27th June 2012
BEAMINSTER: Town’s jubilee efforts fail
More should’ve been done, says council chairman
By Paul Crompton
BEAMINSTER failed in its efforts to celebrate the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, the town council chairman has admitted.
More should have been done in Beaminster for the jubilee celebrations Councillor Gilbert Berry said during a town council meeting.
A lack of bunting in the square was singled out for criticism and more money should have been made available he told councillors at the June 25th meeting.
The poor showing was in stark contrast to neighbouring town Bridport, which had red, white and blue bunting strewn across all three of its main town centre roads.
Councillor Berry said: “I think the general feeling is we could have done better.
“There was a lack of bunting compared with other places. The square looked a bit sparse compared to Bridport.
“In fairness and on reflection we could have done better.
“I think we could have found money for it; where there’s a will there’s a way. Next time I promise you it will be different.”
This year no money was set aside for the event in the council’s budget.
Street party organiser Janet Page – who has received a number of nasty emails bemoaning the town’s efforts – personally raised £75 from a cake stall.
A further £200 grant was given by the district council and around £30 raised during the jubilee weekend from the sale of tea and cakes.
Millfield resident David Pope held a street party for neighbours on June 5th during the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee weekend.
He said at the time that some people were going to complain about the town’s perceived lack of effort.
He said: “One or two people and a couple of businesses put effort in to putting flags out but the place just didn’t light up.
“For me, being a Royalist, it was just a bit sad.”
Town councillor Ms Page said she was asked to organise a street party after she arranged one for Prince Charles and Diana’s wedding with no money.
Defending the celebration efforts she said: “People are complaining about bunting and that we didn’t decorate the square but I looked at it very hard and there wasn’t anywhere to put it, unlike Bridport which has buildings three stories high and proper fixings for bunting.
“People should look back and they will find the council has not organised any festivities at all.
“They did their bit by helping out letting me use rooms for meetings and lending tables and chairs, which is what the council is there for, but it’s not for the council to organise stuff, it’s up to the residents and always has been.
“It seems everybody expects other people to do it for them.
“Everybody is blaming the council, I’m getting nasty emails from people, but everybody that went to the street party enjoyed themselves.”
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