IN the middle of a major pandemic there are many priorities that need our attention. Each of us is likely to think slightly differently about what those might be.

My own list would prioritise helping small businesses to survive and prosper, supporting the recovery of care homes, building the resilience of the NHS and creating a modern zero carbon economy. Few would say that the need right now is for the focus to be on re-organising local government.

Yet that is exactly what the government is insisting on. Craven District Council is expected to be abolished and merged into some form of North Yorkshire wide organisation.

Imagine the disruption as officials and politicians focus on the arrangements and staff waste a lot of time and expense redeploying each other. Imagine the things which will not get proper attention whilst they are worrying about the changes over the next two years. Then visualise how easy it will be for you to contact your local councillor after it is all finished if there is only one for the whole of Skipton or the whole of the Dales and that person is constantly travelling to Northallerton.

I was going to end this letter by asking whether there could be any dafter policy priority. Then I read another newspaper’s front page headline. Apparently, they are planning to re-organise the NHS.


Is that really what you want your health service to be concentrating on right now?

Craven District Councillor Andy Brown

Green Party