‘IT IS AN OVERWHELMING CHALLENGE’ – NEW COUNCIL LEADER SPEAKS ABOUT THE ROAD AHEAD

‘It is an overwhelming challenge but the public voted for change so we are doing that’ – that’s some the new leader of the Isle of Wight Council, Councillor Lora Peacey-Wilcox, who has received more than 700 congratulatory messages since her election at Wednesday’s full council meeting.

Wining the leadership race against the Conservative’s Councillor Steve Hastings, by 2 votes (20 to 18) Cllr Peacey-Wilcox said the next step is to find out exactly where the council is with projects and each portfolio, with cabinet members asking some searching questions.

She said:

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“The first thing we need to focus on is the Covid recovery as that has an effect on our mental health, our physical wellbeing, everything. The economic recovery of our towns and shops are very important.”

Cllr Peacey-Wilcox now fronts the Alliance Group, made from independent and party political councillors, taking control of the council, who now face an ‘overwhelming challenge’.

“Sixty-one per cent of Islanders voted for a change, we have to make an attempt to make that change because the public would never forgive us.

“We have done that and with public support, I am hoping we will get somewhere.”

While the Conservatives failed to win the majority in the 6th May elections, lost control of the council and then the leadership race, Cllr Peacey-Wilcox hoped both sides of the chamber would have been able to work together. She said:

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“Cllr Hastings wrote a letter all to work together, all to be lovey-dovey and then you had two pieces of venom spat across the chamber. They give in one hand and take in the other.”

Cllr Peacey-Wilcox said they have offered friendship and are willing to work with people by putting Cllr John Nicholson in as chair of the health and social care policy and scrutiny committee as well as opening up to scrutiny, by restoring reverse proportionality.

“If the Conservatives wish to scrutinise us, they can. It just shows how we are open and transparent and they clearly were not.”

An issue in Cllr Peacey-Wilcox’s ward of Cowes Medina has been the troublesome Floating Bridge, which she says she and fellow Cllr Karl Love were barred from receiving information about, by former leader Dave Stewart.

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Moving ahead to fix the problems with the vessel, she said due to the lack of information, they don’t know where they are with the Floating Bridge so it is something they will have to uncover. Plans have been made, however, for the Bridge but nothing that can be acted on yet.

Speaking about the influx of congratulations she has received, Cllr Peacey-Wilcox said she was flabbergasted…

“I would love to get back to everybody she said but I am absolutely overwhelmed and I would like their support at all times — I will be calling on them!”

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The views/opinions expressed in these comments are solely those of the author and do not represent those of Island Echo. House rules on commenting must be followed at all times.
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Reg Dennis
Reg Dennis
11 months ago

Honestly Lora, did you honestly expect anything different from hastings, he has a well deserved reputation for being a nasty, arrogant and generally unpleasant piece of work.

Jerry Riley
Jerry Riley
11 months ago

Sort out the over development IF you want LASTING Islander’s approval.

We can’t offer the large brown envelopes but CAN ensure you stay in your well paid job

Dave Rose
Dave Rose
11 months ago

I still find the comment by Cllr Peacey-Wilcox that they were banned from receiving information regarding the Floating Bridge which directly affects the people they represent in West and East Cowes to be of great concern. Perhaps only now will the true facts – and the great cost – be revealed of the total mismanagement by the previous Administration.

Neil Gray
Neil Gray
Reply to  Dave Rose
11 months ago

I call for a public inquiry into the floating bridge con.

Mariner58
Mariner58
11 months ago

Oh dear, I think that everybody expects it to be very difficult and extremely challenging (and I sincerely wish her great success) but ‘overwhelming’?

The last council leader to be overwhelmed ran away and seeing Mr Bacon back in the cabinet is hardly reassuring.

Perhaps start with less emotive language?

Stephen
Stephen
11 months ago

Good luck Lura. I really hope you uncover all the cover ups the Cons have hidden.
It will be nice to hear and see the council are helping listing and doing thengs to keep this very special Island top of the UK.
Do the right thing and you will be here for a long time.
Once again good luck.

Tony
Tony
11 months ago

Does she mean max rise in council tax and more cuts?

Reg Dennis
Reg Dennis
Reply to  Tony
11 months ago

Cllr Brodie has opposed tax rises each year and come up with sensible alternatives which were utterly ignored by the conservatives, now perhaps he will be listened to and supported, apart from bacon there are some really good people for her to make use of to benefit the Island instead of the back pockets of a few.

Jerry Riley
Jerry Riley
11 months ago

Watch certain councillors very closely, those with vested interests in Ryde seafront etc.

Reg Dennis
Reg Dennis
Reply to  Jerry Riley
11 months ago

You may not have noticed but the one you seem to be referring to never stood for re-election

Alan Braithwaite
Alan Braithwaite
Reply to  Reg Dennis
11 months ago

It is on the pay roll still.

Neil Gray
Neil Gray
11 months ago

I Call upon her to launch an inquiry into the floating bridge mismanagement.

Miss sensible
Miss sensible
11 months ago

To be honest I sit and wait with baited breath….
Have heard it all before…
Blah blah blah …
Voted in then the excuses well we inherited this problem that problem etc ….
I hope for the islanders sake it does all get better …..
But as I say baited breath !!!!!!?

 

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