Hope for better turnout to Halesowen forums

Halesowen News: Councillors and council employees outnumbered the members of the public at September's Halesowen North and South community forum. Councillors and council employees outnumbered the members of the public at September's Halesowen North and South community forum.

THE next round of Halesowen community forums are being held this month with Dudley Council chiefs hoping they will be more successful than last year's sparsely attended meetings.

The forums, which replaced area committee meetings last February, were chronically attended in 2013 with only two members of the public turning up to the September Halesowen and North forum at the Cornbow Hall.

Halesowen North councillor Jeff Hill, chairman of the Halesowen North and South community forum, said: "We all hope the attendances rise at the forum meetings and hopefully they will as they become more established and residents realise issues can be raised and solved at the meetings."

Councillor David Sparks, leader of Dudley Council, said: “There are many issues affecting people in their communities, and as a community council we want to listen to what people have to say, and offer what help and support we can.

“The community forums are very much led by local people and the local issues that affect them, and I hope people will take the opportunity to work with us to make improvements to our communities.

He added: "They give people an opportunity to raise issues and concerns on any subject but could include the £60 million worth of savings the council needs to make over the next three years, car parking in town centres, the council’s new waste or recycling scheme."

Local councillors, representatives from the police and fire service along with various council workers are on hand at the forums to discuss issues with residents.

The forums also have the power to allocate money to local groups who make a difference in the community.

The Halesowen North and Halesowen South community forum, is being held at Hurst Green Primary, Narrow Lane, at 6.30pm on Thursday, January 30.

Belle Vale, Hayley Green and Cradley South community forum is being held at Windsor High School, Richmond Street, at 6.30pm on Wednesday, February 5.

For more information on community forums visit www.dudley.gov.uk/about/community-council.

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