Friday, 15 November 2013

Tell Us A Joke Councillor...

While the Beddington Incinerator is not a Worcester Park specific issue, it is a London Borough of Sutton issue and councillors from all over the borough are involved in the decision making process of whether to allow such things within the borough boundaries. Worcester Park Councillor Stephen Fenwick (Lib Dem) was one of these for this particular decision. During the Development Control Committee meeting which voted to allow this incinerator, Cllr Fenwick made a speech about why he had voted against it the previous time but was now choosing to support it.

Dave Pettener from the ‘Stop The Incinerator’ group has made a slightly mocking video of Cllr Fenwick, using his actual speech from that public meeting. It is too humorous not to share, especially if you are interested in who it is currently representing Worcester Park on the council.



For those interested, Cllr Fenwick lived in Beddington until very recently. Also, for those even more interested, all Liberal Democrats on the committee voted for the waste incinerator. The Conservatives voted against it but being that there is currently a 4:1 ratio of Liberal Democrats to Conservatives on the council (and therefore on this committee), the permission was effectively waved through by the Lib Dems.

Update (17th November)

The 'Stop The Incinerator' group have sent me a very nice email thanking me for highlighting this issue and asking me to include a link to their petition which is https://www.change.org/en-GB/petitions/stop-waste-incineration.

Update (Feb)

One or two people have expressed disappointment that I have posted this video parody of a Sutton Councillor elected to represent Worcester Park.  For the sake of those people I would like to let you know the following:

I have spoken to Cllr Fenwick twice since this posting to offer him a full right of reply. His response was that he did not want to do this as he did not want to rise to the bait. He said:
“Sometimes with things like this you just have to take it on the chin, especially when you are a publicly elected representative.” 
I should point out (again) that the video was made by the 'Stop the Incinerator' group and was already doing the rounds before I posted it here. If you just play the audio you are only hearing exactly what Cllr Fenwick said at that meeting. I suspect they made this into a video because they knew that few people would be bothered to just listen to the audio recording of the incinerator planning meeting by itself.

Anyone elected to public office should expect this level of scrutiny and these meetings are recorded and publicly available to ensure that the voting public can make themselves aware of who they are voting for and how those people are representing them. Decisions made by these people on our behalf affect all of us and such scrutiny, and even a level of parody are part of any healthy democracy.

People should not put themselves forward for such a position unless they are prepared to accept that. To his credit Cllr Fenwick recognizes that and has at no stage asked me to remove this video.

While I have declared it in other places and made it clear on the 'About The Blog' page, I will state here again that I am myself seeking election in May's Council elections. I will be standing for the Conservatives in Worcester Park and therefore will be in direct competition with Cllr Fenwick for a seat on the council. However this video make an interesting and entertaining piece of local news in its own right, and one which would be posted here regardless of the political circumstances.

I did not produce, commission or ask for this video to be made. I have not personally disparaged Cllr Fenwick. I have merely made available something that was already in the public domain that many people have appreciated seeing, and more to the point - hearing.


49 COMMENTS (Add Yours Now!):

Barbyk said...

Was hoping this blog was non political and independent..v disappointed. Get enough politics through the door, prefer to just have unbiased WP news please. Thank you

Barry said...

Excuse me while I reach for my sick bucket!!!

Notablogger said...

I was laughing very heartily at the very clever animation of this shambolic and illogically rambling speech.

Then I remembered that this man actually holds a position if political power, and I helped vote him in. That was the point at which I stopped laughing and started worrying.


Michael said...

Logic asks what is the cost in long term pollution: If the proposal went
ahead what is operational eco cost, how much CO2 emissions minus the
output of any power generated etc.

Vs

If it is not to go ahead
what is the eco cost of any alternative (landfill?) and any toxin
release/collection/clean up minus power generated from this.

Both will produce cancer inducing toxic waste bla bla
bla... affecting locals, its just a matter of who is affected and where.
Anyone against any proposal should state alternative proposals of whose
garden the waste should be processed next to instead of theirs.
shouting 'Not here' or 'Somewhere else' just doesn't solve the issue.

...of course neither really matter as the operational cost in pounds is the
deciding factor taken by politicians voting on their 'personal choice' (party line)
rather then the interests of the constituents they were voted in to
represent.

Tipsy & Tom said...

The Wife: What's this man on?
Me: The local Council...
The Wife: No, seriously, what's this man on....!!???

Andrew said...

If I was proposing the incinerator I think Cllr Fenwick would be the last person I'd want to speak up in its favour after this speech.

