One-Way Petition


In a nutshell:  Petition started in October 2017 in response, as described in the Petition overview, to what was widely perceived as a very poor RCC effort to brief Rutlanders about the proposed One-Way system, not involving the vast majority of the 38,000 strong Rutland Electorate.  The online version reached 500 signatures within the first month and 1000 a month later.  By the time the Petition was handed in (14th December 2017) it had reached over 3100 signatures including those received on hard-copy petition forms signed in shops and at street markets.  Today it stands at 3157 or which more than 2700 are Rutlanders and, of those, over 1500 are Oakham Residents.


Petition Updates

23rd February 2018

Rutland County Council, with its new Leader, Oliver Hemsley, who started his tenure with a post-election promise that Rutland County Council, under his watch would be ‘better at listening and learning, would be more open and transparent about its work and would connect better with the communities that it served;’  had the opportunity last Thursday evening to address the lack of trust that it appears its electorate has in it.  Instead, it was made clear that nothing had changed after all.  Democracy had been silenced again.  The new era of ‘Openness and Trust’ had lasted just over a week.  Shame.

It looked good on paper.  All Councillors except those in Cabinet could register their interest in serving on the Task & Finish Group of which six would be selected, which, on first sight, seemed reasonable and they would be complemented by four non-Council members;  one Oakham Town Council member, one Oakham Town Partnership member, one Oakham Neighbourhood Plan member and one Resident.   Eleven Councillors registered their interest – almost double the number needed.  They would each be given the opportunity to make representations regarding their suitability to sit on the group. The Scrutiny Panel would then decide which of the members would take a place on the Task and Finish Group based on those representations.  Democracy in action!

The audience shuffled in and took their places.  The Chairman tinkered with his microphone and cleared his throat.  Lights!  Action!  Let the play-acting begin!!!  Because there was already the distinct smell of a rat in the room.  Of the eleven Councillors who’d purported to stand for the high office of Task & Finish Group member, five were missing!  Messrs Cross, Conde, Dale, Stewart and Fox were missing in action!  Absent without leave.  Caetera desunt! The door blew open again and Councillor June Fox slipped in like a naughty schoolgirl late for roll-call.  Make that four MIAs.

Fast forward to Agenda Item 7 and with no further ado, the Chairman announced that ‘it had been decided’ that the six Councillor members of the Task & Finish Group would be the six of the seven Oakham Councillors that were not Cabinet Members (that just ruled out Cllr Walters).  They would be Cllrs Bird, Callaghan, Clifton, Dale, Gale and Mann).  And that’s where RCC’s brief attempt at openness, transparency, listening to the people and democracy died.  As soon as the words, ‘it had been decided’ were uttered, we, the members of the public sitting in the wings, knew that nothing had changed after all.  No representations to assess WHO the best might be.  That would be leaving too much to trust.  Same old faces, the old guard firmly in place.

And, as usual with RCC there was a further wrinkle.  A big grey wrinkly elephant in the room that everyone sitting around the table was conscientiously ignoring.  This decision would be voted on by, and only by, members of the Scrutiny Panel.  Which included Messrs Bird, Mann and Clifton (standing in for Cllr Cross).  This wasn’t so much turkeys voting for Christmas as turkeys voting to be the ones sitting around the table eating Christmas dinner.  But, ho ho ho, this is Rutland we’re talking about.  Nothing to see here folks, move on please.

Now comes the need to throw a bone to the dogs.  To give a thumbs up to the gladiator waiting nervously on the blood-spattered ampitheatre floor.  Cue Councillor Emperor of Rutland, Edwardius Bainus.  ‘I think,’ he opined gravely, ‘that no-one would disagree with me if we were to ask Mr Tim Norton to accept the tenth position.’  Pause for wild applause from the audience…  Silence! Treacherous curs!  They seem to be mumbling ‘what about the Resident?’ instead of acknowledging this magnificent magnanimity.

