Talk to each other
‘I think it sad that one of the town’s traders should choose to publicly attack the new Chairman of the Exmouth Chamber of Trade and Commerce, as occurred in the letter pages of the Journal.
Having occupied that position myself, many years ago, I can tell you that trying to run your own business and make a living, whilst at the same time chairing the town’s trade body is a thankless task.
There is no financial remuneration and the chairman’s only reward is knowing that he or she has done his or her best for the town and fellow traders.
The chamber always did, and I presume still does, operate an ‘open door’ policy, so would it not be very much simpler for a complainant to “walk through the chairman’s door” than to expect Mr Macqueen, the new chairman, to give up even more of his personal time to “walk through the door” of every trader in Exmouth? Mr Macqueen’s comment was, arguably , ill-advised in drawing attention to non-contributors, but he is new to the chairmanship and will make mistakes as he learns the ropes. Surely, as a fellow trader and member - I assume the complainer is a member, as to trade in a town and not support the local trade body is verging on reprehensible.
It would have been kinder and be less likely to do harm to the image of trade in this town for your letter writer to speak personally with his chairman.
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On the subject of the town’s Christmas illuminations, I have always maintained that, like the town’s flower displays, they are for the populace as a whole and any direct benefit to the town’s traders is immeasurably small.
Having said that, most traders have supported, and no doubt will continue supporting, the Christmas illuminations but, from personal experience, it is desperately hard work and time consuming extracting the cash!
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I would like to point out that I am now retired, no longer actively involved with the Exmouth Chamber of Trade and Commerce and have yet to meet Mr Macqueen, but I do not like to see injustice.
Perhaps the two gentlemen would like to meet and offer mutual apologies, but not through the columns of our local paper - please.