UPDATED!! West Adderbury Residents Association (WARA) recently emailed Adderbury Parish Council to ask again whether they could work together to open up the community land off Milton Road, while we wait for planning permission for the revised layout to come through.
In response, an email was received from APC Councillor, Oliver Ighani, which we are publishing at his suggestion, together with further correspondence. Can WARA and APC work together for the good of the community? Read on….
Note: These emails are rather long, so make yourself a cup of tea!
3 February 2021, WARA to APC
We refer to recent reports that have been published on the Adderbury Parish Council website and to the Cherwell District Council Planning Portal, where the application for a planning consent for the revised, reduced proposals for the new Adderbury Sports and Community Building Project (Application no. 21/00104/F) has been submitted just three weeks ago on 12th Jan 2021. There appears to be a conflict between what APC are reporting and what CDC are reporting regarding the commencement date for the works. APC are suggesting that the access to the site will be commenced when OCC construct the chicanes on Milton Road and Berry Hill Road in March 2021, whereas the planning portal does not have a decision date on the planning application until 13th April 2021. We understand that APC were proposing to carry out the tree felling and site clearance works imminently in February and your email to us responding to our suggestion that WARA would provide the fencing to permit the field to be opened up to public access confirms this. Your response stated that works would be starting in a couple of weeks so opening up the field for Public Access straight away was not possible.
In order to clarify matters on the commencement date for the Tree Felling works we wrote to CDC and have just received the response below from Matthew Chadwick which clearly states that “no works on site should take place without consent”.
It is clear therefore that Tree Felling works for the access cannot be commenced in February. Matthew also confirms that “the access point is in a different location to that which has been approved”. This means that the revised access location will be the subject of further consultation with OCC before it can be approved for construction which most certainly will take a number of weeks.
Cherwell District Council are confirming that no works can realistically commence until May when there might be a positive decision on the revised planning application. With this in mind we would request that you review our offer to open the field up as much needed amenity space for the local community. We attach a photograph of the fencing panels that we could transport to site and erect around the completed pitches within a few days if the Parish Council could work with us to make this happen.
We are hoping for a positive response to our request.
Kevin Underwood, Allan Ziff, Tom Osborne, Denise Mobbs, Sue Bradley
3 February 2021 – Councillor Ighani to WARA/APC
I think it would be in the whole villages best interest to publish all the WARA emails that we receive and let the village as a whole decide what they make of WARA’s intentions.
I’m not that learned on all the the semantics that are actually going on, but in my humble opinion it would seem that they are very keen on preventing the project from going through in its current format.
I’m not exactly sure why the objection, so possibly it would be nice to air this all out in public so we can get to the bottom of this.
Also i’m sure that, if what would seem to be WARA’s intention is, to stall or even abandon the project, then what would be the fall out from majority of the villages that do welcome the facility.
I’m not sure that they have given any thought to the possible repercussions if they are successful in preventing the buildings of such a useful site, if that is indeed their intention.
3 February 2021 – WARA to Councillor Ighani
This is a great suggestion – our email was published earlier this evening on the West Adderbury website at http://westadderbury.org/official-work-on-milton-rd-access-cannot-start-until-application-is-approved/. Please feel free to share this link, which includes the email from the planning officer at CDC, Matthew Chadwick.
It would be great if we were able to work together to open up the field to the public during lockdown, if only until planning permission for the revised layout comes through.
4 February 2021 – Councillor Ighani to WARA
Thanks you for your support in allowing the village to be involved in the decision making processes that affect the whole of the village.
On the Milton Road project subject i was wondering if you could clear up something that has been puzzling me for some while.
You ask for the land adjacent to the proposed sports site to be opened up for recreational use, yet it could seem you object to a recreational facility at that exact site.
Forgive me if i’m missing something here, but as a direct question, may i have a direct answer to the following.
Does WARA object to the Milton Road project and if so, why?
Also if this is the case, do you feel it’s right that your needs to be more important than those of the village as a whole.
