How to turn a solemn​ occasion into a​ farce – Waverley style! The egos​ have landed?

‘Your Waverley’s very own Game of Thrones?

PLUS ÇA CHANGE, PLUS C’EST LA MÊME CHOSE … we flipping hope not!

So there we were – all 89 of us! – on the edge of our seats, glued to our computer screens, waiting, just waiting to watch Waverley’s answer to Game of Thrones – otherwise known as the most important and solemn occasion to take place annually at Waverley Towers: THE MAYOR MAKING CEREMONY and WELCOME TO A NEW ADMINISTRATION …

and this happens – or, rather doesn’t happen!

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Perhaps if the new Mayor hadn’t taken such an excruciatingly long time to find her spectacles (to avoid future faux pas, we find a natty little string of coloured beads helps, Madam Mayor!) we might have been able to hear retiring Mayor and former Councillor, Farnham’s Denise Le Gal’s, rendering of ‘So long, farewell, auf wiedersehen, goodbye’ but we, her not so adoring public, were denied Le Gal’s swan song due to the Godalming Webcast Gremlins who have yet to leave the building – unlike many of their erstwhile former Tory masters!

But, if the residents of Waverley cannot salute you for your efforts on their behalf, we, at the Waverley Web, will. We have awarded you our very own Waverley Web JWD – for a ‘job well done.’ But, for the record, it’s a disgrace that you were cut off in your prime by the most inefficient Webcaster in the Western World!

New Mayor, Cllr Foryszewski’s beloved German Shepherds could have provided a better service than the Wally in charge of Webcasting at Waverley!

Where’s Wally? Who’s Wally? What a Wally! We feel a new campaign coming on and strongly recommend the NEW ADMINISTRATION puts sorting out its Webcasting Wally at the top of its new Agenda before Wally makes Waverley a laughing stock – again!

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For pity’s sake, Is this the image we want and expect to see of our Mayor?

Describing herself as the “Gobby- girl from Birmingham”, whom, we might add, managed to ruffle feathers in Alfold before sweeping into Cranleigh, the new Mayor was generous in her praise for those who had given her the opportunities, over the past 20 years, to reach this, the pinnacle of her success to date. Mainly due, she said, to Gone-to-Potts, who, grinning from ear to ear from the sidelines having purloined one of her colleague’s seats, paid tribute to her retiring Farnham colleague, Le Gal for her unstinting service to the Borough.

It must be acknowledged that the new Mayor has succeeded, against the odds, where many others before her have failed. For no Tory administration holding the balance of power has ever have permitted ‘THE OPPOSITION’ to take the Chain of Office! And if you think that’s sour grapes just take a peek at Waverley’s history books. However, in a sign of what we hope is going to be a kinder, fairer politics at a local level and, in an act of considerable magnanimity, Councillor Foryszewski’s nomination was proposed by Farnham Cllr Carole Cockburn, who waxed lyrical about the merits of Mary  and seconded by a very gracious Lib-Dem, Paul Follows, who said:

The new Mayor has succeeded where many others before her have failed. No Tory administration holding power would ever have allowed ‘the opposition’ to take the chain of office! Of that, you can be sure. Mary’s nomination was  proposed by Farnham Residents’ John Ward and seconded by a very eloquent Lib Dem Paul Follows saying:

 “I hope whatever rosette you wear you will serve us with dedication and dignity, and there would be fewer things that separate us than the those that will draw us to work together.”

With considerable dignity and humility, Mary Forszewski acknowledged the recent election defeats, saying she wanted everyone to embrace and work through the “challenges ahead” and offering the hand of friendship to the man who was responsible for the foundation of the Farnham Residents’ Group, and his election successes saying:

“Why aren’t you up here Jerry [Hyman]? We’ll get on well together, won’t we?”

If this is a sign of things to come, the Waverley Web’s job here is done but, despite these promising new green shoots, we were disappointed to see that in the divvying-up of all the major roles, Farnham’s Mungo-Jerry appears to have been cast into the Boondocks. If that’s his reward for founding a party and helping to lead it to greatness, for standing up for his own and everyone else’s residents and speaking his mind, maybe our work here isn’t quite done …

As one – slightly – disenchanted Correspondent commented: the “Ego’s had Landed.” 

” Vote Rainbow Alliance – get two Tories?

Fortunately, we didn’t miss out on all the back-slapping before the Webcast’s Wally pressed the wrong nob – AGAIN!! and we did grab this!

