OUR poor reporters know better than most that council meetings are not always the most high-octane events.

So it’s reassuring to know that councillors feel exactly the same.

In a survey of Oxfordshire county councillors, the majority felt that council meetings were not a useful way to do business.

Councillors also tactfully suggested that officers’ reports were “useful but too long”, and could be written in “plainer English”.

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In a wonderful example, the very same survey contained a recommendation to councillors to “consider and endorse the direction of travel of the review”.

On behalf of our readers, we would like to endorse the direction of travel towards making sense.

The Insider came across one of Nicola Blackwood’s leaflet, in which she outlines her opposition to the proposed £100m redevelopment of Botley’s West Way shopping centre.

Oddly enough, in small print at the bottom of the leaflet it reads “Promoted by Matthew Barber”, who is her campaign manager.

The same Matthew Barber and leader of the Vale of White Horse District Council who has steadfastly backed the scheme from the get-go.

Oxford Mail:

  • Alex Hollingsworth

POOR old Alex Hollingsworth was made to go through pictures of the Westgate designs one by one with council officers while everyone watched on Tuesday.

The officers had insisted it was the only way the city councillor for Carfax could guarantee the improvements to the surrounding area he wanted. 

Mr Hollingsworth said he was worried about trying everyone’s patience, but west area planning committee chairman Oscar Van Nooijen said there was plenty of time.

It is at least reassuring to know they had no plans to rush it through, especially as the development is worth £400m...

Oxford Mail: Ian Hudspeth

Oxfordshire County Council leader Ian Hudspeth informed all his Twitter followers yesterday that he was jetting off to New York for Thanksgiving and Black Friday. 

Mr Hudspeth will be braving chilly conditions after reports the East Coast could be blasted by more heavy snowfall. 

He should be fine. After all, it’s not the first time he’s walked into a storm. 

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