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Local Consultation Sham

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FivewaysGrover
Villager

FivewaysGrover
Local Consultation Sham
15th May 2013 at 12:23PM
MAELR Junction 6 Option Consultation Feedback meeting 14th May 2013 – Hazel Grove

After the end of a stormy local liaison forum meeting at Hazel Grove Civic Hall I am none the wiser as to who has decided that Option 1 is the preferred junction arrangement for the Macclesfield Road Manchester Airport Relief Road junction – whether it was 40% of the ill-informed public who responded to an unrepresentative survey, or Stockport Council Executive, or the SEMMMS MAELR project team. I know it was not any of the local residents who will be directly affected by the decision in the Fiveways area of Hazel Grove.

I was given to understand that, as local residents directly affected by the junction option choice, our views at the Local Liaison Group forum in January would considerably influence the project team as to which would be the preferred junction option. We attended the Forum feedback meeting on 14th May at Hazel Grove Civic Hall to be told that the ‘emerging’ preference was for Option 1. This appeared to be because 40% of those who responded to the questionnaire issued in January had chosen this as their preferred option. This was 40% of all the people who responded to the questionnaire. I know 8,737 people returned the questionnaire. I have no idea where they live. I know the smallest proportion of them live anywhere near Junction 6 in Hazel Grove and the smallest percentage of these people would of course be affected by the junction option choice for Macclesfield Road. The unanimous view of the people attending the Local Liaison group with respect to this junction was that we were all vehemently opposed to Option 1. I know this because we held a public show of hands. To re-iterate: This was the clear view of all the people who live locally to this junction.

In our view, with intimate local knowledge, Option 1 will cause traffic gridlock at the Fiveways junction, which lies only 225m to the North of the proposed junction. Any queuing back from the new junction will make it impossible for Dean Lane traffic to exit onto Macclesfield road in either direction. The clear and UNANIMOUS view of all local people at the local liaison forum meeting was that Option 2, incorporating an underpass to Macclesfield Road and slip road access and egress, was by far the best option for the Fiveways area.

Having expressed our clear and unanimous view we were informed that we have three opportunities to make our views known to those empowered with making the final decision between Option 1 (perhaps incorrectly referred to as the ‘emerging’ preferred option – because Option 1 was the only option on the table at the 14th May meeting) and the recently disappeared Option 2. Our first opportunity is to contact our local Councillor and express our opinions directly. This was a rather frustrating response given that no local councillors were sufficiently motivated to attend either of the 2 forum meetings to date, and given that presumably they would rely on the report of the project team on the preferred choice – a report which has so clearly ignored the local feedback they received. Indeed the Project Director was unclear on what influence our local councillors would have – or indeed why we should not be able to rely on his report to adequately reflect our local views which should then, in turn, be represented adequately to those democratically elected to make such decisions.

Our second opportunity is to feedback into stage 2 of the formal consultation process running in June and July. This presumably would confirm Option 1 as the preferred choice under the same criteria as the first consultation period and would therefore be a further expression of Option 1 – which NOBODY in the Local Liaison Forum supports. Given that the envisaged timetable is for a September Planning application there presumably is no time incorporated for further consideration of Option 2.

Our final opportunity is to object to the Planning Application once it was submitted.
I find it absolutely incredible that the only formal way we have to express our objection to Option 1 is to object to planning permission, probably in 2014, when the project team know of local residents’ UNANIMOUS objection to Option 1 now, and knew it in January 2013, and that they apparently have no real concerns about any potential delay to the planning process in 2014.
I can only draw one conclusion from the process so far: The Local Liaison Forum Group consultations offering of 2 options for consideration has been a complete sham. Option 2 was painted by the Project Team as the greater evil in the questionnaire issued in January. 40% of those who responded chose what they thought appeared to be the lesser of 2 evils and chose it with limited local knowledge of traffic problems in the area. The unanimous view of all local residents has been belittled and ignored in the Phase 1 Consultation feedback document – which was not presented or available for reference at the 14th May meeting. The Project Director came into the meeting ill prepared and failed to anticipate the objections clearly made in the January consultation, or for the strength of feeling of all residents present. Consequently he was unable to deliver his prepared presentation on the clearly ill informed decision to represent Option 1 as an ‘emerging’ preferred option.

This has been an abject lesson in how local consultation and democracy has been completely ineffective and has shown to be a total sham. Please make it known to all those concerned in the decision making process that the local people of Hazel Grove, and the Fiveways area in particular, feel that they have been ignored and failed by this pointless and misleading consultation process and that we shall continue to express our disgust with the process once the quality of life has been destroyed in the south of Hazel Grove by the traffic chaos that will ensue with the adoption of Option 1.

The interest taken by democratically elected representatives in influencing the Option chosen will be noted and remembered.

