Tories walked away

WHAT a fascinating pair of letters from Conservative county councillors regarding their voting for the guided bus. CAST.IRON (the group campaigning for restoration of the Cambridge-St Ives rail service) noted publicly that the total number of councillors

WHAT a fascinating pair of letters from Conservative county councillors regarding their voting for the guided bus.

CAST.IRON (the group campaigning for restoration of the Cambridge-St Ives rail service) noted publicly that the total number of councillors voting for the scheme recently was less than half of the full council. Our contacts tell us that most members on all sides attended the debate, yet many went home and did not participate in the vote after the lunch break.

This is in stark contrast to the full council meeting that I addressed under a public petition a couple of years ago, when the full Conservative cohort attended and was whipped into a unanimous vote to proceed with the scheme. It would appear that Councillors Hyams and Dutton have been elected since then - wouldn't it be fascinating to know if they would have obeyed the whip at the time? Perhaps they could tell us.

Cynical voters might be suspicious that the mass exodus at the most recent vote stemmed from a need to be able to say 'I didn't vote for the guided bus' when the next county elections come around - at just about the time when the success or failure of the scheme becomes apparent. I couldn't possibly comment.

However, readers should be aware that, while it is true that these esteemed gentlemen did not vote for the mis-guided bus, neither did they vote against it. They just walked away.

A careful re-reading of their letters also reveals that they are fully in favour of the guideway part between St Ives and Cambridge.

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Whilst both councillors are right to berate the Lib Dem candidate for not checking his facts, it seems they are not beyond a bit of smoke-and-mirrors themselves.

TIM PHILLIPS, Chairman, CAST.IRON, Cambridge

* COUNCILLORS Hyams and Dutton tell us (Letters, August 30) that they have misgivings about the guided bus. One says it is "not true" that he voted for it and the other says he "did not vote at all".

That's the problem with the Tories - you never know where they stand. If they don't like what is proposed, why not make their position clear and vote against?

Throughout 12 years of bickering, the Huntingdon contingent on the county council have remained remarkably silent, presumably not wanting to make waves for the Shire Hall mafia who have steamrollered the bus scheme through. Their woolly-mindedness is not helpful.

STUART LITTLEWOOD, St Ives Road, Hemingford Grey

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