LOW VOTE TURNOUT CRITICISED
The ‘low’ turnout of voters for last month’s Amble central ward by-election has been criticised – especially when the poll cost around £4,000.
Coun Robinson won the contest with 79 votes, but less than 14 per cent of the ward electors turned out.
Coun Watson said: “It is an awful shame that the turnout was so low. But £4,000 doesn’t seem right. If that was in Acklington, for example, it would bankrupt them.”
Coun Dargue feared it was indicative of modern-day society.
Coun Robert Arckless added: “We have budgeted for it, but I can think of better ways of spending £4,000.
“It is always the case with by-elections that the cost falls to that particular parish. It is part of the democratic process, but I don’t think it was right to have a contested by-election.”
He added: “Anybody could have told you that the turnout in the middle of February was going to be low. It wasn’t the best of days.”
OVERGROWN BUSH TO BE CUT
Coun Jeff Watson has spoken to James Calvert Spence College’s chairman of governors, Scott Dickinson, about an overgrown hedge at the bus shelter on Acklington Road, by the middle school. Coun Watson said that Mr Dickinson agreed to have it trimmed. Coun Watson suggested it be cut to waist height.
The county council has been criticised for poor communication. Coun Helen Lewis said the town council is still waiting for a sweeping schedule it requested months ago. She added: “It seems to be a losing battle trying to find out basic information.” Coun Weir added: “It was a simple request, but we haven’t had anything yet.”
MAYOR KEEN ON TESCO PROGRESS
Amble mayor Craig Weir has said that the town can’t wait forever for the stalled Tesco supermarket to be built, especially as it will bring much-needed jobs. The company hopes its revised plans will go out for consultation in April.
DIALOGUE OVER GRASS CUTTING
The town council is in discussion with Amble’s James Calvert Spence College about the school carrying out a grass cut of a football pitch at the Welfare for the Easter school holidays, following a request from local players. Discussions about the long-term plan for grass cutting at the Welfare will be discussed in the future.