But wait.  The show wasn’t over yet.  With acting skills that would have earned him a BAFTA if Cllr Bird had decided to strut the boards rather than enter local government, the aforementioned gentleman announced that it ‘could be perceived’ (presumably by all those ungrateful naughty Rutland Council Tax payers who’d lost faith in the Council), that he was ‘involved in too many related activities’.  One assumes he meant, Member of the T&F Group, Member of the Scrutiny Panel assessing the work of the T&F Group as well as Chairman of the Oakham Town Partnership that would be represented in the T&F Group.  The elephant had just grown just a little bit too large for the room.  Tears in his eyes, he explained that he’d have no choice but to stand down.  ‘Luckily enough’, said the Chairman.  ‘Cllr June Fox’, (she who’d slipped in late), ‘would be willing to take that place’.  Such luck that she’d turned up!  And no need for one of those tedious ‘representations about why she would be the right person for the job because, after all, none of the other five members had had to give one either!  ‘Non-Oakham’ Councillor box ticked.  Female Councillor box ticked.  Job done.

What does this mean for the Task & Finish Group per se and for the vexatious question over the One-Way proposal which caused over three thousand local residents to sign the petition and some hundreds of them to march on Catmose on 14th December 2017?  Well, that very much depends on who is selected for the OTC, OTP and ONP slots.  Three of the rather non-democratically selected Councillors are believed to opposed to the One-Way, one is reported to be a noted fence-sitter much like our own dear MP, one is a thought to be a One-Way proponent and the last is a turkey voter, One-Way position unknown.  Will Tim Norton be a lone voice, crying in the wilderness, or will the ‘power of three’ come to his aid.  And then who will hold the tipping balance?  Surely not OTP who are already on record supporting one-way for Oakham, albeit in the opposite direction.  Or OTC, whose leader is reported to also be a passionate One-Way supporter.  Perhaps Oakham Neighbourhood Partnership who, after all, when they asked that question of the good people of Oakham and Barleythorpe during their Big Survey found that less than half were in favour of the One-Way?  There again, their Chairman, the Oakham SE Conservative hopeful, Chris Clark is likely to do what he’s told because….  That’s what they do…

Watch this space…..

Gerry Robinson started this campaign on the 38 Degrees Campaigns by You website. If there’s an issue close to your heart that you’d like to campaign on, you can start your campaign here.


14th February 2018

Just a short reminder that the Councillors who will serve on the Task & Finish Group will be selected at the Growth, Infrastructure and Resources Scrutiny Panel this Thursday evening.  This is a public meeting, starting at 7pm and I hope that as many of you as possible will be able to attend to see this first step in addressing the Oakham regeneration issue.  Link to meeting agenda here:

The T&F Group will comprise six Councillors, and one member each from Oakham Town Council, Oakham Town Partnership, Oakham Neighbourhood Plan and one Resident.  There will also be an independent, non-voting Chair.  Councillors registering an interest are Cllrs Bird, Burkitt, Callaghan, Clifton, Conde, Cross, Dale, Fox, Gale, Mann and Stewart.  Each Councillor will be  invited to make representations regarding their suitability to sit on the group. The Scrutiny Panel will then decide which of the members will take a place on the Task and Finish Group.  Link to the Scrutiny Panel report outlining the process and the timetable going forward here:

2700 Rutlanders signed the Petition which was presented at the end of last year – 1500 from Oakham alone.  We need to show RCC that we’re determined to see the best outcome for our town and impress upon them that the T&F Group really does, what it is claimed to do, look at the whole plan for Oakham from first principles and come up with a solution that is best for all residents, traders and visitors.  That, in short, it doesn’t become just a sop to public opinion.  People power is the way to achieve this and that’s why I’m hoping for at least a good attendance on Thursday as we had on January 15th!

See you there!

Gerry Robinson

Gerry Robinson started this campaign on the 38 Degrees Campaigns by You website. If there’s an issue close to your heart that you’d like to campaign on, you can start your campaign here.

5th February 2018

Now that the dust has settled following the presentation of the Petition to Rutland County Council, it is time to give you a brief update accordingly.

The Petition was formally presented to a packed Council Chamber at the Full Council Meeting on Monday, 15th January 2018.  You can find a video of the presentation itself and the ensuing Q & A session here:  (Video 1 – 35 minutes in).