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and then this!!



So now the Annual Mayor’s Show is over, robes donned, chains swapped and drinks imbibed in the Mayor’s parlour…? 

The WW has applauded you Madam Mayor for your past efforts, and criticised you once or twice too! But is there any possible chance you could do the one thing that the Waverley Web and the voting fodder of this great borough of ours have been waiting a long time for? Something no one else has achieved?

Trash the Rumbellows Friday night webcast machine and buy one that works? Whatever you do don’t take it to the Cranleigh Recycling centre, because your county council colleagues have ruled that you will have to carry it all the way to ..Caterham!

By the way, does anyone know if a new leader and deputy were appointed?

And, what about an EXECUTIVE? Is there one?

You might find out here: Because Cllr Follows is taking over from the Waverley Web, and a damn fine job he is making of it. Off to find a sun lounger.


20 thoughts on “How to turn a solemn​ occasion into a​ farce – Waverley style! The egos​ have landed?”

  1. I attended the meeting hoping for something new, there was hardly anything new. The mayor was selected before the meeting (as before) the new Leader was selected before the meeting (nothing new there either). The webcam cut off the head of anyone standing (again nothing new). The selection of an opposition Councillor was new and a well deserved appointment. There was much over egging of compliments, not necessary, a “good job well done”, would have been sufficient.

    Could someone please advise Madam Mayor to speak into the mike, I had trouble hearing her.

    Very disappointed that Jerry Hyman was not made Leader or Deputy and not on the Executive either. Executive is made up of 3 Lib Dems, 4 FRA, 1 Green and 1 Labour, surprised there was not room for at least 1 Tory. I thought that the Executive was going to be done away with as an anachronism of the previous Council. I hope it does not start making decisions behind closed doors!

    I wish someone would tell the Tory Boys that whistling and whooping at an announcement saying what a jolly good job the previous Mayor had done is yobbish and a poor show.

    1. At least you got to hear the whistling whooping, which was very faint on the webcast. But what was that all about? The whole tone of the proceedings went from low to lower. Very little decorum about the whole event. We here in team WW didn’t hear any of the appintments, Mayor’s announcements due to the Wally in charge of the webcast.

      A very disappinting evening which was in no way the fault of the new administration but what is left of the old. At least they went out on the same low we have come to expect.

      As for Farnham Residents’ founder and stalwart – does anyone remember he single handedly stopped the large scale voluntary transfer of all Waverley’s housing stok to a housing asociation?

      We looked up some old newspaper cuttings, as a council tenant he rallied council tenants not to agree to flog off housing, not sure under whose political banner that was?

      He, Paul Follows, Liz Townsend, Kevin Deanus; Richard Seaborne and David Else should all be given roles in the new administration. To exclude Jerry Hyman, simply discraceful. – Who wants to put a bet on that was something to do with the officers and The Potty One?

      One hundred to 1 on, the officers had their say on that one. They hate being put on the spot. Hate answering questions, and being forced to fudge the answers to get him off their backs.

      As for Farnham Residents’ – hang your heads in shame if you were a party to this. We will be watching you all.

      The eastern villagers are more angry than Farnham residents because they watched him fight their corner over development on flood plains. He doesn’t just talk – he acts, visits the sites that others cannot even be bothered to find out where they are.

  2. So I totally agree most of the speeches were overly long. I tend to make mine about half of some of the others now as a rule at this things!

    Something I will reveal is though that in seeking an exec of all the talents – we – both John and I – asked if 1 or perhaps even 2 tories might want to join an expanded exec of 10. We both recognise that there are a few really good councillors in that bunch and sought to bring them in. They declined the offer.

    I would also point out that their group has not rewarded many of there hardest working councillors councillors and I would take a punt it has something to do with being too frequently on the same page as people like me and Jerry (or being complimented by sites like this!). Look to the Conservative group for these criticisms because we tried.

    We are looking at new models to replace the exec – I am chairing the the standards committee which is what is going to consider this. I want change too in how the councillors run things – but at the same time I want to understand the various options and we all wish to avoid causing a painful organisational shock that confuses everyone. I am also not just going to accept ‘what they used to do before the exec’ as acceptable by default either unless someone can prove to me its actually better.

    And wow you are so right about those people hooting..what was all that!