Maybe if we could understand your intentions, we could all be better placed to heal a division that seems to be opening up, first over the CGR and now the sports facility.
WARA has responded by explaining that the committee (obviously, we cannot speak for all of our members) has no objection to a community facility on the Milton Road land, and would certainly prefer this to a housing development.
WARA has also suggested that Adderbury Parish Council and WARA work together on the many issues that affect our community – the first of which should be to open up the Milton Road land to public access while we wait for planning permissions for the revised facilities layout to be approved. To this end, WARA has again offered free fencing to protect the pitch areas.
WARA’s response to APC follows below:
4 February 2021 – WARA to APC
Thank you for getting in touch – we often email the Parish Council and get no response, so it is great to hear from you!
To answer your question very simply – no, the WARA committee has no objection to the creation of a community facility (i.e. a building, car park, MUGA, pitches etc) on the Milton Road community land. In fact, we would most certainly prefer to see a community building and associated facilities rather than a housing development.
WARA was set up around four years ago to try to address the increasing problem with traffic in West Adderbury, especially along Cross Hill, Horn Hill, Berry Hill and Milton Roads, where there have been many near misses and several incidents of pedestrians being clipped by vehicles. Time and again, residents were told there was no money for significant improvements (even now, OCC tell us there is no funding for 20mph speed limits). You will perhaps be able to appreciate that when the PC proposed spending in excess of 2 million pounds – a good proportion of it public money – on a sports facility, some people felt that the PC had its priorities wrong, and that a very small amount of that money would be better spent on improving road safety first, especially for our children who catch buses at the very dangerous Oak Tree junction, before moving on to other things. West Adderbury was outvoted on this issue by the rest of the village, and the frustration felt by many over this is probably what led in part to the CGR.
The Milton Road land has been used by local people for many, many years, and WARA is pleased to see the development of additional facilities on the site. Of course, residents of Henge Close quite rightly have concerns about noise, floodlighting, traffic and so on, but we are optimistic that these can be addressed along the way.
However, there are a number of issues of concern to WARA. The first is the way in which the work carried out on the site last year breached at least two of the official planning conditions set by CDC. Vegetation was stripped during the bird nesting season – this is against the law and is a breach of the Wildlife Act 1981. Site levels were changed without approval, and this was a breach of the planning conditions. An area of archaeological importance, designated as an “exclusion zone”, was also worked on without prior approval. WARA is also really concerned – as you will know – that the approved attenuation basin has not been constructed. As a result, water channelled away from the pitch areas is flooding adjacent land. This issue was brought to the PC’s attention last summer by WARA and by CDC, and we are really at a loss to understand why it has not been dealt with. There is a real risk of flooding to many properties in Adderbury, and we feel that not mitigating this risk by providing the approved attenuation basin demonstrates a lack of respect for those in the village who live with the risk of being flooded every day.
Our recent email refers to the fact that the PC has submitted a new application to CDC for a revised layout, including a change to the location of the access road. This application will not be approved until April 2021 to allow time for proper consultation, but it appears that the PC intends to start work before approval has been given. No developer should be permitted to simply ignore the whole planning process and commence site clearance and construction without any regard to the impact of his actions on the environment, his neighbours, the health and safety of others and the law. WARA does object strongly to the manner in which our Parish Council has conducted itself with respect to these matters. What the Parish Council does and the manner in which it does it reflects on the whole community, and we simply wish to be seen as a law abiding and respectful group of people. When our PC appears not to be following the same planning rules that the rest of us must follow, it also encourages developers to believe they too can cut corners and ignore the rules.
With regard to the Milton Road development, we would also like to see a bit more transparency so everyone can be sure that public S106 funds are being used efficiently – it seems that large amounts are being spent on consultants (Lathams, for example) and it isn’t clear why this is. WARA has been requesting sight of the commercial forecasts which hopefully will support the efficient expenditure of Capital Funds, and operating costs that demonstrate the financial viability of the project. They are at the end of the day public funds, so transparency with regard to the commercial aspects of the development should be a given. However, to date these details are being withheld. Essentially, we would like to see the Milton Road project being properly and carefully managed, so that it is something we can all be proud of.