If you were at that meeting, or read through the minutes carefully, you will note that the Councillors side-stepped the thorny issue of having to vote directly to support or deny the Petition as worded – to quote from the minutes themselves:  The formal response to the petition as presented to Council this evening will be that the Council will ask the Growth, Infrastructure and Resources Scrutiny Panel to convene a Task and Finish Group to consider the future of Oakham Town.  This motion was seconded by Mr Brown. RESOLVED

Meeting Minutes link here:

So what this boils down to is that whether the One-Way goes ahead or not, as part of the Oakham Regeneration plan, is entirely down to the Task and Finish Group.  OK2WAY have already been in contact with RCC regarding the composition of that group and the latest information from Oliver Hemsley, Interim Leader, is that it will comprise:

– 6 RCC Elected Members (not Cabinet members)

– A representative of Oakham Town Council

– A representative of Oakham Town Partnership

– A representative of the Neighbourhood plan working group

– Residents / Business representative

OK2WAY are currently not satisfied with this arrangement firstly because several of the bodies mentioned above actually overlap and secondly because there is only one slot for Oakham Residents / Businesses whereas we feel that there should be at least one residents representative and one business representative.  We have notified the Council accordingly and await to hear their response.

The final decision regarding the composition of the Task & Finish Group will be made at the Growth, Infrastructure and Resources Scrutiny Panel meeting at 7pm on the 15th February and I would urge as many of you as possible to attend.  The agenda should be published seven days before at this link:

Finally, separately to OK2WAY, an Oakham Residents group is being set up to lobby RCC specifically on the One-Way system and the effect on Oakham residents and the organiser has asked me to pass the following communication on to you if you would like to be involved / informed accordingly:

Thank you for your support to date.

Gerry Robinson

Gerry Robinson started this campaign on the 38 Degrees Campaigns by You website. If there’s an issue close to your heart that you’d like to campaign on, you can start your campaign here.



12th January 2018

This short briefing was originally intended to inform you that Rutland County Council had accepted the Petition which was handed in following the Protest March on 14th December 2017,  as meeting their criteria to be debated by the Full Council and that that Council Meeting would take place next Monday, 15th January at 7pm.  And also, to request that as many of you as possible attend the meeting to impress upon the Councillors the strength of feeling regarding the One-Way proposal.  I feel sure that the numbers of people that turned up on the 14th December gave that message and it should be reinforced at the Council Meeting.

They say that a lot can happen in a week, in politics and locally it seems that a lot has happened in two days which has changed the whole situation, drastically.  On Monday, Rutland County Council announced that Tony Mathias, Council Leader, and, I understand, main proponent of the One-Way scheme had resigned with immediate effect, with his resignation statement including the line that he’d ‘been aware of just how challenging it can be to champion projects that I strongly feel are right for our county but which have not garnered support from the wider community’.  You can find the full announcement from RCC here: Hot on the heels of that, yesterday morning, RCC announced that the whole One-Way proposal was being ‘put on hold in the short term’.  Announcement here:

What this means with respect to the meeting next Monday, I don’t yet know however, Tim Norton and myself have a meeting with Helen Briggs RCC CEO and the interim Council Leader, Oliver Helmsley, on Friday, 12th January and I will address that point there.  However, it remains the case that the need to ensure that RCC listens to it’s voters and Council Tax payers is as strong as ever, as shown by the response to the Petition and the work now being done by the OK2WAY Campaign Group and that will be key as the important work to regenerate and rejuvenate our County Town is finally agreed upon and undertaken.


Gerry Robinson

Gerry Robinson started this campaign on the 38 Degrees Campaigns by You website. If there’s an issue close to your heart that you’d like to campaign on, you can start your campaign here.



19th December 2017

Just a quick note to thank everyone who turned up on Thursday to join the Protest March and Petition Hand-In.  I’m not sure of the exact number but the media had it as ‘several hundred’ as you can see from the links below.  Suffice it to say that as the vanguard of the March reached Catmose, the column was still crossing Stamford Road…

Talking about the media, we had extremely good coverage.  Not only did Rutland Radio mention the Petition in their news slots all day on Thursday and sent Rob down to cover the event, the Rutland & Stamford Mercury sent a journalist and a photographer along (full spread in next week’s paper), BBC Radio Leicester carried an interview with me the following morning and of course Tony Roe, BBC East Midlands Today was there, carrying out interviews and filming the whole event and this story should be on EMT within the next few days.

What’s Next?

Now that the Petition has been formally handed in, and receipted, the focus switches to the main OK2WAY Campaign chaired by Tim Norton.  As agreed with Tim, I will keep the petition running in the background right up to the final Council meeting, in March 2018, at which the final decision about the One-Way proposal will be made.  This is because signatures are still arriving (50 already since Thursday), meaning that a supplementary petition will be handed in, in March but also to serve as a communications channel between OK2WAY and you, the supporters.  OK2WAY have a number of events, street stalls etc planned over the coming four months – the next big event will be a Public Meeting in an Oakham venue, in early February 2018 and full details of this will follow once the plans are firmed up.

