Ask the Leader

Please note: in line with the Council’s election protocols, Ask the Leader has now been suspended until after the East Sussex County Council elections on 6 May 2021

The Leader of Wealden District Council is Councillor Bob Standley. He will be pleased to answer any question you may have about Wealden District Council's policies, or other matters involving the Council, which you think are of interest to people living, working or visiting Wealden.

To ask your question, please use our or Ask the Leader - Submit a Question Form

Councillor Standley is the Conservative Leader of the Cabinet of Wealden District Council and has represented Wadhurst since 2004.

Specific inquiries about particular services such as planning applications, licensing or accommodation can be reported online. Please use our directory of tasks on online services' to find the appropriate form. You can also email info@wealden.gov.uk.

We will try to respond within ten working days of receiving your question and your question and the Leader's reply will then be posted on the website. Please provide your name, we don't need your address. If we think the question is inappropriate for publication we will contact you by email to say why.

For information on any of the Ask The Leader questions listed please contact our Communications Officer on pr@wealden.gov.uk.


Car parking at Polegate

25 March 2021

Question: Dear Cllr Standley, Can you tell me if there has been any progression in this matter please? I had communication back from CC Shiner & then had a conversation with Inspector Goss in early January. He told me as you did in your last communication that discussions were ongoing, is that the case? The problem...

Answer: Dear Terence Richings I met Sussex Police recently when they responded to the suggestions, I had made at the January meeting. The three suggestions I made all included a financial contribution from Wealden District Council implementing some parking enforcement in Wealden. My proposals would have avoided Civil Parking Enforcement with the imposition of on-street parking...

Dowland Farm development proposal

25 March 2021

Question: Hi Bob, I recently used this form to ask you where you PERSONALLY stood on the proposed plan for 500 homes being built at Downlands Farm, Uckfield. Unfortunately you gave me an, ahem, “politician’s reply” . Are you in favour of 500 houses being built on the Downlands Farm site? If so can you give...

Answer: Dear Steve Simons You may feel this is again a “politician’s “answer, but any councillor’s view on a planning application should be based on national and local planning policies. I do not have a personal view.  I rarely sit on planning committees but if called to sit on any committee re: Downlands, I would make...

Hailsham Aspires

25 March 2021

Question: Mr Standley, Once again I find myself writing to you regarding Hailsham Aspires. When will WDC take note of the feelings of the residents of Hailsham. This is being driven as an attack on Hailsham by councillors from the north of Wealden. This is the Conservative majority councillors taking no notice of us. Do any...

Answer: Dear Richard Harvey. And once again I must disagree with you. This scheme is not an attack on Hailsham by councillors from the north of Wealden. If anything they are more likely to be more concerned that their areas may miss out because of the amount of investment going to the south of the District....

Recycling Tetra Pak containers

25 March 2021

Question: Would it be possible to kindly send an update on the current recycling situation for Tetra Pak drinks cartons, please? I have seen your comprehensive reply from July 2019 to a similar query on your website. At the time this was going to landfill but I believe you were in talks with one of your...

Answer: Dear Helen Ansell, Thank-you for raising this matter.  I appreciate your confusion regarding the recyclable status of Tetra Pak-style drink cartons. Although beverage carton manufacturers state their packaging is recyclable, its complicated mix of materials: cardboard, plastic and foil make recycling a difficult proposition. After separation into its constituent parts, the final materials are not...

Black Duck public House

25 March 2021

Question: Bob, I am raising the issue surrounding the process used to approve an application for Change of Use for the Black Duck public house in Warbleton. (WD/2020/1964/F). There were 80 letters of objection, objections from your own council (WDC Conservation and Design & WDC Community Development Team), an objection from the Warbleton Parish Council and...

Answer: Dear Matthew van Grutten, Thank-you for raising this matter. The closure of a local pub is always regrettable but the Council has to make decisions based on the national and local planning policies. I am aware that there were a large number of representations on this application but that volume does not automatically mean the...

Developments affecting Rattle Road

4 March 2021

Question: Dear Sir, On behalf of all my local friends and family we are completely sick to death of Wealden council destroying what’s left of our green spaces. We have had FOUR years of roadworks on Rattle Road because of the constant development and the nightmare keeps on going. If as you say you can’t stop...

Answer: Dear Mr Moore. I am sorry to learn of your continuing frustration caused by the road works on Rattle Road. There has been a series of developments taking place in the area and no doubt each development causes localised issues, including noise and disturbance.  It is extremely difficult for the Council to refuse planning permission on...

Downlands Farm

18 February 2021

Question: Hi Bob, I am very concerned about the proposed plan for 500 homes being built at Downlands Farm, Uckfield. Can you tell me where you stand on it please? Steve Simons  

Answer: Dear Steve Simons Thank you for the question with regard to any proposed development at Downlands Farm. An application is expected on this site and once received it will assessed before being discussed at Wealden’s Planning Committee North where a decision to approve or refuse will be taken. As with any planning application residents, the Town Council and other...

Direction of Travel consultation

27 January 2021

Question: How much was this publicised? Look at comments received, before we even start on planning issues we are on the wrong foot as people already feel left out by poor notification. The amount of notice boards, Town Council access to residents, is poorly used. Nothing seems joined up? In residents’ eyes “Wealden” is one Council....

Answer: Dear Gill Noakes, Thank-you for getting in touch. The Direction of Travel consultation was publicised in line with our adopted Statement of Community Involvement (July 2020) This sets out how we will consult on Local Plan documents and also planning applications. The consultation was published on our website. We sent out 2,690 emails and 2,014...

Bicycle stands at the South Road car park in Hailsham

13 January 2021

Question: Dear Mr Standley, We were interested to know what the hoops are that have just appeared at the entrance to the South Road car park in Hailsham? We assumed they are unlikely to be cycle racks as they are too far away from the centre of the town to be used and the recreation ground...

Answer: Dear Mr Spooner, The hoops you refer to are cycle stands. They have been installed through a Government scheme to encourage and improve opportunities to cycle in response to the Covid-19 pandemic. It is called the Emergency Active Travel Fund. As a result of the scheme, East Sussex has been awarded funding to install 40...

Car parking enforcement in Wealden

23 December 2020

Question: Dear Sir Following on from previous communications, the last of which was In March 2019, I would like to know if any enforcement of parking on double yellow lines, grass verges and full parking (all 4 wheels) on pavements has been moved on? In the past I have been told the usual in that the...

Answer: Dear Mr Terence Richings Thank you for your recent email on parking. At the time of your email, I had not had a meeting with Chief Inspector Henry but did so by Zoom on the 16th December. Given the impasse that has been in place for some time I was not expecting an instant solution but we...