To say burning is an arguably better way to dispose of waste is one thing, but to say things like "we've been burning things since the 19th century and we must continue to keep burning things to keep going and move forward and produce energy" is nonsense and archaic! Burning anything to produce energy will be looked upon as such a crude and irresponsible method in another hundred or two hundred years! It's nuclear (fusion) all the way!

But we are running out of space for our refuse, no doubt about it, and there's only so much you can ship to china! There are ways of capturing exhaust co2 and other pollutants nowadays which could be employed to reduce the impact of an incinerator, and of course it would produce energy as a by product, how could it not??

But as someone else says, if we don't burn it, what else can we do?? (We're talking about non biodegradable and non recyclable waste of course) We can't simply bury it forever, what about pollution to the ground, is that not just as harmful as to the air?

guest said...

And the pollution from land fill is arguably worse as it produces more methane which is a far more potent greenhouse gas.


I think Michael has it right, it is a case of least worse solution and the gain sayers should be saying why their proposed solution is better.

Guest said...

Barbyk, perhaps you'll find this alternative web resource more suitable for your own non-political and independent agenda: http://sutton-libdems.org.uk/en/

Holly said...

Right, so an incinerator in Beddington is a great idea, but a nuclear reactor would have been an even better one... On reflection, compared to what's appeared here, Cllr. Fenwick's speech now seems ordinary, well researched and rather logical.

guest D said...

Andrew is saying that in the future he hopes we will have fusion reactors closer than 93 million miles away. At the moment the nearer one in Oxford consumes more power than it produces, but if we get fusion to work the only issue will be what to do with the pollutant it produces Helium.


You wouldn't put a fission reactor at place like Beddington as it requires large amounts of water to cool them, so they are placed on the coast or on the banks of large rivers like the Thames.

Andrew said...

Seems like it's a win win reading this article...http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-24903034

And to Holly, obviously I wasn't suggesting a nuclear power station in Beddington, not really sure where you got that from!!

Phil said...

This is supposed to be a non-political site, I used to love it before. Judging from the material, one assumes either a Tory councillor or one that wishes to stand next year is editing/publishing this website. Please keep to newsworthy items, not propaganda!

Jenny said...

Simon Densley - Worcester Park blogger, Conservative candidate for Worcester Park 2014 and wannabe X-Factor contestant (look him up on you tube!)

Simon says he sees himself primarily as someone interested in working to improve his local area, rather than as part of a political party’s machine. (Really???? And don't you live in Morden?)

Perhaps you should use your IT skills to serve the readers of this website and the community properly rather than your ego and subliminally publicise your candidature in 2014.

Esther said...

Totally agree. What an awful article and poor taste. How is this type of mocking beneficial to WP residents? Perhaps the time to to create that would be better spent with an intelligent response or alternative.

Dave M said...

Just watched You Tube, what a mug.

Barney said...

Cllrs Fenwick is a joke...there are plenty of good cllrs trying to make the borough better but he is not one of them.
He is way out of his depth and was only elected because of local tribal politics.
Remember when he was elected he was living on the Croydon edge of the Borough in Beddington so what did he know or care abt Worcester Park.

Barney said...

There are many things you can say abt Cllr Fenwick but being logical is not one of them...
Ever noticed his red nose or rosy cheeks..?

Barney said...

It's not knocking it is just pointing out what type of Cllr WP residents elected ....
You get what you wish for remember...

Esther said...

Barney - Perhaps you're Mr Densley in disguise? If you want to get elected perhaps concentrate on your policies and what YOU would do. You're clearly no better than any of them, maybe even worse.

Guest E said...

This site treats WP residents like we are idiots. 100% political propaganda.

Sanjeev said...

No mention of local conservative homophobic views or Cllr Bullock's belief that people shouldn't be allowed read their own religious texts.

Funny that!

Phil said...

It is true, there are many good local Councillors, conservative and Lib Dem. However, to use a community site to try to humiliate someone like this is nothing short of desperate mud slinging.

Barney said...

Yes, I am standing in 2014, what can I say.........that's politics!

Barney said...

I can assure you I am not Densley....
Why are you Esther so concerned about a bit of criticism of one of the local cllrs...
Especially one who is as inept and pointless as Fenwick...
I applaud Roger Roberts and Gordon-Bulloch..but Fenwick would be better off back in Beddington where he came from..
Let the voters over there decide whether his views on the incinerator bare scrutiny.

Barney said...