Thank you again for your support.

Gerry Robinson

Gerry Robinson started this campaign on the 38 Degrees Campaigns by You website. If there’s an issue close to your heart that you’d like to campaign on, you can start your campaign here.


14th December 2017

Todays’s the big day!  Tim Norton, Chairman of OK2WAY and myself, will be handing in the Petition to Rutland County Council.

The timeline for the Hand In is as follows:

15:30:  All Supporters meet at Oakham Market Square.

15:45:  Set off for the Council Offices, marching up the High Street, crossing Burley Road and Stamford Road on the way, (please exercise care in crossing these busy roads).

16:00:  Arrive at Rutland County Council Offices in Catmose where Tim Norton and I will hand in the Petition which I expect will contain over 3000 signatures by then.

Local Media and the BBC are expected to be in attendance and Rutland Police have been notified of this march in accordance with Government guidelines.


Gerry Robinson

Gerry Robinson started this campaign on the 38 Degrees Campaigns by You website. If there’s an issue close to your heart that you’d like to campaign on, you can start your campaign here.


8th December 2017

As we enter the final week of the petition before handover next Thursday, with well over 2,400 signatures, including hard copy forms, (2200 from Rutland and 1200 from Oakham alone), I have a few important points to brief you on:

Hand Over

Hand over has been confirmed with Rutland County Council to be at 16:00 on Thursday 14th December.  It was decided last night that we will meet at the Market Square at 15:30 and march down to the Council Offices together.  This may well be the first protest march that Oakham has seen in a very long time and I received confirmation last night that the BBC will be there to film it…  So please, be there and show your support!


A formal protest group to run the wider campaign of which this petition forms a part has been formed.  OK2WAY will be chaired by Tim Norton of Tim Norton Motors and will plan and coordinate all activities from now until the final RCC Council Meeting regarding the One-Way proposal in March 2018.  The media, all local papers, local radio and the BBC have been briefed accordingly.


OK2WAY will hold their first Street Stall, in Oakham Market Square, this Saturday, 9th December, from 09:00 till 13:00.  Please come along and support us.  There will be hard copy petition forms to sign if you have friends / family who haven’t signed yet and bright One Way / No Way leaflets which you can display to show your support.  We hope to see you there tomorrow.

With 300+ supporters in each Oakham Ward and another thousand elsewhere in Rutland, I believe that the Councillors and our MP are beginning to really feel the pressure – So, let’s keep it up!  Useful Contacts / Links beneath my signature as usual

Thank you for your support

Gerry Robinson

 Useful Links

The petition itself :                     

Sir Alan Duncan email:             

Contact Your Councillor:          

Have Your Say Leaflets:             

Hard Copy Petition Forms:       

Gerry Robinson started this campaign on the 38 Degrees Campaigns by You website. If there’s an issue close to your heart that you’d like to campaign on, you can start your campaign here.

27th November 2017

Just a quick note with three important updates.

1.    First and foremost, due to the large amount of signatures still coming in, especially those on the hard-copy petition forms that many local businesses are now holding (and I was out distributing more forms on Saturday), I have decided to postpone the handover date by two weeks and now plan to hand this petition in on Thursday, 14th December.  Please note this date in your diary as we’re hoping for a good turn-out on that day.  This gives an extra two weeks to enable as many local people as possible to have their say, so please keep sharing during this additional period.

1.    One of our most active supporters has given me feedback that many letters / emails to Councillors are just being ignored and advises that all such correspondence should be cover-copied to Rutland County Council’s CEO at

2.    Another supporter has complained that the feedback forms which were available next to the Library ‘Exhibition’ have disappeared and that it’s now necessary to see library staff to be given one. Although not specifically designed for the purpose, it seems that many have been using these forms to inform RCC of their opinion of the planned one-way system.  Please find a link to a downloadable copy here:

3.    Quick Numbers Update

1.    Total Signatures including hard-copy Petition Forms today:  2153

2.    Total in LE15:  1884

3.    Total in Oakham alone:  1002

Thank you

Gerry Robinson

Useful Links

The petition itself :                     

Sir Alan Duncan email:             

Contact Your Councillor:        

Rutland Radio Newsdesk:      

Rutland Radio Lead Presenter:

Have Your Say Leaflets:        

Hard Copy Petition Forms:     

Gerry Robinson started this campaign on the 38 Degrees Campaigns by You website. If there’s an issue close to your heart that you’d like to campaign on, you can start your campaign here.

