Onwards into battle men, I am right behind you

The Member of Parliament for Rochford and Southend East has made it known that he now believes the Council’s plans for the sea defences in Shoebury should be dropped. The Southend Echo headline in today’s edition says: Now Shoebury’s MP says seawall should be axed

I wonder what former Conservative councillors Roger Hadley and Tony Cox will make of this? They backed the Council’s plans, and this brave decision certainly had a big impact on the elections they fought. It could be argued that they were unseated because they backed the Council’s plans for a seawall. Now seeing this decision rubbished by James Duddridge surely rubs salt into the wounds.

It cannot be encouraging to see your troops sent into battle, annihilated, then announce the battle was fought in vain.

For the record I backed the Council’s plan, as did most Conservative, Labour and Liberal Democrat councillors. We need to improve sea defences, and the Council’s plan looked most cost effective. However, there are a number of questions that need answering and a review does make sense. What I cannot imagine is a review deciding not to make any improvements to Shoebury’s sea defences.

Of course, this is not really an argument about sea defences at all – it is the fear of new housing on a green area. I do not think that whatever plan is approved necessarily means that housing must automatically follow, and if new homes are to be built then the Council must fulfil its obligations in respect of social housing.

Anyway, Tony and Roger must feel deep satisfaction in sticking to their principles, and seeing their hapless Parliamentary representative make their selfless sacrifice look totally unwarranted.

I had to laugh at this quote from hapless James: I have gone from a 5,000 majority to an 11,000 majority by working hard for my 21,000 constituents.

There are over 71,000 voters in Rochford and Southend East, plus thousands who cannot vote or who are not registered. James is way short of the mark in estimating the number of constituents. Doh!

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