The people of Whitton had the chance to grill the leader of Richmond Council and fellow cabinet members last week.

Lord True was part of a five-man panel who fielded questions at Twickenham Academy on Thursday, March 13.

Joining him was Councillor Paul Hodgins, cabinet member for education, Councillor Pamela Fleming, cabinet member for environment, Councillor Chris Harrison, cabinet member for highways and streetscene, and Councillor Gareth Evans, cabinet member for community and business.

One of the first questions the leader faced was from a resident directly affected by the ongoing battle to change the postcode of some Whitton roads, currently in Hounslow.

Lord True said: “Where I live and represent in East Sheen, there is part of the ward that has a postal address in Richmond which would like to be Sheen so I completely understand that.

“The problem is, as you know, that it is not something that the council determines and is entirely in the hands of Royal Mail.

“But I do know it is a very longstanding issue and under successive councils under several political persuasions there has been a campaign for change.”

Speaking on the subject of betting shops on the high street, Lord True said he was making representation to Government for powers to regulate and control them.

He added: “These gambling firms and betting shops are going through, not only Whitton high street, but right across London, seeking outlets where they can actually make money.

“I think it is particularly sinister when they crop up near pubs, frankly.”

He went on to praise the turnouts of the meeting, as well as the previous week’s event in Kew, describing it as “direct democracy in action”.

He said: “I was very pleased to see so many people turn out to the events we held in Kew and Whitton and Heathfield, it shows very clearly how much people care about their local area and how keen they are to make sure their voice is heard when it comes to shaping their future.

“My colleagues and I have made a note of all the issues raised at both meetings, will be working with officers to look in to them and will feed back to residents at a later date.”

A recording of the event is available in its entirety at