The shepherd always tries to persuade the sheep that their interest and his are the same. Substitute hers for his and there you have the summary of what happened at Tuesday’s Council meeting. The Tory lambs returned to the fold so the council leader comfortably won the vote of confidence. I am reminded of the proverb “Who makes himself a sheep will be eaten by the wolves”.

The council agenda was packed with loads of goodies. In addition to my vote of confidence, there were heavy weight items, including Members’ Allowances, London underground ticket office closures, Henly’s corner traffic scheme, NHS reforms, abolition of the Audit Commission and cuts to pensioners’ benefits. There was a fair turn out in the public gallery. I believe quite a few members of the public were barred from access to the Town Hall. That is another story for another time.

Fast forward twenty four hours to the monthly meeting of the Finchley and Golders Green Planning Sub Committee. It was a short agenda and seemed pretty run of the mill to me. The committee room was packed out. I estimated more of the public there than attended the Council Meeting. What had attracted all the attention? It was yet another planning application for six residential units in Court House Gardens N3.When the committee again refused this application it was greeted with a roar worthy of a winning goal at The Cup final.

Draw your own conclusions