    1. But what about WW’s 100 to 1 question ? To the best of my belief and knowledge, the executive is chosen by the new Leader and his Deputy – certainly no input from officers and definitely no input from the previous Leader. So if Jerry isn’t on the Exec, it’s down to John & Paul. Am I right Paul ?
      Before the abuse starts, don’t forget I’m supposed to be one of the good guys 😁

      1. Great to hear from the best chairman we have witnessed at Waverley – fair – transparent – who isn’t afraid to vote against something in which he truly believes is wrong for the borough.

        So John Ward has something to answer for then? Because we doubt that Paul Follows would have scuppered Jerry Hyman’s nomination for any of the real jobs! He has often been on the same side at planning meetings we have watched as together they have frequently moved away from the usual parochial stance, and stood up for other parts of the borough.

        From memory we have never metered out any abuse against the good guys, including yourself David – welcome back and let’s have your view on things as they progress.

        Our team WW allows new ouncillors/administrations to make three mistakes in the honeymoon period. Then they are on their own!

  3. Thank you for your comments Paul – that clears up one of the questions we had.

    So the Tory Tossers, don’t want anything to do with your new administration. Now we wonder why?

    Acting like a bunch of spoiled kids again… throwing their toys out of the pram because they have lost control?

    Of course they haven’t rewarded their hardest working councillors – because the hard working councillors are those who stick their heads above the parapet and seek answers and relay residents’ concerns. Refuse to be bullied by officers, and don’t always do their masters’ bidding. In other words the men and women who do the job they were elected to do.

    Why don’t you ask Jerry Hyman or Liz Townsend to join the Executive? She can then put two fingers up to her party – and continue serving the people of the Eastern Villages ith the same fervour she has in the past?

    Changing th system may come as a shock – but it is one huge shock that Waverley needs.

  4. For the TT’s to reject the apparent offer of seats on the executive is petty in the extreme.WBC needs to move together as one and ignore the unpleasantness of the past to the benefit of the borough as a whole.
    What has Gerry Hyman done to be treated in the way he has been? Could it be the rest of the FR’s are scared of being shown up by their far more knowledgeable colleague? They need to remember that without him the FR group might not exist and use his skills to benefit of the Council.

  5. Jerry fought against huge development in the countryside that is damaging wildlife and the environment. He was vociferous in his condemnation of building on land that has flooded over many years. Land that will flood again in the future.

    Farnham people should start telling the Farnham Residents’ Group that to isolate its biggest asset is a BIG mistake!

  6. Cllr Townsend would need to change the colour of her rosette to get a seat on the Executive and I expect it’s only worth being a Cllr if you are a member of the Executive. She is so well known for all the effort she puts into defending Cranleigh, but alas I fear all in vain. What a frustrating 4 years she has ahead, disappearing without a voice into the opposition.

  7. Don’t you believe it! If the Elizabrth Townsend we have witnessed disappears without a voice we shall unmask the Waverley Web.

    Put up a picture of our whole team – every single one of us. She will never let Cranleigh down.

    1. The reply from Paul Follows implies he offered her a seat at the table but she declined it. So is that putting party politics before Cranleigh? Or maybe in his reply he was just dancing around his handbag as to who the two Conservatives he offered a seat to were. He keeps popping up hear talking about transparency which I totally applaud- perhaps he could tell us which two tories declined his offer of a role on the executive to better serve their residents?

  8. We await his response with great interest. Who were the two Tories who declined – that is THE QUESTION?

  9. Another four years of the usual shambolic WBC?

    A mayor who appears to be more interested in what she will wear then what we have to say?

    Decisions behind closed doors?

    A leader of the conservatives who jumped seats to ensure her return to continue her work behind the scenes. Sacrificing one of her colleagues in doing so.

    Ignoring the true and good councillors who dare to fight for what’s right for their voters all over the borough. Liz Townsend and Jerry Hyman to name but a few. Shame on you WBC.

    Officers behind the scenes who’s word are law. We vote for our councillors not the officers on their great big salaries and pensions all paid by our good selves.

    Remember Paul…POWER CORRUPTS…

    So the new administration needs a good strong broom to sweep clean and rid us voters of the rubbish within WBC.

    WE ARE WATCHING YOU ………. the recordings of your meetings need​ updating ASAP or we will presume you don’t want us to know the truth.