A further issue of concern to us relates to the use of the new facilities. You will probably be aware of the rumour that the pitches and building were originally intended for use by the football club alone. When Andrew Green resigned as chairman of WFAC, he said that “I fear WFAC has become focussed on delivering the adult football element of this project. I fear what villagers would think if WFAC ended up backing a plan that saw a phased approach to work whereby a football pitch and a small club house were developed initially, so football could move to the site, with the other community elements to follow in due course, when funding became available. There is no indication this is what the WFAC Trustees are planning, but the two statements taken together indicate WFAC is failing to generate much interest other than a desire by some to get football moved to the Milton Road site”. WARA is committed to ensuring that all parts of the Milton Road community land and facilities will be open to everyone to use. We do not wish to see any part of the building reserved for use by a single group.
WARA is very aware that our intentions and wishes are being misinterpreted by many within our community, who seem to think that what we want is to split our village and stop the Milton Road project. Indeed, you have expressed that view again in your email. Whilst we have to take some responsibility for the opinions and views that people form of us from what we say, we would like to take this opportunity to clarify that it has never been our wish to split our community, but rather to try and achieve better management and representation of the whole of the village. With Adderbury growing rapidly both in terms of geographical area and population, we felt that spreading the accountability and authority for managing our community to a larger management team would improve the quality of what is ultimately delivered in terms of appropriate facilities and services, not only for the residents of West Adderbury, but also for the residents of East Adderbury and Twyford.
We hope that we have been able to clarify WARA’s views regarding the Milton Road project. There are many other issues on which WARA is actively working (for example, the proposed Henge Close development, Perry Tree Farm, footpaths, speeding) and we would welcome being able to do so in cooperation with the Parish Council. We do feel from the meetings that we have attended that there is little appetite on the part of some APC councillors to listen to, or have any respect for, our views. We seem to be being portrayed as the objectors and complainers who will always work against APC, which could not actually be further from the truth. We would welcome the opportunity to work with APC on our common objectives. For instance, it would be fantastic if the PC would take WARA up on its offer of free fencing to protect the pitch areas, so that the public can have access to this beautiful green space while we wait for the planning approvals to come through.
If you would like to discuss any of these issues, we would be very happy to arrange a Zoom meeting.
Kevin Underwood, Denise Mobbs, Allan Ziff, Tom Osborne, Sue Bradley
As an aside – we note that in summer 2020 Cherwell DC received an email from a land development company enquiring about the status of the Milton Road development. This email was received as part of our FOI request to Cherwell DC.
In the interests of transparency we will publish the Parish Council’s response once we receive it.
UPDATE: PARISH COUNCIL’S RESPONSE & FURTHER CORRESPONDENCE:
4 February 2021 – Councillor Ighani to WARA
Thank you for your response and I welcome much of the positive sentiment contained within.
It is very constructive to open up a dialogue, as we on the council do represent the whole of the community and seek to look after all the residents best interests. As you know the council are made up of volunteers that give their free time to improve village life.
It was important for me to clarify your position as you have by your own admission agreed that WARA’s aims and intentions haven’t been really clear and as you say you “ take some responsibility for the opinions and views that people form of us”.
Going forward hopefully we can count on your cooperation in making the Milton Road project a success. I understand that within your association you have members with very useful skills that could assist with the project and volunteers are always welcome.
On the very important subject of traffic calming we are making headway and indeed our speed watch program also needs volunteers, and if you do know of any associates that are willing to help, please do contact us.
The next PC meeting is soon and hopefully we will put something on the agenda in order to discuss the points you raised in detail and with full council approval.
We do have two councillors that are also members of WARA and hopefully with that bridge a new cooperation and positive atmosphere can ensue.
7 February 2021 – WARA to Councillor Ighani
Thank you for your response to our email of 4th Feb 2021.