24th November 2017

On Wednesday, as we entered the final live week of the petition, we also passed another important milestone when we reached 2000 signatures online!  In reality, the situation is even more positive than that, as this figure does not take into account supporters who have signed the hard-copy petitions available in many local businesses and which have just started arriving here in Burley for collating with the main petition.  As I write, the true total is now 2065 signatures and I am confident that by the time I hand the petition in, we will have well over 2100;  three times the number of people that signed the first petition, three times the number of people that thought the one-way system was a good idea during the Council’s second consultative exercise, (four times the number that voted for Option A in the first) and a number larger than most of Rutland’s Electoral Wards.  Today, close to a thousand people living in Oakham alone have signed the petition.  This is a great result!  Thank you and let’s keep signing and sharing for this final week.  Ask your friends.  Share on FaceBook.  Tweet on Twitter!

Trader Survey Report

Two of our supporters were very busy during the period 7th – 14th November, surveying local traders on the High Street, Market Square/Street and Mill Street.  Proprietors / Business owners were invited to comment on the proposed one-way traffic system, whether they were for or against a one-way system and, if against, how strong was their objection on a rating of 1-5 with 5 being the strongest objection.  The full report can be found at this link:  but to summarise:  54 Traders responded in total of which 49 were opposed, 3 were neutral and only 2 supported the one-way proposal with a grand total of 41 of that 49 being ‘strongly opposed’.  That’s almost 91% of local Traders surveyed, with businesses on the roads directly affected by the proposed one-way system, who are completely and utterly opposed to it.


I believe that the message about the strength and depth of feeling about this ill-conceived plan is finally beginning to get through.  It can be no coincidence that our MP has felt the need to write a piece in the local paper last week and then to record a piece for Rutland Radio (although, as far as I could make out his view seemed to be that the most important thing was ‘how it looked’ which is somewhat missing the point about the one-way system’s effect on trade).  Conversely, Rutland Radio are still not reporting on the petition, despite it’s four-fold increase in signatories, since their last report on the 25th October.  I have, in the last few days, sent them a full report and would hope that they will redress this imbalance soon.

The Final Countdown

So, in the final week, please keep the pressure up.  Keep signing and sharing.  Keep writing to our MP and your councillor (useful links at the end of this message), keep returning the scanned hard copy petition forms to . If you live in one of the very few villages with only a few signatures (Ayston, Barrow, Clipsham, Glaston, Gunthorpe, Pilton, Thistleton and Thorpe-by-Water), consider discussing the petition with your neighbours and/or print out and deliver the One Way / No Way leaflets and…  visit the Councils own web and FB pages on the planned scheme to, like many others, add your comments there and please…..  watch this space!

Thank you

Gerry Robinson


Gerry Robinson started this campaign on the 38 Degrees Campaigns by You website. If there’s an issue close to your heart that you’d like to campaign on, you can start your campaign here.


17th November 2017

You may have seen a piece from our MP, Sir Alan Duncan, in today’s Rutland Times.  If not, you can read it on my FB Page by following this link:

As he says in his penultimate paragraph, many of us ‘have concerns to which we have not had a satisfactory response from the Council’ (eg – why is this scheme apparently being forced upon us in the teeth of such opposition – Where is the NO One-Way option etc) and he promises to take this up with Helen Briggs on the 4th December.

Therefore, if you have not already done so (and I know that many have – hence the piece in the paper), then please email Sir Alan at and let him know your views.

Thank you to all of you who have already been busy writing, leafleting and generally supporting this campaign

Gerry Robinson

You are receiving this message because you signed the petition “Local Referendum on Oakham One-Way Scheme“. If you don’t want to receive emails from the “Local Referendum on Oakham One-Way Scheme” campaign in the future, please unsubscribe.


Tuesday, 14th November 2017

Mid-Month Update – Local Referendum on Oakham One-Way Scheme

Since I last issued an update, the number of signatories to the petition  has increased by another fifty percent – growing from 1200 plus signatures last Monday to over 1800 today. And of these, over 1600 are from the LE15 area, the postcode area centered on Oakham, a figure well over the total number of respondents to the Councils ‘consultation exercise’ from which, as I am sure you will remember, they got just 710 votes in favour of Option A – the One-Way scheme.

