Ben Glass - Dorset Echo
BRUCE the border collie is to join in a West Dorset District
Council meeting this week — after a special invite from
planners. The request came after his owner penned a spoof
letter on controversial proposals for Speedway at Weymouth’s
Wessex Stadium. Officials at the council decided his views
were so important he should ‘address’ a meeting of the council’s
development control committee.
Mother-of-two Claire Whiles, 41, of Chickerell Road, said:
“I sent a rather tongue in cheek letter to the council’s
planning department with regard to Weymouth Speedway’s planning
application. The letter was in fact from my border collie
Bruce, saying how he hoped that the application would go
through as he enjoyed going to speedway with his family
and how everyone was so nice to him and the noise did not
bother him at all. Then Bruce received a letter asking if
he would like to speak for three minutes at the planning
meeting the letter was addressed to him, care of me.” She
added: “I’m tempted to take him along with a placard reading
something like ‘Dogs for Weymouth Speedway’. I thought that
was the best way because I couldn’t get hold of Dr Dolittle
to translate. It’s hilarious. My partner, Robin Spicer,
is a director of Weymouth Speedway. The whole family loves
going so this planning application has been quite stressful.
So I suppose you could say the letter to Bruce was a bit
of light relief.”
Council development services manager John Greenslade said
it was important all views were important including those
of dogs. He said: “This application has generated a tremendous
amount of public interest with strong feelings on both sides.
The response was intended for the dog’s owner Claire Whiles
who, along with more than 500 other people who have also
written in, has been invited to attend the planning committee.
If she wants to use that opportunity to express her views
or indeed those of her dog then she’s welcome to do so."
The development control east meeting will take place on
Picture: John Guird JG1213
Dear Andrew Martin,
My name is Bruce and I'm a border collie. I'm writing in
support of Weymouth speedway.
I enjoy going every week with my family where everybody
makes a fuss of me. The noise doesn't bother me at all because
there are no air horns.
It's nice to go somewhere where dogs are allowed so I don't
have to stay home on my own. So often dogs aren't allowed
into public places. Speedway people are friendly, kind and
nice people so I hope you support the planning application.
I refer to your recent communication concerning the above
The application is due to be considered by the development
control committee which will take place on November 23,
2006 in the council offices.
The officers' recommendation is to refuse the application.
However, it is for the committee to determine the application
and the committee may not accept the recommendation. Your
comments will be drawn to the attention of the members of
the committee for their consideration at the meeting.
In addition you are invited to attend the meeting and address
the committee in person for up to three minutes.
Yours faithfully, John Greenslade (development services