December 13 2013 Latest news:
By John Elworthy
Tuesday, October 2, 2012
A ROW over whether toilets being sold by Fenland Council to Wisbech Town Council could ever be used for anything else is threatening their sale.
Town councillor Samantha Hoy questioned “why Fenland Council is is making life difficult for us when basically we’re doing them a favour by buying them?”
She’s a member of a working party set up to acquire toilets in Exchange Square and The Park now surplus to Fenland’s requirements.
However she is angry that covenants placed on their future use by Fenland Council could threaten the sale.
It’s a view shared by town and district councillor Jonathan Farmer.
Both he and town council leader David Oliver have come off the working party because of a conflict of interest by both being Fenland councillors.
Cllr Farmer told colleagues in an email that “it is known that some officers at Fenland are pathologically opposed to the localism agenda and it would appear that some of these conditions have been introduced in order to scupper the transfer”.
Cllr Oliver is also adamant covenants should not apply- especially to the Exchange Square toilets since they do not stand on FDC owned land. He agrees for the park toilets would be there to protect FDC if the town council decided to sell or build on the site.
However Cllr Oliver believes the covenants “should reflect that we may in the future obtain the transfer of the park back to the town council and that all covenants would effectively be null and void”.
Town and district councillor Dave Patrick says he has been opposed all the way through to the town acquiring something that was already owned by local people through the district council.
He added: “What a mess and waste of taxpayers’ money again.”