We agree that it is constructive to maintain an open, honest dialogue and we do have a number of shared objectives that we should be positively working on together. We too seek to improve the quality of our services, amenities and facilities that exist in our village along with the infrastructure that that connects and holds everything together. With regard to maintaining an open and honest dialogue we would very much welcome a reply to our email to Adderbury Parish Council of 25th August last year (further copy attached) and hope that you might be able to draft a response to us.
We are pleased to have now clarified for you our position with regard to the Adderbury Sports and Community Project and we hope that you now understand that we do not object to the project itself but do object to the manner in which the Parish Council has managed the delivery of the works which have been completed to date.
We confirm that going forward you can count on our co-operation in making the Milton Road Project a success and we will assist where we can in gaining a positive decision from the planning committee on 13th April for the revised proposals for the development. We will also help where we can to properly discharge the pre and post-commencement planning conditions such that construction, as far as current funds allow, can start as timeously as possible. You are quite right that we do have people within WARA that are very experienced in the delivery of this type of project and they would happily volunteer their time to help ensure that the Milton Road Project is a success that our whole community can enjoy and benefit from in years to come.
We are very pleased to hear that the Parish Council are making good progress with the traffic calming and we attach a copy of the correspondence that we circulated to our members asking for volunteers to assist with the Speedwatch programme. We circulated this following Johnathan Whites request to us at the Environmental Committee meeting held on 26th Jan 2021.
We are encouraged by your proposal to put an item on the agenda for the next parish council meeting to discuss in more detail the points that we raised in our email of 4th Feb.
With Kind Regards
7 February 2021 – Councillor Ighani to WARA
Many thanks for your email this evening and i am very pleased and encouraged with its contents.
We do look forward and welcome any assistance and volunteers, especially those with high level and relevant knowledge. After all we are all in this together and producing a community centre where our villagers can enjoy recreation for many generations to come is in all our best interests.
Reducing speed and traffic awareness is of great importance and am very pleased with the decisions from your committee meeting to assist in the speed watch program.
With regards to your email from August, i’ve had a look back over correspondence and can assure you that we have been in contact with David Peckford at CDC and in roads have been made into calculations on basin size and drainage by an independent engineering firm.
I am in discussions with the other councillors about including items to be discussed on behalf of WARA. As i understand it WARA are represented on the council by two of your associates and perhaps you could contact one of them to propose the exact items to be included on the agenda. Once this is done the Clerk can can consult with the council in its entirety and i am very hopeful time can be made to discuss WARA’s concerns. You did kindly send me an email with several questions but if you could ask your either of your two council representatives to specifically lay out items to be included in the standard report template and submit to the clerk in good time before the next meeting.
They will have a copy of the template i’m sure but i have attached it below for you as belt and braces.
I am hopeful that with this new air of unity the village may benefit going forward.
Thank you for your swift response to our email.
With regard to our offer of assistance with the successful delivery of the Sports and Community Building Project we can bring experience and knowledge in the following areas:-
1. Liaison with Planners to fully and properly discharge planning conditions.
2. Liaison with Design Consultants in co-ordinating the design to ensure an efficient affordable design is produced that fulfils the aspirations of the Client team.
3. Value Engineering to ensure cost of delivery meets budget
4. Cost advice and adjudication of tenders for all aspects of the development.
5. Advice on sourcing funding that is available from organisations such as Sport England and the Football league.
This list is not exhaustive so please advise on any areas that you feel we may be able to assist.
Our offer to request volunteers from our members to help with the speed watch program was as a result of some of our committee members attending the APC Environmental committee meeting where Johnathan White asked if WARA could help.
We have not had a massive take up to date so we will target this towards those members that we know have offered help in the past.
