Dozens at­tend first town meet­ing – then make their de­mands

Macclesfield Express - - FRONT PAGE - STU­ART GREER

DOZENS of res­i­dents turned out to wit­ness the his­toric first meet­ing of Macclesfield Town Coun­cil.

The event saw a mix­ture of ex­pe­ri­enced politi­cians and new-com­ers con­vene at the town hall to start a new era in lo­cal democ­racy.

The jour­ney to the in­au­gu­ral meet­ing on May 21 was far from smooth fol­low­ing a bal­lot box blun­der at the re­cent elec­tions where vot­ers were given the wrong forms.

Cheshire East Coun­cil had to go to a court to get per­mis­sion to re­view the re­sult which even­tu­ally saw Couns Neil Puttick and Chris An­drew elected to rep­re­sent south ward.

They joined Couns Liz Durham and Martin Hardy rep­re­sent­ing Bro­ken Cross, Couns Bev­er­ley Doo­ley and Janet Jack­son speak for Cen­tral ward, and Coun Philip Bolton rep­re­sent­ing East ward. The Hurds­field ward elected Coun Matthew Shar­rocks, West and Ivy ward elected Couns Alift Hare­wood and Adam Schofield and Coun Ainsley Arnold and Coun Gareth Jones rep­re­sent Tyther­ing­ton.

Res­i­dents wasted no time in set­ting out their de­mands of the new coun­cil.

For­mer lo­cal author­ity plan­ning of­fi­cer John Knight urged coun­cil­lors to re­spond to the lat­est ver­sion of the Cheshire East Lo­cal Plan, while newly elected bor­ough coun­cil­lor Mick War­ren and Amanda Berry, from South Park al­lot­ments, called for work to begin on man­ag­ing the town’s al­lot­ments, which now fall un­der the coun­cil’s re­mit.

Keith Smith from Macclesfield Civic So­ci­ety made a plea for Macclesfield to get new signs to re­place the ‘dirt and bro­ken’ street fur­ni­ture in place on the town’s bound­aries.

Other is­sues raised was cre­at­ing a web­site for the coun­cil, fund­ing for WW1 dis­plays and work to re­store war memo­ri­als.

Coun­cil­lors also paid trib­ute to Janet Jacket who clocked up 138 may­oral vis­its dur­ing her year as mayor.

She said it had been a ‘fan­tas­tic ex­pe­ri­ence’.

The new mayor and chair­man of the coun­cil is Liz Durham, while Alift Hare­wood will be deputy­mayor and deputy chair­man.

The coun­cil is to get a bud­get of £575,000 to spend on lo­cal ser­vices and will be re­spon­si­ble for al­lot­ments, public toi­lets, town cen­tre man­age­ment, street fur­ni­ture, Christ­mas lights, flo­ral dis­plays, the We­ston Com­mu­nity Cen­tre and CCTV cam­eras.

It’s in­terim clerk is Pete Turner.

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