At the Full Council Meeting on 10 November, Conservative-run Swindon Council agreed to introduce new parish councils in the current non-parished areas, including for Eastcott. 29 Tories voted in favour of the proposals, there was one abstention. Dave Wood, Lib Dem Eastcott, was absent and not there to represent local residents.
Eastcott will now be part of a larger parish which will include Old Town, the Town Centre, Parks, Lawns and Walcot.
All Labour councillors voted against and spoke out against the plans which will see the new parish councils taking on street cleaning, pothole filling and grounds maintenance services. Though you would be paying a parish council to deliver these services through a new Parish Precept in your council-tax bill, the Council has ruled out giving residents a rebate for no longer running these services.
The Labour Party believes this to be a form of double taxation. Together with general Council-Tax increases, this will mean your overall Council Tax bill will go up by at least £120.
The larger a parish the better placed it is to support major amenities like Queen's Park and spread costs through economies of scale. I voted against the introduction of new parishes because they are happening despite widespread resident opposition.