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BCC leader: 'Why I'm accepting free tickets to Silverstone'
A COUNCIL boss has written an open letter ‘in a commitment to transparency’ to explain why he has accepted tickets to the British Grand Prix.
Cllr Martin Tett, leader of Buckinghamshire County Council, has accepted an invitation to the race at Silverstone in July.
He “thought long and hard” about the decision, but decided that in his role he should represent the council at the famous racing venue, which pumps millions of pounds into the Buckinghamshire economy.
Cllr Tett - who passed up a similar offer to attend the opening of the London Olympics - will make a donation to charity and declare the Silverstone trip in his hospitalities list.
His predecessor, Cllr David Shakespeare, was criticised in some quarters for enjoying an all expenses-paid trip to Silverstone in 2009, even though the trip was not paid for by BCC.
The open letter from Cllr Tett reads:
“I wanted readers to be aware that, in my capacity as Leader of Buckinghamshire County Council, I have received an invitation to attend the British Grand Prix at Silverstone in July.
“The invitation is from the Managing Director of Silverstone and is non transferable. I have thought long and hard about this and have decided to accept this specific invitation.
“Silverstone is one of Buckinghamshire’s major employers, generating millions of pounds for Buckinghamshire's economy, supporting local businesses and boosting tourism.
“The County Council also plays a significant part in agreeing and delivering the traffic management plans to ensure visitors can enter and exit the circuit as quickly and efficiency as possible.
“Some months ago, I was allocated tickets to the opening of the London 2012 Games. In that case I did not take up the offer.
“But as those tickets were transferable, I put them into the recent 'Olympic and Paralympic Big Ticket Giveaway’ that we ran in conjunction with our main local newspapers and radio stations.
“In accepting the Silverstone tickets, I have decided to make a separate donation to a local charity and the tickets will be declared in full accordance with our official procedures and our commitment to transparency.”