The size and details of the approved infiltration basin have been designed by Forge Engineering Design Solutions Ltd. They were appointed by the Parish Council to discharge condition no3 of the planning consent and their design has been approved by OCC. If APC wish to change the design that will entail an application to change the planning condition. This would not be advisable since any Engineering Consultant will calculate that the min capacity would have to be 100.8m3 to provide the required attenuation for the under-pitch drainage that has already been installed by DW Clark Contractors. There may be recourse to DW Clark depending upon their terms and conditions of engagement and whether they were obliged to deliver the approved scope of works. We would be able to help with this also if you wished for us to review their Subcontract. The question within our letter of last August which is still of genuine concern to us is “what are the intentions of APC with regard to installing the approved Attenuation and infiltration chamber?” This will stop the overflow and flooding from the undersized basin that is happening now.
With respect to the queries that WARA would wish to discuss at APC’s next meeting on 23rd Feb they can be listed as follows:-
1. When will the approved attenuation/infiltration basin be installed?
2. When does APC plan to commence work on the access road to the development?
3. Can access to the field be opened up as much needed amenity space for the public if WARA provides fencing to protect pitches?
4. Can WARA have sight of the business plan for the development giving details of the viability of the project?
5. Can WARA have sight of the operational plan for the development giving organisations that are likely to be using the facilities?
We would appreciate you forwarding these questions as agenda items to be discussed at the APC meeting scheduled for 23rd Feb 2021. We are sure that you will understand that we are constrained by GDPR requirements in terms of disclosing any details about our members, which includes the organisations that they are free to choose to be affiliated to. In addition we would request that any communication between us is directed through our committee members, such that due diligence is respected and consistency is maintained.
With Kind Regards,
Kevin Underwood, Denise Mobbs, Allan Ziff, Tom Osborne, Sue Bradley
8 February 2021 – Councillor Ighani to WARA
Many thanks for your email this evening. At the last council meeting, (i have asked the clerk to double check the zoom recording), two of your associates freely declared their membership of WARA, for which I believe to be a helpful association that has recently declared its intentions to cooperate with both the Milton Road Project and Speed Watch, whilst we do of course fully respect the rules surrounding GDPR, we are not asking you to disclose any identities nor would this ever be our intentions, and in any case this is unnecessary as they have already identified themselves , and as you, i assume are proud to be members of such a helpful association.
Being this as it may i think it wholly appropriate that WARA direct their questions and views for clarification via the most suitable and efficient channel of communication via their own members. This makes perfect sense, and i am sure you agree ?
What can be more suitable than WARA’s own members on the council to voice WARA’s needs and opinions, this is an excellent opportunity to reunite the community and come together and work together for the outcome of the village as a whole.
The items for which you seek clarification that may be attached to the agenda would have to follow the correct protocol and i would ask you to engage your members in order to fill in the standard report template that i attached on my last email. This would be the most appropriate course of action. Please ensure this reaches the Clerk in good time so that the opportunity is not missed.
9 February 2021 – WARA to Councillor Ighani
We must confess to being slightly puzzled by your latest email.
As you are aware, WARA is NOT represented on the current Parish Council, and there is no reason why it should be. There may be parish councillors who also choose to be WARA members, but this does not mean that it is their right, responsibility (or even wish) to “represent” WARA on the PC. By law, unless a Parish Council is warded, ALL parish councillors must act in such a way as to represent ALL parishioners. As such, there can be no WARA “representatives” on the Parish Council.
Indeed, some Parish Councillors who live in West Adderbury may not share any of WARA’s views, but may have joined simply to engage with and understand the views of their neighbours in West Adderbury. We have no objection to this and actually encourage and support it, as we have nothing to hide, but clearly such a person could never be considered to “represent” WARA.
Having checked with the other WARA committee members who were present at the last PC meeting, none of us are able to recall any parish councillor publicly stating that they were a member of WARA, and Theresa has already advised us that the recording of the meeting has been deleted.
As you know, under GDPR we cannot disclose the identity of WARA members under any circumstances. We note that you also have chosen not to identify the Parish Councillors you say are members of WARA. Although we are sure this is not the case, your email could be interpreted as an attempt to “out” any councillors who are WARA members.