    1. Hang on – to be fair, Cllr Follows said he offered 1 possibly 2 tories ( he’s obfuscating in his response) seats at the table but they declined his offer. We assume one is Cllr Townsend as he has spoken highly of her in the past. If that’s the case she didn’t want to be empowered to stand up for the people of Cranleigh. She would rather not have the responsibility one can assume. Many people voted for her because she stood for something different, like she did when she Chaired the Civic Society. It’s seems she peaked at that point. Classic ‘Imposter Syndrome’. This was her chance at a portfolio. If SW cons return in 4 years doubtful she will get a chance then as she’s not in their club. Such a shame. Not so fearless after all.

    2. Just for the record, Liz has a seat on four committees and Kevin Deanus & Richard Seabourne both have Overview & Scriutiny Committee chairs (not allowed to call them chairmen), as well as seats on other committees, so hardly ignored or unrewarded as Paul suggested.

  10. Thank you for putting the record straight David. Sorry for the faux pas from now its ‘chair.’
    But, we still do not know who the two Tories were that turned down a seat at the Executive table. Tell us do? If not we will tell you?

  11. So I would like to just clear some things up.

    If the leader nominates someone , they can decline.

    However – it’s the group/party leaders that have this conversation. We can’t cherrypick who we would like from the Conservatives (I wish we could). The offer goes to Julia Potts – your group may have 2 seats on the executive – she declined on behalf of her group.

    Each group leader was responsible for sorting our their committee allocations. I can only speak for the process I used for the Lib Dem group. I proposed some individuals for the executive (for the seats on our ‘side’) – which the group signed off on. People I nominated btw were because they had a specific outside professional capability in that area that made sense rather than anything else. I have this apparently novel approach where I want councillors to be as active and capable as possible in the roles that they hold. This was something that extended back even to when we were picking candidates before the election and I really do think we have an excellent group of 14.

    In our meeting anyway I just opened it up to the floor in our group meeting – I have a lot of new councillors so everything is a bit new in that sense. Following that meeting (and about 400 emails between the group later) we got to something everyone was happy with – based upon what people wanted, experience they had, hours they could or could not put in etc.

    We have group leaders in the Lib Dems (in this case its me) but its not some autocratic nonsense – its a collaboration or it wouldn’t work. I actually have no idea how the other groups pick their commitee seats but I just went for what is natural to me in this position and just asked the group and talked to people.

    Hope that makes sense anyway and happy to answer anything further.

    1. Thanks for clearing that up Paul. You asked the Conservative group if one or two would like to join the executive and they declined. Cranleigh and the villages have no representation on the executive. I don’t think this will ever change. Cranleigh Conservatives aren’t part of SW Conservatives, so they may as well not bother. It’s sad that Cllr Townsend is exactly where they want her; in the tent, in the back and with no power or influence whatsoever. They’ve done a right good stitch up on her. She’s neutralised. It may not have dawned on her yet. I know I sound hard on Liz, but this is not the intention. It’s just sad to see someone not realise their full potential. I’m sure she’s knows shes appreciated and has worked very hard over the past few years. She could have made a positive contribution if circumstances had been different. Such a waste of talent and effort.

      1. Bunty – so its not about where each member of the exec is a councillor for. On the exec we work for the borough as a whole. My group has councillors from all over and I can assure you that Cllr Cole and Cllr Reed will ensure Cranleigh and the East is not forgotten. Cllr Cole is going to chair the JPC and take up the chair/vice-chair of Eastern/Central Area planning too. Part of that role will be working to make the planning process better.

        As to the other point it frustrates me too. However the praise of this site (and even from people like me and Jerry) – though its very much deserved – may have done her no favours as part of the group she sits in. It’s probably safe to say that I (and the Lib Dem group more widely) acknowledge good councillors from any political stripe and will endeavour to work with them any way we can.

  12. It IS about the East having representation on the exec I’m afraid. You have two cranleigh Cllrs but have excluded them from the exec. That makes you no better than the previous administration. So please forgive me for not believing in the first instance what you have written. The East of the borough has been clearly exploited in terms of the allocation of unsustainable housing numbers due to lack of Greenbelt protection and no representation on the exec for years and years. I haven’t heard of the two Cllrs you mention but as you haven’t put either on the exec you must see them as less able than the others. This blog has become increasingly jaundiced (sorry but I see it that way), but maybe Cllr Townsend feels tremendous loyalty to her Party as but for her Party she would not have been elected. It’s understandable that she wants to keep her friends as those who aspire to be MPs need not only to have access to funds, but well nourished networks of influence. This site may have done for her on the latter point and made her a pariah, but here’s hoping she wins the Euromillions. Cheerio.

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