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Grantham Journal letter: Where were our councillors?

Councillor Ray Wootten EMN-160815-093122001
Councillor Ray Wootten EMN-160815-093122001

I’ve written several times before about the close connection between the trashing of our precious NHS and decades of Tory misrule (although the Blair government didn’t trade under the Tory logo, Blair was, according to Thatcher, the Tories’ finest achievement).

Perhaps my point was well illustrated by a report in last week’s Journal.

Apparently Councillor Ray Wootten tried to have SKDC approve a motion that the downgrading of Grantham’s A&E is “completely unacceptable”. It was reported that 24 councillors supported his motion, and three abstained.

Abstained? Really? What sort of councillor, supposedly acting in the best interests of the local community, when asked if scrapping essential emergency services is “completely unacceptable” abstains from voting? What part of that question confuses them?

But there are 56 SKDC councillors. That means that most, almost thirty of them, didn’t even bother to turn up for the debate – let alone support Mr Wootten’s excellent motion,

No matter that thousands of us march to support our hospital, sometimes in the pouring rain; no matter that some fine campaigners take the protest to London, at their own expense - all of which proves how much this issue matters to local people.

Over half SKDC’s Tory councillors are so indifferent about the future of our emergency services they can’t even stir themselves to do the job we pay them to do. That’s how much our NHS in general, and our A&E in particular, matter to these people.

Mr Wootten is a Tory. As I’ve said in the past, I know not all Tories are bad people because my parents were Tory supporters, and they were good, honest, salt-of-the earth folk. But many Tory supporters, perhaps most, are seriously misguided – as my parents were. Those high Tories that run our lives – the powerful ones – don’t give a toss about we the people; they never have and they never will, and the absence of their lackeys from Mr Wootten’s debate proves it in spades.

There is a direct correlation between the killing-off of our A&E services and the overwhelming majority of Tory politicians in government. Therefore it stands to reason that voters should simply stop voting Tory. These people have to be removed from positions of power. At the moment, Labour, under Jeremy Corbyn, is the best alternative. But a very good place to start is simply to stop voting Tory.

I respect Mr Wootten’s effort to have SKDC make a stand. Well done him. But if he or any other principled Tory really wants to make a statement I suggest resigning from the Conservative party over the issue.

Perhaps it’s a bit much to expect Mr Wootten to support Jeremy Corbyn, but he could stand in the May elections as an Independent, make saving our hospital a campaign policy and give voters the chance to send a strong message to our Tory rulers: their continued trashing of our NHS is indeed “completely unacceptable”.

John Andrews

Marratts Lane,

Great Gonerby

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