on all but one afternoon (and this in the midst of dealing with the incredibly enhanced workload following the Mayor's death ) and other councillors also attended. The HTC submission was rigourously prepared and presented, reflecting accurately, succinctly and within planning guidelines exactly what this town felt about the appeal. Furthermore, with each opportunity he had to cross examine the Tesco "side", Cllr Coombes demonstrated his careful and meticulous, not to mention tenaceous, search for satisfactory answers to the points raised during their evidence. And has Mr Smith forgotten those "ordinary folk" who also carefully and thoroughly presented their views, all of whom were listened to with great courtesy and an awareness of the depth of feeling by the Inspector ? Honiton might not be in the Premier league, to continue Mr Smith's analogy, but fielded a much more than adequate side who acquitted themselves honourably and with great dignity. Our town council is often perceived as having no relevance in the great scheme of things. On the evidence of their significant contribution to the events of the recent appeal, this is not the case. Although technically, HTC was present in the capacity only of a consultee, significant points overlooked by EDDC were able to be put, thus countering effectively much of what Tesco claimed. As a result of this, and dialogue "off the pitch" with EDDC and to Adrian Trevelyan Thomas, their QC, he was able to use important new material in his closing submission. Mr Smith seems to be so far offside that he has missed major moves in the game! Liz Tirard Former town councillorHoniton

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