Fury as under-threat Winifred Kettle care home is off Westhoughton Town Council agenda

The Bolton News: The Winifred Kettle Community Care Centre The Winifred Kettle Community Care Centre

THE future of town councils in Bolton has been plunged into further doubt after Westhoughton Town Council said it would be “illegal” to have a debate on impending changes to a care home.

Proposed changes to Winifred Kettle Community Care Centre will not be discussed at tonight’s planning meeting of Westhoughton Town Council, which has sparked fury from members.

Bolton Council has announced plans to close intermediate care and short-term respite beds at the home in Leigh Road and make it a day-care only facility.

It is part of a scheme which will see Firwood House in Crompton Way close, as the council reorganises post-hospital care.

Town councillors argue that their input is crucial, and there is little point to the town council if it cannot debate local issues.

Cllr David Wilkinson, for Hoskers and Hart Common, requested the issue be placed on the agenda but was told the town council would be acting illegally if it took any action on Winifred Kettle.

The care home is named after a former Westhoughton town councillor who was mayoress four times between 1948 and 1973.

Last month, Conservative borough councillor Andy Morgan — a former Westhoughton town councillor — suggested that town councils should be abolished as the money could be better spent elsewhere. He said this issue further underlined his point that town councils serve “little purpose”.

Westhoughton mayor Cllr Christopher Peacock and council leader Cllr David Chadwick said the matter was down to jurisdiction, with health not falling under the town council’s purview.

Cllr Wilkinson said: “If we can’t discuss Westhoughton issues, what have we got a town council for?”

Cllr Lynda Winrow-Baker, for Daisy Hill, added: “It is our town and the town council should have an active role in the decision.”

Cllr Morgan said: “Something as fundamental as the closure of an intermediate care home is a prime example of what little input town councils really have. The bigger question is can we afford this level of non-decision-making bureaucracy?”

Cllr Peacock said: “Westhoughton has six councillors on Bolton borough and we represent the town’s concerns on these issues there.

"I am cabinet member for adult services so if anyone has any concerns about Winifred Kettle, get in touch with me.”

Town councils discuss planning applications in their role as as a statutory consultee.

Comments (3)

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3:13pm Mon 13 Jan 14

Brumas says...

At last Town councillors (Cllr David Wilkinson said: “If we can’t discuss Westhoughton issues, what have we got a town council for?”) are recognising that Town Councils have no significance.

A point demonstrated yet again, by this article, because despite protestations Bolton Council will prevail, illustrating that Bolton Council give no relevance to the opinion of the residents of Westhoughton or their Town Council. Similarly the opinions of the residents of Blackrod, Horwich and their Town Councils.

How popular would the removal of the precept be to the residents of Blackrod, Horwich and Westhoughton by allowing them to keep their money in their pockets? Rather than wasting the money to be expelled as meaningless, inconsequential hot air.
At last Town councillors (Cllr David Wilkinson said: “If we can’t discuss Westhoughton issues, what have we got a town council for?”) are recognising that Town Councils have no significance. A point demonstrated yet again, by this article, because despite protestations Bolton Council will prevail, illustrating that Bolton Council give no relevance to the opinion of the residents of Westhoughton or their Town Council. Similarly the opinions of the residents of Blackrod, Horwich and their Town Councils. How popular would the removal of the precept be to the residents of Blackrod, Horwich and Westhoughton by allowing them to keep their money in their pockets? Rather than wasting the money to be expelled as meaningless, inconsequential hot air. Brumas
  • Score: 3

11:56pm Mon 13 Jan 14

atlas123 says...

Brumas wrote:
At last Town councillors (Cllr David Wilkinson said: “If we can’t discuss Westhoughton issues, what have we got a town council for?”) are recognising that Town Councils have no significance.

A point demonstrated yet again, by this article, because despite protestations Bolton Council will prevail, illustrating that Bolton Council give no relevance to the opinion of the residents of Westhoughton or their Town Council. Similarly the opinions of the residents of Blackrod, Horwich and their Town Councils.

How popular would the removal of the precept be to the residents of Blackrod, Horwich and Westhoughton by allowing them to keep their money in their pockets? Rather than wasting the money to be expelled as meaningless, inconsequential hot air.
Keeping my money in my pocket gets my vote....

However quaint the notion of a town council is!
[quote][p][bold]Brumas[/bold] wrote: At last Town councillors (Cllr David Wilkinson said: “If we can’t discuss Westhoughton issues, what have we got a town council for?”) are recognising that Town Councils have no significance. A point demonstrated yet again, by this article, because despite protestations Bolton Council will prevail, illustrating that Bolton Council give no relevance to the opinion of the residents of Westhoughton or their Town Council. Similarly the opinions of the residents of Blackrod, Horwich and their Town Councils. How popular would the removal of the precept be to the residents of Blackrod, Horwich and Westhoughton by allowing them to keep their money in their pockets? Rather than wasting the money to be expelled as meaningless, inconsequential hot air.[/p][/quote]Keeping my money in my pocket gets my vote.... However quaint the notion of a town council is! atlas123
  • Score: 0

8:27am Wed 15 Jan 14

Valiant One says...

These Town Councillors have been in office for long enough to know what the
Town Council can or cannot do. Take the Town Council away and there will be no more support grants for your old folk and youngsters
No Remembrance parades. No one to organise the activities that give their communities their individual identities.
Town Councils were hard fought for only 30 years ago and for £16 per year per household (Westhoughton Band D) they represent extremely good value for money. Perhaps your reporter should have said what the remit of a Town Council is. They are not there to duplicate the work of Bolton Council. They are a different entity. Those Councillors that are against the very organisation they represent or used to represent are political opportunists
These Town Councillors have been in office for long enough to know what the Town Council can or cannot do. Take the Town Council away and there will be no more support grants for your old folk and youngsters No Remembrance parades. No one to organise the activities that give their communities their individual identities. Town Councils were hard fought for only 30 years ago and for £16 per year per household (Westhoughton Band D) they represent extremely good value for money. Perhaps your reporter should have said what the remit of a Town Council is. They are not there to duplicate the work of Bolton Council. They are a different entity. Those Councillors that are against the very organisation they represent or used to represent are political opportunists Valiant One
  • Score: 0

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