The Campaign For Action in Rye ( CFAiR) is up and running, light on its toes, unhindered by too much hierarchy and open to anyone over the age of 16 who either lives, works or studies in Rye and Rye’s surrounding area…. and the organisation is asking questions. A constitution has been agreed and a secretary, Tracy Dighton, and membership secretary, Rosemary Boucherat, have been appointed. The chairman will rotate from meeting to meeting and a spokesman will be appointed as necessary.
It is CFAiR’s intention to keep everyone informed of what is going right or wrong in our Town Council, Rother District Council and East Sussex County Council – and indeed local health authorities. In other words, CFAiR will hope to scrutinize anyone responsible for our infrastructure and quality of life, together with any organization using public money.
Spokesman Heidi Foster said: “I’m delighted that this new community action group has now taken shape. We hope to play a constructive role in enhancing the town of Rye, helping improve the town and facilitating all ages in making an active contribution. We have therefore set our membership age at 16 years rather than voting age to encourage young people to take an active part in public life in Rye”.
Concern was expressed at this first meeting that the 999 year lease of the planned community centre at Tilling Green would be held by the Rye Partnership. Most people present thought that a community asset should belong or be answerable directly to Rye’s elected Town Council. CFAiR will ask that this issue be fully debated by the new council along with addressing the danger that during the period of up to 18 months for demolishing the former school, now used as a community centre, and the construction of a new centre, there will be no community facilities available.
The campaign plans to undertake its own improvement tasks, working in conjunction with the Town Council and any other relevant body. One immediate priority identified is the town cemetery, neglected for far too long.
CFAiR noted its strong support of the Neighbourhood Plan and will ask the Town Council to make available a simplified version of the draft plan, that can then be explained and discussed at a public meeting. The group will meet every third Thursday of the month at 7pm (next meeting June 18), venue to be confirmed.
Membership Secretary Rosemary Boucherat said: “We have a lot of people in Rye wanting to make it a better place to live and so this group will be really useful in helping to organise that. We want to mix traditional volunteering with more modern methods. We are moving into the digital age and can be found on Facebook and Twitter”.
John Howlett is a member of CFAiR