Row over Medway city status
by Alan Watkins
A row over City status for Medway is set to hit the High
Street this weekend.
Medway’s Green Party members plan to campaign against the
proposal in Chatham on Saturday at 10am.
They have accused the Conservative administration of failing to
consult the public. They say councillors are spending money on a
campaign for which the benefits are not known.
They say Rochester chould regain its city status which was lost
member Simon Marchant said: “The council have tried this before
“At the moment all we have is propoganda from the council sying
it will be lovely and nice, and great things will happen. Will
“Constitutional changes of this size should not go through on
the nod, especially if driven by this most undemocratic of
Trish Marchant (left), another member, said the decision was
made behind closed doors.
She called for proper and honest consultations so people could
understand the pros and cons.
“The Tories have been in power for so long they think they own
Medway and it’s about time we told them they don’t.”
A third member, Tracy Coutts, pointed out that Medway was a
river and not a place.
But Cllr Rodney Chambers, Leader of the Conservatives who
announced the bid for 2012 Jubilee City status, said: “We recently
asked residents if they support the bid and 68 per cent of people
say they do.
“Unlike the Green Party, I believe that Medway is aspirational
and forward looking and should receive the recognition it
“Any campaign costs will be closely monitored, but a referendum,
as suggested by the Green Party, would be very costly and would
most likely cost more than the campaign itself.
“As the campaign progresses we look forward to engaging all
residents and listening to them as well as highlighting the
advantages that city status will bring, many of which have already
been covered by the Medway Messenger and Medway Matters in the past
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