Grantham Journal Column: ‘There ain’t no sense sittin’ on a fence’

Peter Clawson.
Peter Clawson.
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One of the things I like best about our local MP Nick Boles, is that he never fails to provide usable copy for the media – good, bad, but never indifferent.

His latest Journal column reminds me of words from an old song my mum used to play on a pub piano at the Eight Bells in Caythorpe: ‘There ain’t no sense, sittin’ on a fence, all by yourself’.

In one breath, he tells us he has never taken a public position on any local planning application. In the next, he offers apparently conflicting views on the values of solar power.

As far as I can tell, Nick believes solar powered windmills are necessary, but not at the expense of quality farmland. So where does that leave us? Maybe he would like to tell us where, in the most fertile county in the land, we are going to find large enough infertile agricultural areas to meet such energy-producing demands?

Perhaps on the eyesores snapped up and sat on by developers awaiting lucrative rising values to bring in excess profits? Not enough time, I think, plus the fact that most of them are overlooked and unusable.

Or around the controversial ‘once and future neverland’ we know as our southern bypass? No. Too many ‘ifs’ and ‘buts’ and new homes.

Alternatively, Nick Boles tells us he believes people would welcome solar panels on supermarket or factory roofs, but I bet they would prefer them to be fitted on their own homes, making bills even cheaper.

Speaking of fantasies, our MP reckons Government guidance will be of great help to local planners, but on the evidence of other such advice, they would probably have more success walking a tightrope between skyscrapers in America.