DCSIMG

Council meeting could be filmed

Wigan Council chamber at the town hall

Wigan Council chamber at the town hall

THE next full Wigan Council meeting could be filmed, in a bid to improve behaviour from unruly councillors.

At tomorrow’s bimonthly meeting (Wednesday), attended by all 75 councillors, Mayor Coun Phyll Cullen will ask members to vote on the decision.

There has been much debate in recent months about filming proceedings in the Town Hall chamber but Council bosses say that a recent survey found that members of the public did not see a need for it.

The most recent meeting was interrupted when Coun Bob Brierley tried to record proceedings on a dictaphone, while police were called to the one before that when Coun Gareth Fairhurst refused a Mayoral request to stop tweeting.

Wigan Council chief executive Donna Hall said: “It seems every council meeting makes the front page of the local paper, not because of the important issues discussed, like how we intend to spend taxpayers’ money, but because of the embarrassing behaviour of a few councillors, two in particular.

“It shouldn’t make the front page for these reasons; it’s a very important meeting where the most difficult decisions about the borough’s future are made.”

Mayor Cullen added: “There has been a lot of drama in the chamber over recent months, causing some very negative media attention.

“We’re hoping that by filming the meeting we’re able to improve the behaviour of those few councillors who use the meeting as an opportunity to raise their own profile by acting up.”

If filming goes go ahead, it will not be streamed live, though residents are reminded that they are welcome to attend, while Evening Post reporter James Illingworth will be tweeting live via his handle @JIllingworthWIG.

The full agenda can be downloaded via www.wigan.gov.uk/meetings

 

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