I have spent the last year fiercely debating with a certain group of people in my constituency. They live in Woburn, as do I, and they berate me every time they see me about the Centre Parcs planning application, which was approved last week by the Secretary of State.
I could be buying the paper, walking the dogs,getting into my car or onto the train, it doesn’t matter, they have never missed an opportunity to ‘have a go’ at me.
It comes with the turf.
Meeting friends and family at the Black Horse for lunch over the weekend, I noticed two of my main antagonists at the bar and my heart sank, especially as they came over to the group.
I don’t mind having to deal with people in public, but I hate it when people take a pot at the kids. They aren’t the MP, that’s my job so it’s just not necessary for anyone to make the comment ‘why does or doesn’t your mother? Etc’. However, again, it comes with the turf and the girls knew the score when I chose to live right bang in the middle of a local community.
I was pleasantly shocked when the gentleman who has given me the most grief came up to me and apologised! These were his words:
“I know we have given you a rough ride but I have to give it to you, you stuck to your guns and I think you may have been right”.
I wasn’t sure if I had heard him correctly, but there was more.
“I’ve come round to your way of thinking, we all have, can I buy you a drink”?
Could he buy me a drink?
This is the man who, when I saw him stroking Teddy the Post Office dog , in order to avoid him, I dived into the old town hall until he had gone!
“Do you know” he said, “who my lad could write to for a job? He will finish university next summer and doesn’t fancy the commute into London each day; he would like to live at home, so Centre Parcs would be ideal.”
Yes said I, sardonically, you can buy me a drink.
“A glass of champagne please”.
As revenge goes it wasn’t up to much, but the smile and the hug he gave me when I left after the lunch was worth waiting for! And they say you can't win them all!
Well at least you're talking to your local constituents, which is a lot better than some MPs I've heard of. I'm sure it's a pain getting hassled when you go about your daily business but you are clearly a resilient politician!
I dont understand why people object to this. The woodland is "farmed" not natural and will hide the centreparcs. Furthermore Centreparcs will become a very powerful ally if the government ever gets it into its head to turn our local countryside into housing because the last thing centreparcs want is to have their centreparc in the middle of a housing estate