‘Special expense’ working party proposed for Market Harborough

Published Wednesday 15 May 2024

A long-term working group to consider how budget is spent in the council’s ‘special expense’ areas of Market Harborough has been proposed by Harborough District Council.

In the absence of a town council, the council holds a ‘special expense’ budget for wards within the town’s boundaries to cover activities that will either solely or predominantly affect those areas. 

A Market Harborough ‘special expense’ working party will be an officially administered council meeting consisting of elected representatives for the ward areas in the town. The working party will focus on issues relating to their collective wards and will create a forum for discussion about community matters of interest and benefit to the local community. It will make recommendations to the council’s Cabinet on how budget ringfenced for these areas is spent. 

The working party will also invite reports and presentations from outside groups such as the Neighbourhood Hub and Neighbourhood Forums about their work to develop Neighbourhood Plans and how they are being progressed in line with our Local Plan timetable.  

Typical areas of interest the working party will consider include, but would not be limited to, cemeteries, parks, recreation grounds and open spaces, town centre support including events but as elected representatives the working party can also seek to influence via Cabinet or other agencies/bodies other community interest items relating to the special expense area. 

The ward areas and elected ward councillors are: 

Great Bowden & Arden - Cllr Buddy Anderson and Cllr Phil Knowles 

Little Bowden – Cllr Stuart Finan and Cllr Peter James 

Logan – Cllr Barbara Johnson and Cllr Geraldine Whitmore 

Welland – Cllr Darren Woodiwiss, Cllr Rose Forman and Cllr Lynne Taylor 

Lubenham – Cllr Asher – Wellington Place only 

The working party will be a public meeting and the minutes of each working party would be presented to the next available Cabinet meeting for approval. 

Cllr Knowles, Leader of Harborough District Council, said: “The formation of a Market Harborough Special Expense Working Party will bring significant benefits to all residents, community groups, businesses and partners within the Market Harborough ward areas. Ideas and proposals from residents and community groups could be brought to the meetings for consideration and if viable, further investigation. This is something that I believe should have already been in place – sadly that has not happened but the coalition administration will now take the necessary action.” 

A report will go to Cabinet in June regarding the creation of a working party with recommended dates.