Last week was a momentous time for both Cheshire Police and Cheshire East Council.

The gross misconduct inquiry into Simon Byrne, Cheshire’s chief constable, continued and was relayed on line as it happened by Guardian reporter Adam Everett.

It included some pretty strong accusations but nothing was withheld or redacted.

The press and public had unrestricted access to the proceedings.

Compare this,if you will, to Cheshire East Council whose new Investigation and Disciplinary Committee (IDC II) met for the first time at Macclesfield Town Hall.

As reported in the Guardian: “The ‘IDC II’ will meet at Macclesfield Town Hall from 10.30am on Friday, September 28.

“Conservative councillors Gary Barton, Janet Clowes, Hilda Gaddum and Les Gilbert will be in attendance, along with Cllr Steve Hogben, Labour; Cllr Derek Hough, Liberal Democrat; and Cllr Toni Fox, independent.

“An agenda published online for the meeting gives no clues on what the new IDC will discuss – with an unnamed report set to be discussed without press or the public present.

“No further details on the meeting are available which are not contained in the agenda – but there is a chance for the public to speak at the meeting before it is held in private.”

Quite how the public will ‘speak at the meeting’ on an agenda that ‘gives no clues on what the new IDC will discuss,’ is something of a mystery to all but the Tory Party leadership and Peppa Pig.

Residents can hardly turn up and discuss the mating habits of the giant panda or the defoliation of the equatorial rainforest.

So what the hell are the public supposed to discuss with the rather grand-sounding IDC II?

Clearly Cheshire Police are comfortable carrying out their inquiries under the full gaze of press and public while Cheshire East prefer to hide in the dark.

Farther from ‘transparent’ CEC could not be as any member of the public would tell them if they cared to venture outside their protected bubble.

It won’t do any good sticking their fingers in their ears and yelling, ‘not listening’, come May 2, 2019.

By Guardian columnist Vic Barlow