Dear Sir

In answer to Cllr Chandrans letter in the retro 1970’s edition of the Newton News last week, referring to his views on the issue of the complete lack of female representation in leadership roles at the town council. I would like to express that I empathize with his feelings on the removal of the ‘Mrs/Miss’ prefix from some of the female Councillors names (thus removing the discrimination as there no ‘Mr’ prefix on the names of their male counterparts). As a woman, I know myself it’s very confusing not to know the marital status of those around me, why, sometimes I find it hard to leave the house not knowing if the men I will encounter are married or not. However, I am sure if he rings the council offices they will inform him which of his female counterparts are married or unmarried to avoid any confusion.

As to the female Councillors bringing up the issue of lack of representation in local councils, as identified in the recent ‘Fawcett report July 2017’ which lists the problems women face in local government and provides some of the recommendations that I would have liked the town council to consider, I refer Cllr Chandrun to this report for the answers to his questions.

Perhaps Cllr Chandran would like to propose the building of a ducking stool beside the boating lake, so if any of the ‘feminist anti-men’ population of Aycliffe were to get the dangerous and radical idea of questioning their representation or looking at inequality within the local political systems, they can be cured of such rebellious thinking by being given a damn good ducking? I’m sure he would get the motion passed.

To answer his question as to why women have not put themselves forward. By bringing the issue to the attention of the council it was this very question we hoped would be explored, but perhaps when our male Independent counterpart dismisses us as being ‘anti-men feminists’ for simply asking questions, I think he has demonstrated the answer himself by making such an offensive comment.

Should anyone wish to read the July 2017 Fawcett report into inequality within local government, a link can be found on my facebook page, or alternatively contact Cllr Chandran who I’m sure would be happy to mansplain it to you.

Kathryn Beetham (unmarried, open to offers)