Who would give Rye the best deal. Rother District Council of the old Rye Borough Council?
No contest, Rye was far better served by the Borough and would be again if the system was reinstated. These views are shared by more and more of Rye’s councillors and other ‘movers and shakers’ who respect the town and the people who live here.
The example in the opposite column highlights the difference. In Borough days, before 1973, there would have been no phoning around different departments to get the sheep out of the river. One call to Rye Town Hall and the animals would have been removed in an hour. That was the same with every small problem around the town, there were men on hand to do the job, whether it was a loose paving stone, rubbish left in the street or untidy verges, all would get swift action from a work-force that numbered only eight full time men and five full time office staff. All took pride in their job and all came from Rye. Their tools and equipment were kept in the Council Yard at Cyprus Place.
The other great difference was the cost. There were no quangos or power groups, no officials with fancy names propped up by echelons of secretaries and blue collar staff. Rye’s budget was always thrifty but somehow the town was always tidy and clean. There were even flowers in the Gungarden! The parks and gardens, including the Cemetery were maintained in excellent order and the river banks were kept in trim.
What has Rother done for Rye in the 30 years they have been in charge? Contributed a few bob towards a swimming pool. They could have built more than 100 swimming pools with the money that has been wasted, and continues to be wasted, on the De La Warr Pavilion.
Now Rother District Council, who are sidetracked by party politics and controlled by Bexhill members, want Rye people to put their hands in their pockets and shell out extortionate council rates to prop up their ever expanding bureaucracy.
Our two District Councillors Sam Souster and Granville Bantick do their best but they are outvoted every time. It might be a better option if they both resigned and Rye refused to return Councillors to the one sided, unfair set up.
Let Rye Council hold a referendum and see how Rye people really feel. A 90% Yes to having the Borough system restored could be plonked on the door of the Prime Minister. Then we would find out if true democracy was really a part of his remit.
Rye enjoyed 900 years of self rule before control of its own destiny was stolen away. The time has come to claim it back.
“Rye’s New” October 2004
All articles, photographs, films and drawings on this web site are World Copyright Protected. No reproduction for publication without prior arrangement. © World Copyright 20017 Cinque Ports Magazines Rye Ltd., Guinea Hall Lodge Sellindge TN25 6EG