In response to Cllr Morgan’s letter in last week’s Derbyshire Times, it is the facts he intentionally leaves out which tells us all we need to know about the relationship between the previous Lib Dem administration and Chesterfield Market.
He fails to mention that when the operating surplus (that’s the money made by the open market above and beyond the council’s annual expectation), was lower than predicted due to recession, the support of the council was suddenly not quite so visible.
It is interesting to note that in the last year of Lib Dem control, with market traders working harder than ever just to survive, the council forced traders to stump up half the money to pay for their own week free holiday! Again, no mention of this in Cllr Morgan’s letter. The fundamental difference between the old Lib Dem council and this Labour administration is that market traders are now guaranteed a week free every year, a reward for their continued loyalty to this town’s economic future. This has been hailed by the overwhelming majority of traders who know only too well that times are tough for everyone, and market traders are no exception.
When times are good and profits are made, it’s only right that traders should be rewarded. However, it’s when times are difficult when a council has to go even further, with less money available, to protect our market and attract new traders from elsewhere. In short, it’s a relationship of principle, not just profit.
CLLR NICK STRINGER
Executive Member for Leisure, Culture and Tourism, CBC