A ROW broke out between councillors over the protocol of holding a public meeting, with one councillor saying he would not break his promise to the public.

A public meeting was called on Friday, June 20 to discuss planning applications in Mill Lane, Monks Risborough and posters said it was called by Princes Risborough Town Council.

But Cllr Will Streule said he knew nothing about the meeting until he saw the posters and felt embarrassed when members of the public asked him about it and he did not know the details.

At the last monthly meeting he said he believes there should be a protocol in place, whereby councillors all know and agree to future public meetings.

Cllr Alan Turner said he called the meeting as the town council promised residents years ago that, if a planning application was put in to build on the Molins sports ground in Monks Risborough, a public meeting would be held.

Molins is planning to put in a planning application for 90 homes at the site in Mill Lane and in an entirely separate application, Gladman Developments want to build 210 homes on land off Mill Lane between Kingsmead and Crowbrook Road.

Cllr Turner said: "The meeting was as a result of a long standing promise to the people of Risborough several years ago that, should a proposal to develop on Molins comes forward, we would hold a public meeting.

"After the very lively debate that went on at the developer presentation on the proposal a couple or so weeks ago now I was reminded by members of the public of that promise."

The meeting, which John Bercow attended, was at The Princes Centre on Friday night and the hall was reportedly full.

Cllr Iain McLauchlan said he accepted a promise was made, but said there wasn't a time limit in which to hold that meeting, and other councillors should have been asked.

Cllr Turner said: "At the end of the day if I make a promise I keep it. I do not apologise for that whatsoever. Let the public decide."

Cllr Streule said: "That promise was made two and a half, three years ago. I fail to see the urgency."

But Cllr Turner said he was baffled by the objections and he could not understand why they were picking on "a petty little point of bureaucracy rather than the big issue."

Cllr Gary Hall said he agreed with Cllr Turner and added: "Monks Risborough is under siege from two very hostile applications. One of them particularly dangerous.

"A public meeting was called in response to this."

It was agreed to wait until the council clerk returned from holiday to discuss putting a protocol in place.