A WILTSHIRE councillor has spoken out against Tetbury Town Council after he was criticised for meeting town residents and giving advice on how to stop unwanted development.
Simon Killane, who has helped draw up a document to give residents in Malmesbury a greater say in planning, was slated in an email between Tetbury councillors.
The comments were made prior to a presentation he made to the Save Tetbury Action Group (STAG) in March 2012, but came to light this week.
At the meeting Mr Killane, who is also a Wiltshire councillor, advised the Tetbury action group about how to draw up a similar “neighbourhood plan” to the one being used to fight off development in Malmesbury.
However, in an email between Tetbury councillors, Mr Killane was described as a “pain” and “bad mannered” by councillor Ian Maslin, who was unhappy he did not inform Tetbury Town Council about the meeting.
Mr Killane said he felt his advice should have been welcomed.
Saying that the council was partly to blame for losing control of planning, he added: “Malmesbury needs to use the Tetbury example as a very local reminder of what not to do and how our neighbourhood plan has saved us from the open season approach that will bring the worst kind of development decisions to Tetbury.”
Neighbourhood development plans were introduced through the Localism Act 2011 and enable communities to say where they want new development.
Mr Maslin’s comments came to light after a copy of the email exchange between Tetbury councillors was passed onto Mr Killane.
At the time of Mr Killane’s presentation there was no neighbourhood plan in place in Tetbury. One is now in the consultancy stage.
Cllr Maslin, a partner in Malmesbury architects Clarke and Maslin, said: “He should have had the courtesy to talk to us before speaking to STAG.
“He is a helpful man and listens to what people are saying and we would welcome his help. I think this is just a misunderstanding.”
“I agree that the town should have a neighbourhood plan in place but these things take a lot of time.”