This is my first column as leader of Mansfield Independents, writes Coun Mick Barton.
Firstly, congratulations to all who were elected in May and Dave Saunders’ recent by-election victory means we are now at equal numbers in the chamber.
As a group, we will try and make sure that all decisions made in the chamber are for the benefit of the district.
We want to ensure that services are not cut and would like see further improvements in areas like the town centre and parks, and to support community safety and the police.
It will also be great to see the town hall unveiled in September.
I do hope the executive mayor and cabinet carry on with programmes the Independents introduced like the first-time buyers housing scheme Robin Hood Lottery, free parking and Green Flag status on all parks.
I would also like to see the council roll out the glass collection scheme as we were told by officers it was almost complete in April.
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Congratulations to everybody who was involved in Armed Forces Day last month and I would like to see more of these events held in the town centre, like classic car shows, scooter and motorbike days and music events for all ages.
I would also like to see the council carry on supporting businesses of all sizes and encourage more start-up businesses by using the council’s Start Up and Growth grant.
I am sure there will be some tough decisions to make in the coming years, but as long as councillors keep the residents’ views and opinions at the forefront of the decision-making, as they were elected to do, I am sure they can move the district forward.
Finally, congratulations to Ben and Tom Birchall for winning the double TT yet again on the Isle of Man.
This was a magnificent achievement and again the boys are flying the flag for Mansfield on a global stage.
I wish them continued success in the World Championship, which they are already riding high in.