Council ‘needs to grow up and work together’

An EASTWOOD resident hit out at town councillors in a meeting this week telling them they should ‘stop bickering and point scoring and serve the local population’.

Vicki Jones said at the meeting on Monday night she was ‘shocked’ at the conduct of councillors at the previous month’s meeting, where one councillor made a hand gesture to another ‘as if to suggest mental instability’.

She was also unhappy at the ‘negative comments and discussion’ about a town council employee.

Ms Jones said it was ‘unacceptable behaviour’ and councillors were ‘letting themselves down’ by showing very little respect for themselves or the voters of Eastwood.

“Councillors should refrain from bickering and point scoring and should unite and serve the local population,” said Ms Jones.

“I am not saying that all council meetings should be ‘lovey dovey’. I know there will be heated discussion, but I don’t think that should turn into abusive behaviour and it’s not what I want to see as a member of the public.”

Leader of the council and Labour member David Bagshaw said he wanted to work together, but the Labour councillors were being repeatedly ‘rebuffed’ by the opposition Lib Dems.

But Lib Dem councillor Josie Forrest hit back at Cllr Bagshaw’s comments saying: “We have our right to have our views without being accused of not communicating.”

Town Mayor and meeting chair Ken Woodhead said the council should ‘start afresh and get on with things’, and Cllr Brian Griffin said: “I walk out from here some nights in absolute despair. Lets move on’.”

Ms Jones said it was one thing saying things would change, but she wanted to see it at future meetings.

“I don’t want to know whose fault it is, I just want to be able to come back in a few months and it be different,” she added.