17.10.2001 - Reply to Chief Executive Rodney Stone's letter of 10 October, including further questions

37 Church Road
Royal Tunbridge Wells

e-mail: telephonehouse@cs.com
internet: http://uk.geocities.com/telephonehouse

Rodney Stone Esq
The Chief Executive
Tunbridge Wells Borough Council
Town Hall TN1 1RS

17 October2001

Dear Mr Stone

Telephone House Development

Thank you for your letter of 10th October 2001.

We are pleased to note that you have taken steps to see what lessons can be learnt from this matter. We would hope this is a separate enquiry to that being conducted by Mr Haynes who would be at an obvious disadvantage if he started, with your presumption, rather than an open mind, that Council officers have done their professional duty and are beyond reproach.

You now assert that we have an entirely fixed attitude; that we think it is entirely the fault of Council officers, having done their professional duty; that we are entirely entitled to the view which you assume we have adopted; and that we are being extremely unfair. Your comments are wrong and misplaced.

The consequences of Council officers’ actions are apparent to both Councillors and residents including our Association. However, until we have answers to our questions and know the reasons and facts we do not wish to make a judgment as to whether officers acted professionally and sensibly. We would say however that the numerous excuses you have made in your desire for secrecy makes us concerned that there may be something you may wish to hide.

As an example of the above we refer you to Item 8 of the annex of our letter of 6th June 2001. Mr Eveleigh obviously gave his advice deliberately. Despite the consequences contained in the Inspector’s report, you may think that Mr Eveleigh acted correctly and professionally in advising the Western Area Planning Committee as he did. We surely are entitled to receive answers so that we can make up our own minds.

Will you please address yourself to replying to our questions. To judge from earlier correspondence most of the answers must have been on your desk by July.

In addition will you kindly let us have answers to the following questions:

  1. What are the steps you have taken to see what lessons can be learnt from this episode?
  2. Do you consider that an independent enquiry would be of help?
  3. To whom do you think the Appeal Inspector was referring when he used the expression "unreasonable behaviour"?
  4. To whom, if anyone, are you answerable for your actions and conduct?

We look forward to receiving your detailed answers please.

Yours sincerely
Annemarie Topliss
for the Committee of
The Telephone House Neighbours Association

2001 - The uneasy questions to the Chief Executive Rodney Stone and other senior officers of TWBC
2003 - the questions are still unanswered - they are as intriguing as in 2001.
What went wrong with the Telephone House Planning Applications ?

During summer/autumn 2001, after the Public Inquiry - The attitude of Tunbridge Wells Borough Council's
Chief Executive and Director of Operational Services towards Residents

The Telephone House Neighbours Association, Tunbridge Wells
The aims are to heighten peoples' awareness and concern for the high-density development on Telephone House site, Church Road / York Road, Tunbridge Wells, Kent, TN1.