Agenda item

Public Comments and Petitions


Eluned Lewis-Nichol, Chair of Kingsthorpe Conservation Area Committee, addressed Council in respect of agenda item 9 and stated that the application for a Kingsthorpe Parish Council had been made solely by Whitehills and Spring Park Residents’ Association (WASPRA) but other areas would be affected. She queried why St David’s ward was included in the proposal. Ms Lewis-Nichol stated that several key bodies in the area had not been consulted, including the Kingsthorpe Conservation Area Committee and questioned on what basis consultees were selected. She advised that several people she had spoken with who did receive the consultation questionnaire found it so convoluted that they were unable to complete it. Ms Lewis-Nichol asked that the consultation be re-opened and made available to all of the residents that would be affected by the proposal.


Ann Timpson addressed Council and paid tribute to the Guildhall Office staff and expressed her sadness that the Guildhall Office would no longer be used as a place to be welcomed into the building.


Linda Toone, Chair of Friends of Thornton Park, addressed Council in respect of agenda item 9 and stated that the Group had not been made aware of the proposals so could not make comment. She queried what implications a Kingsthorpe Parish Council would have on the maintenance and running of the park and added that the park was part of the Queen’s Park Neighbourhood Plan and questioned whether the proposal would affect this.



Toby Birch, Chair of the charity Community Spaces Northampton, addressed Council in respect of agenda item 9 and stated that one of the community buildings run by the charity would be situated within the new Kingsthorpe Parish Council boundary. He advised that the charity had not been consulted on the proposal and elaborated that the charity along with other local organisations, including Friends of Thornton Park, WASPRA and Semilong residents and councillors, regularly attended park organisation meetings, and at no point did WASPRA discuss its proposal for a Parish Council. He added that many patrons of the community centre had also not been consulted. Mr Birch queried who would take ownership of the community centre and associated buildings and expressed concern about the increased costs of running the centre which would not be in the best interests of the charity. He suggested that the proposed boundary be reconsidered.


Tony Mallard, Chair of Eastfield Residents Association, addressed Council in relation to garden waste collections and commented that many residents would not subscribe to the proposed charges; instead, the town would see an increase in fly-tipping. He added that over the years, Friends of Eastfield Park had done an outstanding job of maintaining the park and now feared that it would once again become a dumping ground for garden waste.


James Wright, resident of Queens Park, addressed Council in respect of agenda item 9 and stated several years ago, approval was granted by the Council to create a Neighbourhood Plan (including Thornton Park and allotments), which was now in progress. He noted that the proposed Kingsthorpe Parish Council also included Thornton Park and added that Queens Park Residents Association would feel particularly aggrieved if any influence they had over the park were to be taken away from them or watered down in any way.


Steve Miller, a Kingsthorpe resident and representative of WASPRA, addressed Council in respect of agenda item 9 and commented that whist the residents’ association believed that a parish council for Kingsthorpe would offer a lot of exciting opportunities, they previously expressed reservations around the format of the consultation. Engagement with the public was not comprehensive and the pros and cons were not clearly explained. Many residents that Mr Miller had spoken to had not received the consultation and people at this meeting spoke of its inadequacies. Mr Miller noted that just 5% of Kingsthorpe residents responded to the consultation; this could not be considered a mandate. Mr Miller, in his opinion, concluded that due to the poor consultation and narrow timescales between creating parish councils and holding elections in May 2020, WASPRA could not presently support the creation of a Kingsthorpe Parish Council


Aileen Dunkley, Chair of Kingsthorpe Conservation Area Advisory Committee, addressed Council in respect of agenda item 9 and stated that it was difficult for the Committee to give a view on the proposal since it had not been informed of it and further stated that no Kingsthorpe residents that she had spoken to had seen the consultation documents. She advised that had the Committee seen the proposals, it would have objected based on the size and number of residents that would be affected. Ms Dunkley felt that the proposal should be rejected based on the problems with the consultation and that residents had been denied their right to an opinion on the proposals.