Vote YES for the UK’s biggest Town Council

on Jun 25 in Uncategorized by

Sutton Coldfield’s residents have been working for years to hold a ballot to restore an independent town council.

The town council will give Sutton’s 100,000 residents a civic voice. It will reinstate a mayor to promote the town’s identity and public life. It will breathe new life into Sutton and it will help to save the crumbling town hall.

By law the town council will have ‘general legal powers of competence’ so it can improve local services, and it can go the extra mile with things like scrutinising planning applications, cleaning streets, and delivering improvements like Sutton in Bloom.

The Town Council will champion the long over-due regeneration of Sutton Town centre, as well as local centres like Mere Green and New Oscott.

At the Highbury Conference last year to review the governance of Birmingham City Council, attended by chief civil servant Sir Bob Kerslake, I was told a wealthy investor wanted to get involved with the regeneration of Sutton town centre, but he didn’t know who was in charge or who to speak to.

The Sutton Town Council will address this problem. It will provide for effective leadership and vision for the town, and it will serve as a ‘go to’ organisation.

Sutton Coldfield's historic high street.

Sutton Coldfield’s historic high street.

The Sutton Coldfield Town Centre Regeneration Framework was produced in 2008 as the masterplan for Sutton’s town centre; a key objective was to recapture the lost grandeur of a Royal Town.

The masterplan has been sitting on a shelf collecting dust for seven years because no organisation was set up to implement it; this is why we need a town council

In Shrewsbury it is the town council that is delivering the masterplan for their town’s refurbishment. They do this by building partnerships, bidding for funds, raising standards, and doing property deals. Sutton’s town council could do all of this.

A Royal Sutton Town Council will cost no household more than a pound week, and in time it should be self-funding as it bids for resources currently unavailable to the town.

If you are on the electoral roll in Sutton Coldfield, you should have received your ballot paper. Consider voting YES. We won’t get this opportunity again.

Nick Corbett, Chartered Town Planner, Transforming Cities Ltd.


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