Set back for 'Yarm for Yorkshire' campaign

POLL DECISION: Cabinet says no to Yarm Hambleton move

POLL DECISION: Cabinet says no to Yarm Hambleton move

First published in News The Northern Echo: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter (Stockton/Hartlepool)

THE Yarm for Yorkshire campaign suffered a set-back this evening (Thursday, September 4) when an influential council committee rejected the idea.

Stockton Borough Council’s cabinet met to consider the verdict of a May poll which showed 89 per cent of the 24 per cent of eligible Yarm voters opted to incorporate the town into neighbouring Hambleton District Council in North Yorkshire.

The cabinet warned that townsfolk had not been given important information on the implications, including the fact that such a move could leave the tax-payer with a £100,000 bill.

The matter will now go to the full council - who will make a final decision on whether to override the cabinet and refer the proposal to the Government’s Boundary Commission.

The May poll in Yarm was organised and paid for by Yarm Town Council and its leader, Peter Monck, said he stands by its verdict to quit the borough of Stockton.

Joining Hambleton was also backed by former Labour Yarm councillor, Terry Chapman, who spoke at the meeting held in Stockton Central Library.

He said recently introduced parking charges on Yarm High Street was bringing in £400,000 a year and the council was also benefitting from thousands of pounds in ‘new homes bonus’ money after approving hundreds of new homes in the Yarm area.

“If the council is minded to refuse this request (to refer the issue to the Boundary Commission) it makes a farce of democracy," he added.

Several cabinet members pointed out that only 24 per cent of Yarm people voted - meaning the opinion of 76 per cent was unknown and that money raised from parking charges could only be spent on transport issues.

Director of Public Health for Stockton, Peter Kelly, said funding for the NHS and public health, including for the NHS, was higher in Stockton than in North Yorkshire and a move to Hambleton would complicate matters for GPs operating in the town.

Cllr Ann McCoy, Labour, said she had personally received an unsolicited email from a school governor in the town worried about the effects on education.

Cllr Jim Beall, Labour, said a lot of the dissatisfaction expressed by people in Yarm related to the number of housing applications that had been passed in recent years. However that was down to a change in Government guidelines not the council, he argued. He said: “The way for the people of Yarm to change that is to vote to change the Government.”

The full council meets on Wednesday, September 17, but the agenda has not yet been agreed.

Comments (8)

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7:07pm Thu 4 Sep 14

TerryFBH says...

Disingenuous hypocrites ignore a poll where 89% voted for change - the arrogance of these people is staggering.

The money is there. Health funding is based on need - which is why Stockton has greater funding. One letter from an anonymous school Governor scaremongering does not undermine the case. And I witnessed the labour councillors voting all the same way on planning and subsequently saying they were proud to do so re planning issues.

They even criticised the excellent turnout - 24% in 4 hours - more than most police commissioners were elected on - and even more than most of these Councillors received at the ballot box.

Disingenuous hypocrites.
Disingenuous hypocrites ignore a poll where 89% voted for change - the arrogance of these people is staggering. The money is there. Health funding is based on need - which is why Stockton has greater funding. One letter from an anonymous school Governor scaremongering does not undermine the case. And I witnessed the labour councillors voting all the same way on planning and subsequently saying they were proud to do so re planning issues. They even criticised the excellent turnout - 24% in 4 hours - more than most police commissioners were elected on - and even more than most of these Councillors received at the ballot box. Disingenuous hypocrites. TerryFBH
  • Score: 7

7:59pm Thu 4 Sep 14

359282 says...

I'm afraid it's going to take more than simple democracy to pull the assembled snouts of Stockton Council out of the deep trough that is Yarm.
I'm afraid it's going to take more than simple democracy to pull the assembled snouts of Stockton Council out of the deep trough that is Yarm. 359282
  • Score: 7

8:36pm Thu 4 Sep 14

Sextus _Empiricus says...

Terry, it's democracy at work....Cabinet are elected, they voted and it's time to move it to full Council where in all likelihod they will bury it. At the poll, 76% have voted with their feet at a non binding poll... waste of time and a waste of money no matter how much spin you put on it. How can you expect SBC to throw good money after bad...??
Terry, it's democracy at work....Cabinet are elected, they voted and it's time to move it to full Council where in all likelihod they will bury it. At the poll, 76% have voted with their feet at a non binding poll... waste of time and a waste of money no matter how much spin you put on it. How can you expect SBC to throw good money after bad...?? Sextus _Empiricus
  • Score: -10

9:21pm Thu 4 Sep 14

sensible says...

Council ignores the voting public shock!
Council ignores the voting public shock! sensible
  • Score: 7

9:32pm Thu 4 Sep 14

spragger says...

'Stockton Borough Council’s Labour cabinet'
Labour spendthrifts do not wish their cash cow to leave SBC & join another Council
Is that news?
'Stockton Borough Council’s Labour cabinet' Labour spendthrifts do not wish their cash cow to leave SBC & join another Council Is that news? spragger
  • Score: 9

6:52am Fri 5 Sep 14

Davy Crocket says...

Who pays for Benefits Street if Yarm leaves !
Who pays for Benefits Street if Yarm leaves ! Davy Crocket
  • Score: 4

4:24pm Fri 5 Sep 14

davideclark says...

West Mids have just elected a Police and Crime Commissioner on a 10% turnout.

Yarm vote was in 4 hours, during a bank holiday/half term week and no postal vote
West Mids have just elected a Police and Crime Commissioner on a 10% turnout. Yarm vote was in 4 hours, during a bank holiday/half term week and no postal vote davideclark
  • Score: 4

12:02pm Tue 9 Sep 14

lollymay says...

24% of the electorate voted. 89% of those who voted, gave a 'Yes' for Yarm for Yorkshire.

SBC pitched the polling day on the 27th May. This was during a school holiday period and many voters would have been away on vacation.
No postal vote was available, therefore those who were unable to attend the very narrow window of 5 hours (4pm-9pm) of the opening of the polling stations, were also unable to vote. Regular Postal Voters were no informed where to vote, if they were able to attend visit any Polling Station. No advertising or notifications from SBC that this referendum poll was taking place.
Not the most fairest or convenient opinion polls was it, but 24% did vote, and we have had governments that have taken power with a similar percentage in the past.
24% of the electorate voted. 89% of those who voted, gave a 'Yes' for Yarm for Yorkshire. SBC pitched the polling day on the 27th May. This was during a school holiday period and many voters would have been away on vacation. No postal vote was available, therefore those who were unable to attend the very narrow window of 5 hours (4pm-9pm) of the opening of the polling stations, were also unable to vote. Regular Postal Voters were no informed where to vote, if they were able to attend visit any Polling Station. No advertising or notifications from SBC that this referendum poll was taking place. Not the most fairest or convenient opinion polls was it, but 24% did vote, and we have had governments that have taken power with a similar percentage in the past. lollymay
  • Score: 2

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