DEMOCRACY in Steyning is being defeated, it was claimed at Monday’s parish council meeting.
Cllr David Barling made an impassioned speech, defending his actions when he was chairman of Steyning Parish Council.
He had been held to task over a statement he made regarding the 11th-hour calling of the by-election in May, referred to in a written question to the council.
But he defended his words and said he refused to be silenced or bullied.
“There are things that need saying and facts that need putting before the people of Steyning,” he added.
He said he had been ‘dragged back into’ the skatepark issue consistently, despite the fact he had resigned as parish council chairman following his election as county councillor for Bramber Castle in May.
He pointed out the council had been bombarded since the public meeting on the skate park, including 130 emails and 35 information requests.
The clerk had spent 137 hours dealing with freedom of information requests, complaints and two judicial reviews since January, he added.
“The cost is substantial. Democracy in this town is being flagrantly defeated. Our meagre reserves are being depleted time after time.”
Mr Barling added: “In all honesty, a period of silence would help.
“It is unbelieveable to me that this has happened. I fear for the future but I have always been a stout supporter of democracy.”