With so many new signatories, I have appended at the foot of this mail the two previous communications so, if required, you can scroll through at your leisure.  To recap on the previous points raised last Monday.


I can see that my previous message about ensuring that everybody in your household that supports this petition signs it separately has been heeded by the extra signatures that have come in that fit that criteria – thank you for that.  A reminder that petition forms, for those without access to the internet, can be downloaded at the link in my previous update – beneath this mail – and scanned and emailed to me at or posted back to my home address, also listed there.


Again, I can see that leafleting has been taking place and there are some areas that are very well represented in the petition now and this must be as a result of that.  For example, Braunston, Brooke,  Burley and Tyne Roads in Oakham, Wheatfield Way in Barleythorpe and other examples in villages across Rutland.  I’ve personally delivered leaflets to supporters who have covered High St and Crown Walk, Lonsborough Gardens, Langham generally and parts of the ‘equine’ estate and I know that Mill St and the Market Square have been similarly covered.  What I would like to turn attention to now is those post codes without such good coverage – eg LE15 7ND – Bowling Green Close to take one example at random.  So, if you’ve already covered your own road and are willing to walk just a bit further and do one of the less well-represented ones then just email me and I will let you know those close to your home address.

The ONE WAY / NO WAY / HAVE YOUR SAY leaflets can be downloaded ready for printing from this link (two leaflets per A4 sheet) for the pdf version and for a powerpoint version instead, or you can ask me to print some and drop off for you of course.

 Letter Writing & Social Media

Please keep writing to our MP, Sir Alan Duncan, and your own Councillor  The more individual contacts these ladies and gentlemen have from all of us the more they are forced to realise both the strength and the depth of local opinion regarding the planned One-Way scheme.   Social Media is a great way to share the petition link as well.  You’ll see regular updates from me on my FB pages and the more shares we get the better, so please spread the message.  I don’t have a Twitter account but would ask those that do to ‘tweet’ the petition link as well.

Local Media

The One-Way scheme has filled the letters pages in the two local papers for over a month now with very few pro-scheme letters and many excellent and well-thought out criticisms of the way this is being pursued by Rutland County Council especially in view of those areas locally which such a huge sum of money as £3.5m would be better spent on – Rutland Memorial, Oakham Medical Centre, threats to reduce local emergency services, social care provision with the growing elderly population in Rutland – to name just a few.  Let’s keep them coming and if you know the correspondents, please ensure that they have signed the petition too.  I’ve had less luck with Rutland Radio and their parent company, Lincs FM, although they did feature the petition back on the 25th October when it was “over 500 signatures”, link here .  We’ve almost quadrupled that figure now but they seem reluctant to cover the petition again, the person I contacted telling me that ‘as the Council hadn’t commented on the petition – neither could they’, which seems a strange position for a supposedly apolitical, commercial, local radio station to take, especially in view of the extensive reporting they’ve given today to the start of the Library Exhibition of the ‘Oakham Regeneration (One-Way) plan and to Tony Mathias’s interview in favour of it.  If, like me, you feel that this is not balanced reporting then please write to their lead DJ, Rob Persani, or their newsdesk, and tell them so.

Street Stall / Protest March etc

At the moment and certainly since my last update, I’m seeing very little appetite for this kind of activity and so there are no plans to do anything of this nature, at present, unless I receive a strong swell of opinion in favour.  However, I do hope that as many of you as possible will be able to turn up for the hand-over of the petition – exact timing to be announced later and I hope that local media will cover that too.


Once again, thank you for your support and suggestions to date.  Let’s keep up the pressure, keep up the leafleting, the collecting of signatures and let’s show Rutland County Council that we’re serious, we mean business and we don’t intend to see our local town turned into a ghost town because of some very poorly thought through local government decision-making.

Gerry Robinson


 Monday, 6th November 2017

Petition Update and the Way Forward

It’s hard to believe that it’s not been much more than a week since this petition was launched and we are already at over 1200 signatures.  (1255 at the time of writing to be exact).  Nearly twelve hundred of those lie within the LE area and 1100 of that total within LE15, the post code area centred on Oakham itself and basically comprising the Rutland county area.  That’s well over a thousand local people, people who work, live, shop and socialise in Oakham, demanding a voice in the future of their own town and getting close to double the amount that voted in the previous petition or who responded positively to the Council’s own so-called ‘consultation’.

