A Letter from Nantwich update 

April 2009                                                                                                                           

It's all change in the local councils

SO we are now "under new management" as far as local government is concerned. As from April 1 -who chose that date for a major change? - everything that was previously carried out by Crewe and Nantwich Borough Council is the responsibility of the new Cheshire East Council.

   The new white flag, with its green and orange logo (above, left), now flies over local council buildings.  

   Well, it is not entirely true about the devolved powers as Nantwich Town Council, for one, is hoping that some of the work can fall on its shoulders and is going all out to prove that it is more than capable.

   It all follows a move by the New Labour Government to remove one tier of local government by creating Cheshire West and Chester on the one hand and Cheshire East on the other. This killed off Cheshire County Council as well as Crewe and Nantwich Borough Council among others.

   Old Dabbers such as myself see something nicely ironic in that as we have never liked being "taken over" by the old Crewe Council. To repeat earlier Letters from Nantwich, the three local authorities of Crewe and the urban and rural councils of Nantwich were merged into a single borough council in 1974 in a previous local government reform. Indeed, the logo was a figure three lying on its side so that it looked like a linked C and an N.  

   Nantwich Town Council (formerly Nantwich Urban

 

District Council) has decided to have a Mayor. Formerly the leading councillor was a Chairman.

   This change will come about next month - the normal time for changes in local government -  when Cllr Mrs Edith Williams will be elected as Mayor, with council stalwart Cllr Mrs Joyce Stockton as her deputy, at Brookfield Hall, the council's headquarters (above).

   Mrs Williams' son, Alan, is to be her consort.

   The last person to hold the post of Chairman was Cllr Keith Cafferty.

   There is no equivalent of the old Nantwich Rural District Council in the new-look local government. Instead the

 

pressing matters in Cheshire's fine, flat, countryside will be run by the various parish councils.

   Strictly speaking, Nantwich Town Council has only parish council status, but how satisfying it is that Crewe Town Council will be the same . . .

   Mind you, Crewe hasn't done too badly out of the change. Former Borough Councillor Margaret Simon is the new authority's first Mayor. Even the Cheshire East website seems to recognise the importance of the railway town as it carries a picture of a Crewe terrace of houses in its heading (see the top of this page).

   A little bit further away - but still in South Cheshire - the old Congleton Borough Council headquarters in Westfields, Sandbach, will be the new Cheshire East "head office". This is despite a Macclesfield address being on the authority's website for the past year of change-over preparations.

   It might not be too bad being part of East Cheshire, after all. A rumour going around locally that the garden waste recycling brown bin service will be free because, unlike Crewe and Nantwich Borough Council, other local authorities did not make a charge, was borne out by a note on the website at this time.  

l The other half of the borough council, Crewe, was only a parish council when the changes came about, but after campaigning to be a Town Council with a Town Mayor it got its way in April 2013.

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