Former councillor forces election

NILABE120326a2, Terry Hall at Stanley village park.
NILABE120326a2, Terry Hall at Stanley village park.

An ex-councillor, who has forced a parish council to hold an election, says he did it because his former colleagues fail to communicate with villagers.

Terry Hall, who acrimoniously resigned from Stanley and Stanley Common Parish Council in April, blamed the authority for the political ‘apathy’ among villagers, which meant no one has stepped up to take his place.

He said the council has not sent out a newsletter since 2007 and only does the bare minimum to inform parishioners.

Another councillor – Peter Marson – resigned last month, leading Mr Hall to gather signatures from villagers in favour of holding an election to fill Mr Marson’s position.

He said:“I feel you have an obligation as a council representing the public to keep them informed.

“If you do that, you have done your duty –but when you don’t communicate, that’s when you get problems.”

To trigger an election, at least 10 signatures must be gathered and then presented to Erewash Borough Council.

Erewash confirmed that Mr Hall submitted 12 signatures and an election must now take place before September 24.

But chairman of the parish council Col Mike Cheetham defended the authority, claiming it does do enough to keep villagers informed.

“We hold ten meetings a year and they are very, very poorly attended by the public,” he said.

He said bullet points from meetings are put in three noticeboards in each village and full minutes are available at both Post Offices and on the website.

“We do a great deal to communicate, but we can always do more. Whether it would have any effect, I don’t know.”

Col Cheetham explained that the council has had to co-opt a member to fill Mr Hall’s vacancy as no one came forward.

They will now wait for candidates to come forward to fill Mr Marson’s place – if more than one person does, there will be an election.

To nominate yourself, contact Erewash Borough Council.