Wiltshire Publications

New council proposed for Westbury Leigh

This entry was posted on Tuesday, January 26th, 2016 at 11:04 am.

WESTBURYLeigh could have its own parish council if one town councillor’s idea to separate the village from the town gathers public support.

Councillor Ian Taylor is pursuing the idea of having Westbury Leigh, which is currently in Westbury Town Council’s domain, recognised as its own parish. He believes residents would be better represented and their council tax put to better use if they had a dedicated parish council.

Cllr Taylor, who has lived in Westbury Leigh for ten years said, “It would be much better for residents of Westbury Leigh if they had their own parish council. This year people in the village are contributing £16,000 to Westbury’s precept and not getting anything in return.

“Westbury Town Council refused to take on the village car park when Wiltshire Council announced it would be sold. Westbury Leigh Community Project will now take on the car park and pay to maintain it in the future.

“The money we pay the town council could go towards maintaining that car park, which is very important to local residents, and the rest used for taking care of the streets.”

Cllr Taylor defines Westbury Leigh as the main road itself, as well as Parkview Drive, Penny Farthing, Leigh Close, Sun Lane, Sandhole Lane, Mill Lane, Black Horse Lane (Coach House only), Church Lane, Silverthorne Close, Salisbury Close and School Lane.

As well as the free car park, the village also has two places of worship, a pub and a community hall.

Cllr Taylor continued, “Most people I have spoken to about the idea have been in favour of it. Some are against it but I haven’t yet heard a convincing argument for why it’s a bad idea. To make it a reality the proposal would need a petition signed by over 50% of Westbury Leigh electors, and Wiltshire Council would have to carry out a governance review. A parish council would have more control and more funding available than the community project that currently represents residents’ interests.”

Cllr Taylor hopes to take his idea forward in discussions with Wiltshire Council officers and Westbury town councillors.