YOU may have heard about a new town being built north of Fareham called Welborne.
I have seen a Freedom of Information request which estimates the infrastructure for the new town will cost around £300m.
Some will disagree with that figure, especially when one considers a new secondary school could cost over £60m and dual carriageways cost at least £20m per mile, the £300m total package for infrastructure could be labelled elasticity economics.
The same Freedom of Information request shows £982,000 has been spent so far. Although not funded directly by the taxpayer, let us not forget the money government agencies contribute towards local authorities comes from general taxation — a source most of us make a large donation towards.
Being naturally suspicious, I believe that the reason the council have not engaged the public in a full and open debate on Welborne may be down to the fact that funding is coming from external sources. Therefore it believes there is no justification in a consultation with residents.
With so much money already spent, Welborne is a force with so much energy it could be comparable to a force of nature, a natural phenomenon that will take its course come what may.
In my mind, the residents of Fareham were denied any opportunity in the early stages of this development to have their voice heard.
I believe that Fareham Borough Council’s view is that Welborne will be built whatever and the public record is clear on that.
It is only now when the impetus of the policy is taking shape and the strategy is moving forward, that Fareham Borough Council holds out a hand of consultation.