The Hereford Times (April 22) highlights Carmelo Garcia’s work as our local democracy reporter.

He acknowledged the greater openness of our coalition council.

I believe this has played a part in the way Herefordshire is working together in this time of world crisis.

The new chief executive will be in place in May. Herefordshire has great potential for change in so many ways.

Carmelo’s departure coming at this time has highlighted for me something behind the new term ‘languishing’, coined to describe the general unease – I believe people need to have a voice to play an effective part in their communities.

Carmelo’s article on the St Nicholas planning decision unsettled me.


Farewell, my watch on local democracy in Herefordshire is over

Dismay over decision to demolish rectory

We need more say locally to be in charge of planning for this county.

I am distressed knowing that yet another unique building is signed away.

I do not know what lies behind the decision or the conditions to reduce the impact of the destruction on the locality – if, indeed, they could be enforced.

I do know government policy presently makes it more profitable to destroy a building and build new and does little to promote quality and vision.

I question whether the local community has been consulted about the disruption and pollution of demolition or what chance was given for those who might be interested in conserving.

I would hope we could have public awareness of wider possibilities and that the diocese could have a more creative solution than just the added value of another building plot.

Herefordshire has lost too many priceless buildings and their interiors.

The country is waking up to the danger of narrow interests and ‘business as usual’.

Can we stop this rush to “develop” when we should be getting the basics right and building a sustainable future for all?

Barbara Ferris


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