There were a number of recommendations one of which was to establish a Police Authority. On
In 2010 Senator Breckon lodged a proposition asking that the States request the Home Affairs Minister to bring forward a proposition to establish a Police Authority. As it happens Senator Breckon was kicking against an open door because the Minister, Senator Le Marquand was supportive. It should be recalled that it was deemed by some, that the absence of a Police Authority led to the unsavoury suspension of the former Police Chief Graham Power.
To his credit Senator Le Marquand recruited a small group of States Members to assist in drafting a proposition which included amending the Police Law. I was a member of that group but was not a States Member when the proposition was lodged. There was consultation with the Honorary Police who formed the view that they did not want to be part of the proposed Police Authority, even though it had been agreed 12 years previously.
The Honorary Police’s response was disappointing, blinkered and to a degree selfish. They are supposed to serve the best interests of the
The purpose of a Police Authority is to produce annual policing plans to suit the
The Senator was faced with a dilemma, that of going down the Clothier road or acquiesce to the Honorary Police. The Senator went for the compromise approach, possibly in the belief that the Honorary Police will become part of the Police Authority in the future. However the States is supposed to govern, what if the States Police did not wish to be part of the Police Authority would their stance have been supported?
The late Sir Cecil Clothier was a deep and astute thinker and it worth being reminded what he had to say about the Honorary Police and its resistance to change.
"This valuable resource should be nurtured and developed rather than cut down. But unless the institution known as the Honorary Police is cared for, it will in our view without doubt die slowly but surely of neglect and failure to adapt. Those who would like to bring about the abolition of the Honorary Police have only to ensure that nothing is done. It is paradoxical to record that the very few of our witnesses who wanted the institution of the Honorary Police to remain substantially as it now is, are unwitting architects of its demise."
Yesterday morning I rode my bike to
It was pleasing to see such a turn out but I wonder how many people were giving consideration to the prospect of loosing the field. No decision has yet been made so I am grateful to David Richardson and to the JEP for publishing his letter below, which draws attention to the folly of building on the field when the option of redeveloping the school on site is the cheaper and logical option.
The Threat of the Loss of Playing Fields to Development.
The proposals to build on two games fields in Jersey (Les Quennevais & St Martin) are testament to the way Jersey is falling prey to unabated immigration and becoming overpopulated at an alarming rate. Already this population influx is translating itself into increased pressure on our public amenities such as schools.
The knee jerk reaction of seeking to build on existing games fields is profoundly unwise.
Bob Hill is correct in his outspoken concerns. This rape of our land is as serious as a transgression of human rights. These games fields have been used by our children for the last hundred or so years for recreation, for football games and sporting events as well as community gatherings.
We should not repeat the mistakes of our neighbours in the
where they have converted games pitches to development. UK
Jersey we should value every square inch (cm2) of land for nature or agriculture and stop swallowing up these areas for further school buildings. If we really need to build more school space, then let it be upwards so as to avoid this needless waste. We could easily renovate the existing schools and keep these games areas for perpetuity. The loss of further green fields is as abhorrent and as invasive as building in the middle of a game reserve. Sport is hugely valued in Jersey as an essential part of our quality of life.
Those of us who still have our wits about us must stand up to the suburban sprawl now before we lose yet more areas to development especially our school playing fields.
As a species we are becoming increasingly aware that keeping fit is important to our health, morale and even therefore our longevity and wisdom. So if we convert these games pitches to development, we are being both short sighted and stupid.
David R.T Richardson
A sobering thought, particularly in an Olympic year