WARA wishes to work together with the PC to help improve our community. As previously discussed, we are willing to assist with the Milton Road development to try to ensure it provides appropriate, efficient and value for money facilities that are open for use by everyone. We have also asked our members to assist with Adderbury Speedwatch, which will benefit us all.
Since we have no other means of getting items of interest to our members on the agenda for the next Parish Council meeting, we are again asking you for your assistance. Although we are members of WARA, we are also parishioners, and so we are hopeful that our Parish Council will be willing to discuss our concerns. However, as you rightly say, agenda items must go through official channels, and as you are the only Councillor to have reached out to us in recent times, it appears that we are reliant upon your support. As we understand it, if a Councillor asks for an item to be put on the agenda, the clerk cannot refuse unless there is a good reason to do so.
We do appreciate the positive approach that you have taken towards WARA, and it would be great if you were able to encourage other Councillors to do the same. It seems to us that a fresh, positive approach is what Adderbury requires to abolish the so-called “toxic culture” that has developed over the last 20 years or so.
Kevin Underwood, Tom Osborne, Allan Ziff, Denise Mobbs, Sue Bradley
Unless a Parish Council is “warded”, all Councillors must represent all areas of the parish. “Warding” allows Councillors to be elected by a specific part (ward) of the Parish in order to represent only that part. Cherwell District Council have suggested introducing warding in Adderbury, and Adderbury Parish Council have just submitted a response opposing this suggestion.
9 February 2021 – Councillor Ighani to WARA
Thank you for your email this evening, although i am also quite puzzled by your response.
I have been communicating with you as an individual Councillor to a group known as WARA, indeed i’m not exactly sure which member of WARA i am actually conversing with, as you, as the actual author of these emails have remained anonymous.
Your communication to me has always been addressed as WARA and as such, i am quite right and without prejudice able to believe that i was communicating with the whole group, body, or association and therefore free to converse with any member or associate on equal terms or understanding, and with full transparency and disclosure.
In your last but one email you suggested and i quote :
“we would request that any communication between us is directed through our committee members, such that due diligence is respected and consistency is maintained.”
Although i’m still in the dark as to which actual committee member, that writes as an individual parishioner, that i am in talks with, and would ask if you are prepared to reveal your identity out of respect, although this is not a requirement.
Also as a result, am i to understand it, that not all WARA members are in agreement with the views of the committee members. ?
As I understood it, WARA are an association that have come together to represent a section of Adderbury and are represented with one voice. Your last emails is rather confusing to me as you speak of and i quote:
“your email could be interpreted as an attempt to “out” any councillors who are WARA members. “
This i find to be a highly odd comment as i simply have been trying to suggest that an associate of WARA who is also a Councillor, would be better placed than me, to put questions to the council that they need answering, and what is even more puzzling is why the abstention.?
After all, this is all for the good of the community. Nothing needs to be veiled in secrecy and full transparency should be upheld.
Your comment above suggesting “outing” as you put it does actually cause me quite a bit of offence for which i was shocked and for which i will consult with the council and clerk as to the best course of action to deal with this particular matter .
Now it does rather suggest in my humble interpretation of your email, that WARA as an association wishes to remain anonymous and therefore, this does somewhat restrict advancement.
I find this rather disappointing as i’m sure you will understand. The whole reason for opening this line of communication was to seek a bridge, from what would seem , some individual parishioners that quite rightly wish to scrutinise and hold the council accountable for its actions, but to do this anonymously and without transparency and under the banner of a body that may or may not have all its associates on side, does rather draw to a close any more that i can add.
I would again implore you to engage your associates who are on the council and take this wonderful opportunity to finally break through as you say
“ so-called “toxic culture” that has developed over the last 20 years or so.”
I will again direct you to the standard report template for your associates to request an addition to the agenda. The sooner this is done, the sooner it can be addressed and to this end I feel I must now ask you to direct your questions in the most appropriate manner, via your associates who proportionately more than represent your association in comparison with the whole of the Parish.
