February 3 2014.

Statement from Campaign to Save Cradle Hill from Closure:

We regard the manner in which Cllr. Sam Adeniji caved in at the Cabinet meeting on January the 28th, and declared that ESCC had met the demands made by closing Cradle Hill for 4 days out of 7, as a betrayal of what the 10,460 signatories believed they were petitioning for. The petition did not ask for reduced opening times, which is how Adeniji chose to reword it under Tory party pressure. As other speakers observed, none could recall such a massive public response to such an issue, demonstrating that the Council had woefully underestimated Seaford residents' wish to retain our local tip.

We shall have to consider how best to take this forward, but certainly do not intend to be emotionally blackmailed by speeches such as the disgraceful one in which the ESCC Vice-Chairman, Cllr Michael Ensor, insulted Seafordians. That a County Councillor should have gratuitously denigrated Seafordians by implying we are all lazy and selfish, referring to us driving to the tip "in their lovely cars" etc, is unacceptable. And since it entirely missed the fact that the Council's own proposal paper states that savings needing to be made in the household waste sites budget will have to come from that budget - not the social services budget - the fairness of the Cabinet Chairman, Cllr Glazier, in not immediately upbraiding him, (as he did when any other speaker seemed likely to stray off topic), is obviously called into question.

The steering group is continuing to work with County Councillors to challenge both the decision made in Cabinet last Tuesday and the grounds on which Cllr. Adeniji's withdrawal of the Petition was ruled able to permit the Cabinet to bring forward discussion of the topic from the next full Council meeting, at which they would undoubtedly have faced an embarrassing defeat.

Cllr. Carolyn Lambert will be investigating the legality of how Seaford's massive 10,460-signature petition was handled, given that the decision to withdraw it was taken by one person without any consultation. Moreover, Cllr. Adeniji's online petition attracted 1,613 (15%) of the total of 10,460 signatures received by the Council, so 8,847 (85%) signatures were submitted in writing and Cllr. Adeniji clearly had no right to assume "ownership" of them.

Cllr. Lambert has also tabled a Notice of Motion before Lewes District Council regarding its green waste collection, of which much has been made by both ESCC Cabinet Leader Keith Glazier and Sam Adeniji. Both LDC's Deputy Leader and Lead Member for Waste have already indicated that the District has no intention of advancing its waste collection plans, still less of introducing kerbside green waste bins immediately as a direct response to any decision to close Cradle Hill partially or fully.

The fight will go on!

Bob Downing
Campaign Coordinator


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