‘Arrogant council is not listening to us’

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Anston Parish Council has been branded ‘arrogant’ by a resident after councillors ‘verbally attacked’ villagers at a meeting.

Christine Sadler said that some councillors’ attitude towards members of the public who attend meetings was unacceptable.

“It is like the members of the public who attend meetings are regarded as a nuisance that they have to put up with,” she said.

“They are arrogant and are disregarding and disrespecting people.”

During the monthly parish council meeting last Monday, Mrs Saddler said that two councillors referred to members of the public as ‘anoraks with nothing better to do’.

“Their attitude on many occasions has been that they are elected to serve and what they do is not the affair of members of the public,” she said.

“Quite apart from having no right of reply, I did not vote these people in to abuse me and ignore my points in meetings.”

This latest incident follows on from a meeting in February when police were called by council chairman Dominic Beck, pictured, after a member of the public refused his requests to leave.

But Coun Beck said that although debate was important, meetings shouldn’t descend into ‘squabbles’ and urged councillors and the community to work together.

“I would hope that everyone who actually lives in Anston has the best interests of the parish at heart and to that end should put personal grievances and squabbles aside to achieve that,” he said.

“Debate and disagreement is a healthy part of our democracy but this should never descend into tirades or vexatiousness which all too often it does.”

“I would urge anyone who is interested in your community to attend one of the Parish Council meetings held on the third Monday of the month except in August at the Parish Hall.”