At this stage, we would like to point out that ALL of the emails on this page have been copied to ALL Adderbury Parish Councillors, and during this time the WARA committee has not received any communications from anyone on the Parish Councillor besides Councillor Ighani. Preumably any Councillor who was felt comfortable to disclose their membership of WARA could have come forward. Considering the personal abuse received by WARA members, this is perhaps not surprising.
10 February 2021 – WARA to Councillor Ighani
We are saddened by your response. Your comments regarding anonymity are also confusing, since each of our emails to you has been signed by the WARA committee, with our committee members’ names supplied. We repeat them here for your convenience – Kevin Underwood, Allan Ziff, Denise Mobbs, Tom Osborne, Sue Bradley. Clearly, the emails to you are from us, the WARA committee.
Adderbury Parish Council is not warded, therefore WARA (and West Adderbury as a whole) does not and cannot have any “representatives” on the Council. ALL parish councillors must represent ALL parishioners. It would be highly inappropriate for any councillor to put themselves forward as “representing” WARA.
You have still not identified the councillor(s) you claim are WARA members. We are genuinely not aware of any councillor having publicly acknowledged being a member of WARA at the last meeting. There is no recording of this meeting, it has been deleted. Please understand that even if we were to ask a particular councillor, who was also a member of WARA, to submit a form to the council on behalf of WARA, the very act of asking them would disclose their WARA membership and WE WOULD BE BREAKING THE LAW as set out under GDPR. Keeping the details of WARA members private is not lack of transparency or a desire for secrecy, IT IS THE LAW.
The WARA committee are all residents of West Adderbury, therefore we are all Adderbury parishioners. You kindly suggested in your email of 4th February that “you will put something on the agenda in order to discuss the points that we raised” in our email of the same date. We welcomed your proposal, and listed for you the five points that we would like to discuss at the next Parish Council meeting. As one of our elected parish councillors, it is your role to request that items of concern to parishioners are placed upon the agenda for the council meetings. It appears to us that you are now refusing to execute your own suggestion of raising an agenda item to discuss our concerns, but please let us know if we have misunderstood.
We hope you will appreciate that WARA’s compliance with GDPR regulations is a matter of great importance to us. We are obviously disappointed by your response, but we hope that we can continue to cooperate in other ways in the future. The WARA committee stands by its offer of assistance, and we look forward to working with you.
(Kevin Underwood, Allan Ziff, Tom Osborne, Denise Mobbs, Sue Bradley)
10 February 2021 – Councillor Ighani to WARA Committee
On one of your recent emails, you did mention a so called ‘toxic’ culture. I have reflected on this comment and it is that which saddens me. No resident of a village wants to be immersed in such an atmosphere and going forward and emerging from this Global Pandemic, residents need to look to each other for support and to generally feel neighbourly.
It is with this in mind why I personally believe why the parishioners first rejected the split of the village and secondly rejected the warding of the parish. I think its now time for all of us to come together and think of Adderbury as one village with no divides, East, West or North and South.
I think looking back over the history of this culture you mention, I think there may be some factors that may have caused some villagers to even reject the recognition of WARA altogether. I am not such a person, but in the interests of keeping villagers informed, some important questions need to be answered.
- How was WARA conceived and how is it governed?
- How was the election of committee held and how many members are there in WARA?
- Are the minutes of all meetings available for all parishioners to scrutinise, as decisions made by WARA can potentially affect other residents of the village, namely the CGR and the Wardship?
- Is the association recognised, by that I mean the legal term ‘Recognised’, and I’m sure you know the criteria required, as a percentage of households in the area concerned? The reason why I ask this particular question, is because looking through your social media, general likes and comments to your posts seem to have very low response, this is not a criticism but just an observation, which goes back to the original question of how much support is there in the association. Indeed, on one of your Facebook posts there seems to be a ,one and only reply, from a resident of West Adderbury claiming WARA only represent a few people and not the whole of West Adderbury.
