An ambitious year for Chippenham Town Council
It has been a busy and exciting year for Chippenham Town Council as they finalise the devolution of assets and services from Wiltshire Council. The transfer of assets and services will enable the Town Council to proactively protect and improve the future of Chippenham for the residents and visitors to the town.
The Friday and Saturday charter market has grown in the numbers of traders and shoppers since Chippenham Town Council took over responsibility in June 2019 and community play areas, previously closed by Wiltshire Council, have been re-opened. Attention has been given to their creative use for children alongside their safety.
Grounds maintenance continues to be a priority and Chippenham Town Council has taken on responsibility for most of the town’s amenity land, including Monkton Park. A brand new road sweeper, brilliantly named ‘Sweep Caroline’ after a call out to the Chippenham community for their creative suggestions, is starting to make a real impact on the visual appearance of the town. A new reporting system makes it far easier to contact the Town Council via their new email address firstname.lastname@example.org and the Council is actively addressing residents’ concerns.
In the words of a recent Peer Review, which was the first ever in the local council sector, Chippenham Town Council are ‘an aspirational and ambitious council’. As we constantly make improvements to our services and to the town, as a responsible public body we must be mindful to ensure that our finances and investment in our infrastructure can sustain this level of quality and improvement well into the future.
The Town Council are already making plans for 2020 and beyond. Of course the cost of running the Council increases each year, however next financial year, we will have full responsibility and incur the cost for all services devolved from Wiltshire Council from June 2020 when their out-sourcing contract ends. We will also take on responsibility for some of the events that the Chippenham BID used to undertake, now that it ceases to exist after March 2020. A programme of works is being planned to keep our buildings attractive places for people to visit and get most benefit from the services we provide.
Consequently, Councillors have agreed a Council Tax precept increase of 9.36% for 2020/21 which equates to £22.44 per year for a Band D household.
Cllr Sandie Webb, Leader of Chippenham Town Council said; “It is a pleasure to lead such an aspirational and ambitious council that is constantly looking to make improvements in the town for the benefit of residents and visitors alike.”
Mark smith, Chief Executive said; “Chippenham Town Council, as a responsible public body, is mindful of the investment necessary to ensure that the town has a financially viable council well into the future in order to deliver quality services to residents and visitors.”