You’ll see my letter in this week’s local papers (copied at the foot of this mail) and I have used that to set the deadline for this petition as Thursday, 30th November  That is the day I plan to hand the full petition over in Catmose, hopefully directly to Tony Mathias, Council Leader and, again hopefully, with some media coverage.  This gives us four weeks from the date of this email to drive the petition to gain as many signatures as we possibly can.  My ideas on achieving this are:

1.    Signatures. Let’s make sure that with all existing signatories that wherever possible, everyone (in agreement) in the same household has separatelysigned the petition.  Change 38 seems to have a problem where couples sharing the same email address are only allowed to sign the petition once so separate email addresses should be used and I do appreciate that this is not always possible in every instance.  I’ve also been asked a few times about the process of getting signatures from those without ready access to the internet.  There are paper petition forms and you can download them here:  (Phone numbers not required).  Completed forms can be scanned and sent back to me at or posted to my home address:  Park Barn, Home Farm Close, Burley, Rutland LE15 7ST.

2.    Leafleting. Change 38 saves signatures on a postcode basis and this means I am able see the number of signatories in each postal code area.  So, when I last updated the table this morning at 1254 Signatures, I could quickly see that 1094 of those were in the LE15 area.  Drilling down further, 564 are in the LE15 6xx area,  248 in the LE15 7xx area etc etc.  From this I know that I have signatories in LE15 6AA (Church Street), LE15 6AE (Crown Street), LE15 7SA (Lonsborough Gardens, Langham) and LE15 9DY (Willoughby Road, Morcott) to take just a very few random examples.  Now, I’ve done a lot of political leafleting in the past and I personally don’t enjoy it one little bit but I’ve done it where I’ve passionately believed in the cause and where it’s been one way to get the message across.  So, I fully understand anyone and everyone who doesn’t want to leaflet but…. If just half of the people that have already signed the petition print off just ten leaflets and deliver them only in their local and neighbouring roads that’s 6000 potential new signees reached……  Deliver 20 and that’s suddenly 12000!  I’ll be making a start in the LE15 7ST area this weekend and I hope that many of you will consider doing the same in your own roads too.  Many thanks to the supporter who created the leaflet and who has already been out in Oakham town centre handing them out.  You can download it ready for printing from this link (two leaflets per A4 sheet) or you can ask me to print some and drop off for you of course.

3.    Letter Writing. Please write to your Councillor and to our MP and express your support for this petition.  I know from personal experience that letters, especially to Alan Duncan, often seem to receive nothing but a seemingly pro-forma response from Fraser Raleigh or another of his assistants but nevertheless it all sends a clear message that many many local voters are very very concerned about the proposed one-way system and RCCs high-handedness in forcing it through without proper consultation.  Write to Alan Duncan here: and find your Councillor here:

4.    Street Stalls. I’ve done Street Stalls in the past on Market Days in Oakham, Uppingham and Melton Mowbray and they can be very effective.  I know that there has also been discussion about a protest march and so I just open this up here to get some feedback on the appetite for one or two public events like these in November. Please write back and let me have your opinions / suggestions.

5.    Social Media. As you may have noticed, I’m regularly promoting the petition via my own FaceBook pages and would be very grateful if you could do the same.  Also, as I don’t ‘tweet’, if those supporters who have Twitter accounts could share via that medium that would also be very helpful in getting the word out.  Thank you in advance for that.

6.    Funding. I’m pleased to say – none required!   Except for some printer paper, ink and shoe leather.  This could be the cheapest campaign you’ve ever supported but also, locally, one of the most important.

Thank you again for all the support to date.  Let’s have a busy November driving this Campaign on together.

Gerry Robinson


Letter to Rutland Times / Rutland Mercury

Dear Sir

I would like to thank everyone who has, to date, signed the petition

At the time of writing the number of signatures has doubled since last week’s publication and is rapidly approaching the one thousand mark.  It’s worth highlighting that of these, nearly 90% are from the LE15 postal code area;  that area, centred on Oakham, stretching from Clipsham in the north-east to the Eye Reservoir in the south, from Withcote in the west to Great Casterton in the east.  In other words, pretty much the whole of Rutland.  If signatures from LE13 /14 / 16 are included, that figure rises to over 90%.  Over 900 local people, people that live in, work in, shop in and socialize in Oakham want RCC to involve them properly in the most important decision to affect their local town since the by-pass went in.  That’s significantly more than signed the previous petition and, importantly, far more than voted for the one-way system in the Council’s own rather selective poll.