The Barney in the above message isn't the same as this Barney...a bit like I'm Spartacus really..usual toe rag tricks of the party who are the dirtiest tricksters around.
People in Sutton have been fooled by these power crazed lunatics for years and look what we have got...incoherent planning policies for a start that aren't strong enough to stand up to scrutiny by the planning inspectorate..then they blame that on everybody but them even though they have had 27 years to sort it out..
Central Road caused by the Lib Dems and bought to a standstill by them as well...
By the way I'm not standing ....
Barney1

Holly said...

So Andrew's comment and yours are both 93 million miles away from both Beddington and reality, which since you missed it, is actually exactly the point of my previous comment.
The reality, since you seem to have missed it, is that huge volumes of toxic waste will be pumped into the air supply, just 5 or 6 miles away from where Worcester Park's residents are breathing that same air supply - so a westerly wind would be very bad news.


Only the most exceptionally foolish would blindly welcome this with nonchalance and the apparent blind faith in the worst and most dangerous by-products being somehow responsibly be filtered out. It's transparently clear that this incinerator will be run as cheaply as possible and that means with the minimum possible filtering of pollutants.

Barney said...

Are you a numpty Sanjeev....?
What are the Conservative homophobic views...not quite as homophobic I bet as the religious texts that you are referring to.
All parties I am sure will put up straight and gay candidates at the next election and there sexual orientation should not be a reason for putting a x against their names on May 22..

Barney said...

In some respects you are right but let's face it he humiliated himself...

Holly said...

Actually, westerly wind would suit us - easterly winds will literally be the killer!

guest D said...

I think that it is fair for this Blog to show this, it is not as if they have doctored Cllr Fenwick's speech. I.m also sure that WPB would not deny him the right of reply. The issue of whether his lack of ability to speak coherently affects his ability as a councillor is different matter, many great orators have been lousy leaders (Cicero, Caius Julius Caeser, Randolph Churchill, Oswald Mosley, Adolf Hitler) spring to mind.



I would also supect that in the run up to next year's elections it will give equal air time to all the candidates to explain their position on pressing local issues.


If you like, blogs like this will enhance the poltical process as prospective councillors will have to defend their position as they had to do 50 years ago in public meetings rather than just post a manifesto through local doors and use tribal voting patterns.


It is when a politician has to defend their ideas you see how competent they are or whether they are just jumping on a populist band wagon to get elected.

Holly said...

As a WP resident, I hate being treated like an idiot.


I hate to be told that I shouldn't know about an incinerator being built just a few miles away, because the party who brought it about, i.e. the local Liberal Democrats, would rather us not know that they forced it through. - That surely would be 100% political propaganda?

Give democracy a chance said...

And what does Jenny do/intend to do for the community, other than encourage them to vote Lib Dem?

Jenny certainly seems to have gone to some lengths to research an opposition candidate. I wonder who would go to such lengths? Not Jenny as in Jennifer Campbell-Klomps by chance? [You know, Worcester Park's here today, gone tomorrow Lib-Dem Councillor?]

Give democracy a chance said...

I agree. The speech has merely been reproduced, as is. Are those so upset by this seriously suggesting that nobody should be able to know about it? Thankfully North Cheam isn't like North Korea [Although, by the state of Victoria House, it could easily be mistaken for an abandoned nuclear bunker in run down Pyongyang].

I get the strong impression that those outraged are those who are firmly committed to a particular political colour, who are frustrated by an inability to filter out information that they would rather not be divulged. Well, welcome to the internet age - where news can travel fast and unedited ... and we all get equal, fair and democratic access to it!

guest D said...

Check your map, Beddington is to the East of WP, so the prevailing Westerlies will blow the pollution to Croydon. Perhaps we should congratulate the council on knowing their geography?

Jenny said...

Sorry Simon, I'm not that Jenny or a Lib Dem, or conservative. I'm a WP resident who wants the best for the community and really couldn't give a hoot about the politics.

Simon, it looks like you have monopolised this site and the blog, who else are you besides Barney/Givedemocracyachance? Doesn't look like you are running a very democratic ship.

Look fwd to your views at future public meetings.

Andrew said...

I'm not sure why you inferred that I was suggesting building a power station in Beddington, the debate is about what to do with millions of tonnes of refuse when current landfills are obviously reaching capacity, hence the call for a different approach.

My sentence about nuclear fusion was referring to Mr Fenwicks strange arguments in favour of building one whereby he thinks the continuous burning of material is the solution to our energy crisis when in reality he couldn't be further from reality.