- Your constitution mentions that only households to the West of the Sor Brook are only eligible to join, as this defines West Adderbury as a distinct settlement, but then it states further on, that subject to special General Meeting that this association area can be modified. Can this area be modified to include the whole village and Twyford?
- Your constitution doesn’t mention whether WARA is an Incorporated association or an Unincorporated association, because I’m sure you are aware that an unincorporated association is not a “legal entity” in law. So, it has no legal rights and is not separate from its members. It follows that individual members are legally responsible for the acts and omissions of the entire organisation. This is a very important point for your members to be aware of, and perhaps should be in the constitution. With this in mind it could be argued that each and every member of an unincorporated association does indeed represent that association, please correct me if i’m wrong on this point, as it on this point why i say a Councillor who is also a WARA member, is also responsible for the actions of WARA and thus is best placed to pose its questions to the council. So i’m not saying the councillors would be representing WARA on the council but they are in the ideal position to ask questions on behalf of a body they are individually and legally responsible for. A bit of semantics but again, please do check the law on this matter as i am a little rusty on all laws regarding formation of an association.
I would once again thank you for your willingness to help with projects in the village and would ask you to follow the correct protocol in offering these services. On the Milton Road project, WFAC is the group tasked with this, and please feel free to approach them to enquire about how you can get involved and what the criteria are first required to join the WFAC, and then what areas of expertise they may or may not need.
On the subject of the agenda for the next meeting I can confirm we will be including a report regarding your third question, namely, ‘Can access to the field be opened up as amenity space for the public, if an group parishioners referring to themselves as WARA provides the fencing?’
Finally, I would like to conclude with actually asking, to which individual parishioner am I actually exchanging emails with? I think this is a fair question and simply to reply ‘The WARA committee’ does come across as avoiding the question. After all, in my responses I haven’t simply written ‘From Adderbury Parish Council’ and then listed off all the councillor’s names. I think out of transparency and respect this is a fair comment.
Given the abuse received by WARA members in the past, the WARA committee has chosen not to expose individual members. Our committee emails are drafted between the WARA committee members (Kevin Underwood, Allan Ziff, Denise Mobbs, Tom Osborne and Sue Bradley). This ensures that no single person can be singled out for special treatment – such as, for example, Adderbury Parish Council contacting that person’s employer to complain about them.
12 February 2021 – WARA Committee to Councillor Ighani
Thank you for your response to our email of 10th Feb 2021.
We do now seem to be simply exchanging emails and failing to address the important matters that this dialogue opened up about.
We suggest that we could get to meet each other and answer any questions that you may have about WARA and us and, you could answer or take away the five questions that we have listed on a Zoom call. We can also discuss our respective concerns with regard to our members who happen also to be Parish Councillors raising questions on behalf of WARA at parish council meetings, rather than them being raised by you as was originally proposed.
We would be very happy for you to attend with anyone that you feel may be of benefit to our meeting.
Should you be up for such a meeting please provide us with some times and dates that would suit you.
(Kevin Underwood, Denise Mobbs, Tom Osborne, Allan Ziff, Sue Bradley)
12 February 2021 – Councillor Ighani to WARA Committee:
Thank you for your email, but i must kindly refer you back to my previous email, before any further progress can be made, and also as you stated in your email from the 9th February and i quote:
“ There may be parish councillors who also choose to be WARA members, but this does not mean that it is their right, responsibility (or even wish) to “represent” WARA on the PC.”
I have to assume that you would afford me the same rights? , and as such and I am truly sorry but i do feel as though any further response from myself can only be to an actual Parishioner, with whom approaches me with their identity.
I can also add that any questions that any individual parishioner has, can be forwarded to the Clerk who is the Proper Officer and who ultimately decides what questions or items get on the agenda, as per our standing orders.
Also i notice you have published all our email exchanges on your website, except for my last email. You did state on your website that for transparency you would publish all the emails, if this is what you wish to do, then i can’t understand why you would truncate the exchange and not let your members see the full conversation?