Residents sign up to people’s panel scheme

MORE than 50 residents have signed up to a scheme aimed at influencing how services are developed and improved in their town.

Cramlington Town Council set up the People’s Panel in September to allow local residents to have their say on issues affecting them.

And so far more than 50 have put their names forward.

But the council is still keen to attract more.

Over the coming weeks councillors will be seeking views on proposed new developments such as the new cinema and refurbishment of Manor Walks.

It will also be looking to engage residents in the preparation of the Cramlington Community Plan and the town council’s budget proposals for 2012-13.

Town council Chairman David Shaw, said: “Consultation is key to making the right decisions and for the town council to be effective we need to know what local residents really think.

“Consultation through the People’s Panel offers residents the opportunity to have their say.

“The council has a duty to respect the views of the majority in its decisions or to provide some very good reasons for not doing so.

“Although more than 50 residents have already signed up to the panel, we need at least 100 spread across Cramlington for it to be considered truly representative.

“I also think we need people of all ages to get involved and I would encourage everyone to consider joining.”

Anyone who agrees to take part will be consulted on a variety of issues, typically three or four times a year.

The council intends holding a prize draw once the panel has reached 100 members, with the winner receiving £50 of vouchers.

Further details and membership forms can be obtained from the town council offices at Concordia Leisure Centre or from