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Coun Mark Warters believes cash should pay for village road reconstruction
Osbaldwick Independent councillor Mark Warters claims he was accused by senior Labour councillor Dave Merrett at a planning meeting of being “bitter and twisted” after protesting that his ward would not get any of the money raised through the sale of land at Osbaldwick for the 540-home model village development.
He claimed that Coun Merrett and other councillors did not fully grasp the concept of local councillors representing their local area but said he would continue to do this regardless of what insults were hurled his way.
Coun Warters said he particularly believed that some of the money should pay for the reconstruction of the main road in the village, which he said had been badly damaged by heavy traffic travelling to and from the site.
He took a photograph of village youngster Rowan Wenyon in a pothole to prove the problem.
But Coun Merrett said he actually said that if Coun Warters “chose to continue to play the role of a ‘Mr Bitter & Twisted from Osbaldwick’ in opposing Derwenthorpe” – particularly when he now had no hope of stopping it coming to fruition – it was going to potentially undermine attempts to integrate its residents into the wider Osbaldwick community and vice versa.
Coun Merrett said: “And are the new residents going to feel able to approach him as their councillor?
“It is his legal duty to represent all of them, and my fear is that that won’t happen if he continues to adopt his present stance.
“I was therefore asking him to reconsider his approach now at this critical point before the new residents move in.”
He said Coun Warters was perfectly entitled to make his ward’s case for capital schemes “in the appropriate place,” but the planning committee had no say or role in that, as he well knew.
Local resident Sophie Wenyon, who agreed for her son Rowan, nine, to pose in the pothole for Coun Warters to illustrate the problems, said the road had been “absolutely horrendous” since Derwenthorpe construction work started.