I have written to our 3 local councillors, our MP and to the SEMMMS project team. I recommend you do the same.
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vulcanman
Townsperson

vulcanman
Re: Local Consultation Sham
15th May 2013 at 2:35PM
Democracy in action. No typical sham from Stockport.
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guest
Drifter
Re: Local Consultation Sham
15th May 2013 at 3:21PM
Hi   

Thankyou for posting this

I suggest you contact Jim Mcmahon and have a meeting directly with him as i have have done twice in the past

his email adress is jim.mcmahon@stockport.gov.uk

He has said in the past he will meet and discuss with all effected residents
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glenandem
Citizen

glenandem
Re: Local Consultation Sham
15th May 2013 at 7:23PM
I've had a meeting with jim McMahon and I can tell you he listens and that's as far as it goes!
Don't waste your time, he's happy to meet you show you plans and try to tell you it will be great but he won't and I take it can't do much anyway!
Surprising no cllrs there especially a certain one who's really pushing it and feels he represents most of the grove but as you say doesn't turn up!!
That's not very decent of him or any others for that matter, maybe they was hiding in the background?
We all need to accept that these surveys, questions and oppinions asked about these junctions are just going through the motions and they've already made they're mind up, face it were all doomed lol
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vulcanman
Townsperson

vulcanman
Re: Local Consultation Sham
15th May 2013 at 11:01PM
Yes, where is Boss Hogg?
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Goggins
Re: Local Consultation Sham
16th May 2013 at 6:45AM
You seem to be confusing consultation with democracy, and confusing both with getting your own way.
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glenandem
Citizen

glenandem
Re: Local Consultation Sham
16th May 2013 at 3:02PM
Democracy?
That doesn't exist in Stockport does it?
I thought it was that lot at the town hall who made decisions based on twisted surveys and what helps themselves abit like the case if the missing 5 mill and no one got sacked except innocent hardworking people who lost they're job in way of cutbacks but sue Derbyshire who really is the top of the line and should have known what was going on kept her job!
It's not about having it your way it's about having a choice and listening to the locals who bother to turn up at these meetings when local concerned cllrs don't!!
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FivewaysGrover
Villager

FivewaysGrover
Re: Local Consultation Sham
16th May 2013 at 3:56PM
It's not me that's confused. It's the MAELR project team who appear to be totally confused as to the purpose of the local liaison forum groups - and have deliberately obscured the decision making process for selecting between Option 1 and Option 2.
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Damien
Villager

Damien
Re: Local Consultation Sham
16th May 2013 at 3:59PM
Damn when did Stockport become part of North Korea? Nobody informed me of this new development. All hail supreme leader Kim Jong-un!

Get real Glen you are not the centre of the world. So you bought a house near the proposed bypass route, sucks to be you. It has been known about for as long as I can remember so you have nobody to blame but your self.

Democracy does actually exist in Stockport, since you are able to vote for your desired councillors and member of parliament. Have you voting for a candidate that is against the relief road? Have you thought about standing your self to fight the relief road? Well that is democracy right there! The fact you have these basic freedoms means you live in a democracy, I would like to see you try any of that in North Korea or China.

And since democracy is such a big issue for you, you are aware that about 75% of respondents to the survey about the relief road were IN-FAVOUR of it right? Maybe that is not really democracy? Maybe you belief true democracy is if a single NIMBY complains then everything is scraped?


One last thing, since the councils financials, particularly regarding this road, are an even bigger issue for you, you will be refusing any compensation offered to you because of this road? Since that will only inflate the cost of the road even further wouldn't it?
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glenandem
Citizen

glenandem
Re: Local Consultation Sham
16th May 2013 at 6:49PM
Haha u call this a democracy than have a go at me for having a speech and oppinion?
Firstly I've not said one thing about the "airport relief rd" being built in my back yard on this post so don't attack me on that u silly sausage!
I was saying its amazing how the so called cllrs who represent our area and are pushing for this road wasnt even at the local people's meeting so they could speak to the people who live in the area and listen to what they have to say, obviously there's something wrong if this meeting that went on had so many hands up not happy about the proposed route?
As regards the survey it's been said that the council used 75% for it as the people who didn't say no to it as they didn't have a choice question, when I filled mine out I didn't see anywhere that said I could tick I was against it?
As regards compo, too right I'm gonna claim some, my property could go down in value so why not, I've lived here a fair few years and the route has changed since I moved in and it comes closer to me now.
It's the wasting of money like the 5 million and even today in the Stockport express I read about a deity chief in the townhall being paid nearly £400k last year and Stockport council has the highest paid people on over £100k than any other council in the greater manchester, just absolutely nuts when kids centres, old people's care centres and genuine working folk at the town hall and council are being laid off!
As far as I'm personally concerned though, if it goes ahead it happens and ill get a nice little payout and the road won't affect me too much so I'll be happy!!!
Please don't get this into an argument about me trying to be against the bypass or claiming compo as that's not what the topic about and neither have I stated up untill now when you mentioned it!
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