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Friday, May 12, 2006 

Anne's mysterious absences

Amme: woman of inaction strikes againSurrey Ad - Brickworks plan rejected: Plans to build 170 homes on the contaminated Cranleigh Brick & Tile Works site have been thrown out. On Wednesday, Waverley Borough Council’s joint planning management committee made the decision, by an overwhelming majority, after nearly seven hours of presentations, questions and debate, which were spread over two meetings... It was clear they were unconvinced that the enabling housing development was the only option for resolving the pollution issue. Earlier, former Guildford MP Sue Doughty, speaking on behalf of the Cranleigh Brickworks Action Group (C-BAG), referred to a letter from housing minister, Yvette Cooper, which pointed out that while building on brownfield sites was desirable, Government policies "do not give an open invitation to new development, whatever it is and wherever it is".

There's another article in the Cranleigh edition that didn't make it online ('Campaigners' joy at decision'), and I've included a partial scan of it above. You should be able to spot the amendment that I've made.

Regular readers of this blog may recall this entry from December...

They seek her here, they seek her there: On the evening of Dec 14 2005, a major local action group (CBAG) held a large public meeting and invited Anne as the MP. She declined, opting to send her researcher (not a Tory councillor, but her researcher). Former MP Sue Doughty was invited instead. The meeting and its outcome was deemed worthy of a front page article in the local newspaper. Nothing in the record at Hansard suggests that Parliamentary matters kept Amme away on this date, and the House closed fairly early that day.

Anne Milton didn't turn up to this most recent (and most crucial) meeting, either... so it surprised no-one when C-BAG chose our former MP Sue Doughty as their spokesperson, "giving (their) profile a huge increase in focus, national context and gravitas."

This single voluntary action by non-partisan action group cannot have escaped the attention of local Tories... and neither can the wider pattern of neglect and ineptitude.

Today, I wanted to post a round-up of the year that has passed since Amme became our MP, but - in an effort to be fair - I'll give the shouty crowd (i.e. the two Tory activists that pose as dozens of 'independent' supporters) an opportunity to answer an important question first...

Again, Anne Milton has seen fit to dodge another crucial local meeting, and again, there is no record of urgent Parliamentary matters that would justify her absence.

On the afternoon of May 10th, the day of the C-BAG meeting, there were three Divisions in the Commons on the Police and Justice Bill). Many Tory MPs voted. So many, in fact, that one can reasonably suspect that - at the very least - a two-line whip applied to these Divisions. But Anne didn't vote in any of them.

Now, Anne could have excused herself from the C-BAG meeting using the whip/vote as an excuse, but didn't.

Given her narrow margin, she could even have excused herself from the whip/vote using a Major Constituency Engagement as an excuse... but didn't.

She could even have managed to vote *and* make it back to Cranleigh in time for the meeting, but that would be silly. After all, she then would have to drive all the way home to Reigate afterwards, and that can really tucker a girl out.

Anne Milton had a number of options open to her, but instead chose to dodge both these obligations.

OK, Milton supporters Dennis and Mike... are you ready for your question? Here it comes...

Where was she? What WAS she doing?

(Hell, I know the new Foreign Secretary isn't quite up to scratch, but I'm reasonably certain that Amme wasn't unexpectedly called away on a mercy mission to Afghanistan.)

UPDATE (19th May): Not a word in Amme's defence, then? Tch.


I love the way they say "current MP". Seems even the press have lost faith that she'll hold the seat next time round, but then again, is that surprising?

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    Hi. I'm Tim. I live in Guildford. I've built a few political weblogs here and there. If you're wondering why I decided to start this particular blog, click here.


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