Thursday, 4 March 2010

My own letter is in the Ely Weekly News

"Anyone heard from our MP?

Sir, I didn't know whether to laugh or cry when I read Hilary van de Watering's letter (Trust to create 1,000 allotments - Weekly News, February 25).

Does she seriously believe that the creation by the National Trust of 1,000 allotments - some of them with "managers" - will in any sense compensate the country for the lost food production from up to 14,000 acres of our finest Fen farmland?

Cornelius Vermuyden must be turning in his grave because of what is going on in our area and of Ms van de Watering's musings.

Ms van de Watering also mentions me in the context of more flies in the Fens following the trust's Wicken Vision being implemented. It is true that the trust has admitted, almost jokingly, that we will get more flies but I have to say that those most affected - the residents of the ancient Fen-edge settlements of Wicken, Upware, Burwell, Reach, Swaffham Prior, Swaffham Bulbeck, Lode & Longmeadow, Bottisham, Stow cum Quy, Fen Ditton, Horningsea and Waterbeach - are much more concerned about a further influx of mosquitoes.

Maybe Ms van de Watering doesn't hear, see or feel many of these pests in Ely's St. Mary's Street and isn't too concerned about them. Others are.

The saddest aspect of this on-going argument is the conspicuous silence of James Paice, our present MP. Mr Paice, who is described as "shadow minister of agriculture", has had many opportunities to support agriculture and food-growing in our Fens. Him being big mates with some of the early supporters of the Wicken Vision may be the reason for his still sitting on the fence, which is one of the reasons that I am campaigning against him at the General Election. Ms van de Watering stands for 1,000 managed and very probably wet allotments. Nobody knows what Mr Paice stands for. Everybody knows what I stand for. I stand for farming and food production in our fine Fens because our growing population needs feeding and our food hasn't always been available from overseas and may not be in the future. Nothing is certain in this world any more.

Geoffrey Woollard
Independent Parliamentary Candidate
for South East Cambridgeshire
Chapel Farm

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