To Keith McGurk, East Region Director Veolia
Your flyer reached some of us in the Long Leys community over the past two days, but not others. Perhaps something to do with the out of date maps you use, that fail to show some of the closest neighbours to your Long Leys Road site here in Lincoln.
You claim to consider consultation to be important; you know the Council does – you were criticised harshly for lack of consultation at the Planning meeting in February, when your original application was refused. Yet in your company’s strategic planning document, we read:
“Community relations will be the key to success. Industry must
strive to engage with local communities…”
Do you, or any of your colleagues, recognise this claim? We’ve not seen evidence of that here. Consultation should be a two way process, that means you should listen to us, not just dictate your plans.
This flyer has absolutely nothing to do with ‘consultation’ – it is simply a statement of your intentions, telling us how you will make so many things better, and bring so many benefits… but only to your business. We still see no reason to change our conviction that success for you is disaster for our community. A few comments follow, then a direct challenge.
You talk of your hours of operation. If your plans are as you state, why did you seek a 24/7 licence? This difference has caused much concern and lack of trust. Your flyer implies we’ve misunderstood something, whilst in fact it’s you who are being ingenuous.
Then your ‘Open Day’. Once again (you’ll remember the Lincoln Grandstand event), you fail to take into account that many of the residents who may wish to speak with you are working people, unable to schedule their lives to visit your plant between 11am and 3pm on a working day. Though why would they want to anyway? What you have there today bears little resemblance to what you want to create. And then you talk of a ‘limited number’ of visitors at any one time! Are you frightened to meet the people who live in the community which would be significantly damaged if your plans were allowed to proceed? If the idea of the ‘Open Day’ is to provide an opportunity for people to speak to you, then do it honestly and have the courage to do so in a way that anyone who is interested can attend and speak.
Here then is the direct challenge. You were invited to attend a public meeting in November last year, and refused. After criticism for failure to engage with us, you put on the Grandstand event, and sent noone capable of answering our questions. And until this week, you have signally failed to even contact your closest neighbours. It’s time now to put this right.
We at the StopVeolia Action Group challenge you now to organise a public meeting, capable of accommodating at least 200 people, and to do this within the next two weeks. Commit to this, and we will undertake the publicity and deliver your audience. If you need help in finding a suitable venue, we’ll help with that too. But fail to meet with us in this way, then we will be left with no option but to draw our own conclusions from your refusal.
For StopVeolia Action Group