Feedback to Roger Mathew

Here is the feedback on the Milton Abbot peace window.

From: "Susan Hunting" 
To: "Roger Mathew"
Subject: Milton Abbot Peace Windw
Date: Mon, 28 Apr 2003 14:34:50 +0100

> I would like to say that I, as a parent of two children at Milton Abbot = 
> School, am delighted that the Planning Committee finally saw sense and = 
> agreed to grant permission for the installation of this beautiful = 
> window.  It will greatly enhance the school, will be able to be seen by = 
> the local community and will help the children's education by giving = 
> them chance to think about and discuss conflict and the destruction of = 
> our environment. 
> As an employee of a Local Authority for the past 23 years (not West = 
> Devon, I might add), I think it is time that those in positions of power 
> = 
> stopped being quite so "jobsworth" and thought a little more about what = 
> the local community (who, of course, elected these people onto the = 
> Council in the first place) want for their area.  Yes, the Planning = 
> Committee did come in for a lot of "flak" and deservedly so.  Whilst I = 
> accept that "rules are rules", each case should be viewed on its merits, 
> = > so constantly comparing it to the installation of 
a Coca Cola logo is = 
> totally irrelevant.  This window will enhance the building.  I don't = 
> recall there being nearly so much opposition when it was decided to = 
> build a modern extension at the rear of this listed building.  May I say 
> = > that those of us who are involved with the school would never agree to = 
> any alterations that would damage such a beautiful building, which is = 
> valued by parents and pupils alike. 
> A lot of time and effort has been spent by the staff, particularly the = 
> Head Teacher, Peter Jones, parents and children in raising money for = 
> this project and I for one will be there cheering loudly when the window 
> = > is finally unveiled. 
> S Hunting 

Roger Mathew's reply 28 April

Thanks for your contribution. In defence of my planning 
officers, I don't think it is fair to accuse them of being 
"jobsworth". They have a duty to advise us dispassionately what 
the law is. I take full personal responsibility for the Coca 
Cola logo comparison, having in mind the famous Piccadilly 
Circus roundel. The point is that, as far as Planning Law is 
concerned, the issue was whether a circular structure is 
appropriate here. Thus, it is actually the Coca Cola comparison 
that is relevant and the aesthetic quality of the Peace Window 
that is not.

I don't make the law, nor do my planning officers or my 
committee: we have a duty to apply it. If you think it's 
illogical, you need to lobby MPs, who have the power to change