I plan to keep this petition running on into November with various activities to gather as many signatures as possible before handing it in on Thursday, 30th November and I hope to hand it in, personally, to Tony Mathias, Council Leader, on that date.  I hope that our elected Councillors and our MP will listen to the strength of opinion locally that is being clearly demonstrated here and properly consult with their voters by means of a local referendum instead of simply ignoring their electorate and proceeding with their own plans regardless.

Gerry Robinson


Monday, 30th October 2017

Well on our way to 1000 Votes!

Just a very quick update as reported on my Facebook Page this morning  –  Please see the following link:

Also, many thanks to supporters who were out over the weekend leafleting in Oakham and visiting Oakham shops to ascertain / garner their support for the Petition.

A full report and my plans for the next phase will follow later this week.  As usual, all comments / suggestions are welcome.

Best wishes



Gerry Robinson started this campaign on the 38 Degrees Campaigns by You website. If there’s an issue close to your heart that you’d like to campaign on, you can start your campaign here.


26th October 2017

Just a quick note to thank you for your support to date.  And especially to the organisers and supporters of the previous petition on this issue – the sign-on rate multiplied four-fold after we made contact and, as you will note, has now climbed to over 600 in the space of less than a week.  That’s amazing!

Lincs FM, the parent company of Rutland Radio, included us in their early news round-ups yesterday and I hope to get at least one interview out of them.  I’m also hoping that the two local papers will publish my letter (included at the foot of this email in case they don’t) and hopefully that local media exposure will also drive up the signatures.  The good thing about 38 Degrees petitions is that they (only) show your name and your postcode which clearly demonstrates to RCC that it’s local people that are signing, local people who care about the future of their town and local people who will be voting in Councillors in the next couple of years.

For those who haven’t seen them – here’s some useful links.

RCC’s presentation on why they think that the one-way system is a good idea: (downloads as a pdf file)

(Personally I think this is a good example of comparing apples to oranges as Oakham does not have the same space, support infrastructure and transport network as places like Brighton.)

Meeting Minutes:

Public Report:

Thank you too to those who have contacted me separately with advice and offers of help.  Please keep up the good work and continue spreading the word by forwarding the link below to your friends, sharing on social media and simply by talking about the petition.  For my part, I’m currently working through a mailing list of Oakham local business, Meadows, Berridges etc etc and have started receiving signatures from them.

Thanks Again

Gerry Robinson

Letter To Local Papers

Dear Sir

There has been much correspondence in your pages recently regarding the controversial one-way scheme planned for Oakham.  It is obvious that many, myself included, regard it as an expensive waste of money that could be better spent elsewhere, bearing in mind the problems Oakham is having with its current rise in population, eg with the demands on the Medical Centre and that furthermore it will further damage the town’s viability as a traditional market town.

Also telling is the fact that RCC, as evidenced by Tony Mathias’s letter in both local papers last week, feel that a 53% poll in favour of the scheme is a good enough reason to proceed and one of your correspondents even went so far, as to imply that what was good enough for the Brexit Referendum should be good enough for Rutland residents.  The difference being of course, that the Brexit Referendum was held across the whole electorate and the 52% voting to Leave were 52% of a total turnout of over 72%.  A poll on the one-way system taken across just something like 18% of the whole Rutland electorate, and with a turn-out of 28% means that only 843 people out of all Rutland Voters have actually voted in favour of the one-way system…  This would be like asking only the people of Leicester to vote in the EU Referendum and then proceeding on the result of that vote…

The issue is so important locally that, at the very least, the whole local electorate should be given a chance to vote on it and to that end a Change 38 petition is now running which can be found by going to this link: or by looking on my Facebook page.  I hope that enough people will support this demand for direct democracy that RCC will give all Rutland voters the chance to have their say on the future of their town.

Gerry Robinson

Gerry Robinson started this campaign on the 38 Degrees Campaigns by You website. If there’s an issue close to your heart that you’d like to campaign on, you can start your campaign here.



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