If the incinerator is such a terrible idea (despite the less than convincing stance that burning the refuse is so much worse than burying it somewhere in the long run) what would you propose? A landfill in Nonsuch Park maybe?

Give democracy a chance said...

Given that you "really couldn't give a hoot about politics", it's kind of strange that you have an interest in attending public meetings - wouldn't you say???
And by the way, I'm not Barney - or Simon. Yes, I know it's easier to claim it's all the same person disagreeing with you, rather than face up to the reality of your views being unpopular.

Jenny said...

And what are my unpopular views Simon? Interesting you interpret public meetings as party politics.

Give democracy a chance said...

Jenny, I'm still not Simon, but you are most definitely deluded in thinking everyone writing on here is the same person. Public meetings without local politics? Whatever did you think Councillors are elected for?
Perhaps you can tell us, since you "really couldn't give a hoot about politics", why you have taken such an interest in a candidate - apparently who you don't support.
And by the way, since you don't give a hoot, perhaps you can tell us how you know who the candidates are for the 2014 elections - I've certainly not seen them formally declared...

guest D said...

Surely under the representation of the peoples act, they won't be known until nominations close, 19 working days prior to the election?



Of course the major parties will have their prospective canditates in place by now, but until the nominations close the ballot papers aren't drawn up. Who knows what scandals might come up!

Jenny said...

Wow...Simon = Barney, Give Democracy a chance, Guest D and Holly.

One man trying to fool everyone and already starting on a dirty political campaign, just what we all needed - another lying, self furthering wannabe politician.

Go on, fill your boots.

Parkerilla said...

I haven't commented on this before although I'm concerned that the blog should post an attack ridiculing someone like this. It's WP blogger's blog and he can post what he likes but at the same time the great success of the blog as an important and well respected part of WP life means he has to be careful because what he posts may be taken as truth because of the blogs reputation. If you look at 2'34" in the video it plainly implies that Cllr Fenwick took a bribe to vote in favour of the incinerator which is a libel and I'm just wondering if WP blogger is happy having that on his blog.

guest D said...

Thanks for pointing that out, I hadn't noticed it. But have you considered that it is equally damaging to their campaign showing that it is just a morally bankrupt NIMBY campaign.

I went on to their web site http://www.stoptheincinerator.co.uk and it doesn't have any proposals as to how to deal with the mountains of waste produced by Sutton except I suppose to pay ever increasing amounts of Land Fill Tax.


Their only suggestion seems to be to raise £50,000 for a juidical review, if that was £50,000 to fund an enviromental study on the best solution I might support them.

Facts not opinions said...

In your haste to post an opinion, It looks like, you either haven't noticed the website's FAQs page - or ignored it.
Those interested in facts rather than opinion may wish to read the text beneath the sub-heading, "What are the alternatives?"

Do feel free to post a correction to your incorrect statements.

Andrew said...

The ''What are the alternatives'' section merely says that there are alternatives without specifying them at all.


So I think it's you who is incorrect.


We are obviously talking about non-recyclable waste here, it is given that recycling removes the need for landfill or an incinerator, but that isn't necessarily the issue at hand.

guest D said...

As you want.

The FAQ states

If the facilities were provided we could recycle or reuse over 90% of all our rubbish.


As the best fiqures in Europe are currently obtained by Germany at close to 70% and has been at that figure for over twenty years, I don't place any reliance on the FAQ, it is political propaganda. Oh by the way guess what Germany does with the remaining 30%, yes ERF as the Sutton site will.


To be fair though Sutton could improve their recycling by providing food waste recycling but the composting of that also leads to some greenhouse gases, a lot less than land fill but almost the same as incineration.

WorcesterParker said...

pretty sure you're densley though

samepersonhonest said...

or at least dense, one of the two

Alex said...

I'd suggest recent revelations about Sutton council mixing (separated) recyclable and non-recyclable waste (in purpose built, recyclable and non-recyclable council bins) and then re-mixing, and sending it, as one, to landfill has put rather a different spin on this.


As a resident who's embraced recycling from the early days, I feel conned by Sutton Council and it's claims of being green and responsible. [I even recall they went to questionable lengths (at our expense) of painting all the council vehicles green, just to show how truly committed to green issues they were. How laughable that PR swindle has proven to be!]


If the building of this incinerator has been agreed on the basis of including our recyclable waste in the landfill statistics equation (and current practices suggest it would have to have been), I can very well understand why more responsible councillors were so hesitant to back this irresponsible agenda.

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