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Axing council would be a ‘big mistake’

By Burton Mail  |  Posted: March 24, 2014

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AN Ashby councillor has made an impassioned plea to save North West Leicestershire District Council after it emerged it could face the axe.

County bosses are investigating the possibility of replacing Leicestershire’s seven district councils with a single authority.

It is believed the move could save more than £30 million, but county council leader Nick Rushton, who also sits on North West Leicestershire District Council, said no decision would be taken until it had gained the support of every authority.

Many councillors have hit out at the proposal, although it has been backed by the county council’s UKIP members.

Should the change come into force it could mean councillors from Leicester and the east of the county making decisions that affect communities in Ashby, something Graham Allman, a district councillor in the town, is fiercely against.

Councillor Allman said people need local councillors to fight for their interests.

He told the Mail: “It would be a big mistake. It would alienate local communities.

“Look at what it happening in Market Street in Ashby; the county council is going to pedestrianise it against the wishes of citizens.

“The amount of letters I’ve had through my door about the Bath Grounds - that won’t happen any more if this change happens. You might as well run the council from Westminster.

“There is no better way to source how people are feeling than by walking down the street. Councillors are there to represent their constituency. District councillors from all parties do a great job on behalf of the people they represent.”

Councillor Allman said he hopes county bosses will not sanction the change.

He said: “Personally, I don’t think it will happen. I think Nick (Rushton) is playing devil’s advocate and it is his job to explore avenues.”

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