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In due course

Hmmm. I’m not a happy bunny.

I’m fed up with the tolls
On 7 March 2006 I emailed my MP David Cameron to ask him what he intends to do about the appalling queues of traffic caused by toll collection on the Swinford toll bridge, a vital river crossing over the Thames in his constituency.

I had an automated reply, so I emailed again on 13 March and again got an automated reply. I tried again on 14 March. You guessed it! Same automated reply. By now you’re probably wondering what that was. So here is it in all its fobbingoffness:
Thank you for your email to David Cameron.

David Cameron’s emails are checked throughout the day, however you may not receive an immediate response.

Please bear with us as we have been inundated with correspondence since David Cameron became Leader – however, rest assured you will receive a response in due course.

Once again thank you for taking the time to write.
Correspondence Unit, David Cameron’s Office

What does ‘in due course’ mean? Later I emailed again, copying the West Oxfordshire Conservatives, asking for an appointment with Mr Cameron at his constituency surgery in May. To this I got no reply at all.

What a fool I have been! I thought I had an elected representative in Parliament. So a big-up ‘hurrah!’ for local councillor David Rossiter who has been far more helpful. He will raise the problem of the toll bridge at a council meeting later this week. I look forward to finding out more about the discussions.

Today I spoke to a journalist and tomorrow morning I shall have my photo taken at the bridge for piece in the local paper on Wednesday. It seems I may have succeeded in getting the toll bridge back in the public debate again.

I have been so busy with preparations for my forthcoming exhibition I haven’t had the time or energy to devote to my online petition to scrap the tolls which you can sign here. If you hate senseless time wasting, traffic jams and pollution you’ll be happy to sign it.

I leave you with these thoughts:

  • is it not a bit rich of David Cameron to wave the Political Environmental Flag in public while at the same time ignore the appalling air pollution caused unnecessarily every morning in his constituency by the idling engines of thousands of cars as they queue to pay their measly 5p toll?
  • David Cameron is obviously a busy man! Seven weeks since I first emailed him, I have no satisfactory reply, no appointment in my diary to meet him to discuss the problem. And I’m a busy woman. I don’t have time to waste waiting for replies ‘in due course’ or sitting in needless queues of traffic every morning.

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