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Revealed: The ‘toxic’ relations between two Norfolk councils

PUBLISHED: 11:41 06 October 2018 | UPDATED: 16:35 06 October 2018

The councils fell out over the installation of play equipment at Fearns Park in Cromer. Tim Adams and disability awareness campaigner Emma Spagnola at the site. Picture: Sonya Duncan

The councils fell out over the installation of play equipment at Fearns Park in Cromer. Tim Adams and disability awareness campaigner Emma Spagnola at the site. Picture: Sonya Duncan

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Relations between two Norfolk councils have been described as “toxic”.

Cromer town councillor Tim Adams has organised a special meeting to discuss the authority’s relations with North Norfolk District Council (NNDC).

He said residents in north Norfolk “were never truly receiving the best possible value as a result of our work together being so fractious”.

In an exchange of emails between the councils, Mr Adams said: “The district council obviously seems to hold the view that the town council is some sort of irrelevant annoyance”.

Bad blood between the councils came to a head this month over the installation of play equipment unsuitable for children with disabilities at Fearns Park in Cromer.

Mr Adams said: “I have called for this meeting to discuss working relations between the town and district authorities, which could be described as toxic.

“I have been particularly annoyed at the way the district council has dealt with play equipment in Cromer, particularly at Fearns Park.”

He wants a mediator to improve relations, and a politically balanced forum to be set up to discuss how the councils work in the future.

John Lee, leader of NNDC, said: “Considerable efforts and resources are provided to Cromer by NNDC on an ongoing basis.

“Just this week the BBC has been filming on Cromer pier, which has brought both profile and business to the town and will continue to do so at a national scale. This has been supported behind the scenes by hard working NNDC officers who have helped enable this project to go ahead.

“A few days before this, the same was the case for a visit by a high profile international clothing brand which filmed an advertising campaign on the pier.

“Earlier in the year we had the visits of the national Blue Flag Beach Awards and the BBC Antiques Roadshow, and Cromer Carnival and the Crab and Lobster Festival, all of which have been and continue to be supported in various ways by NNDC.”

Senior representatives from NNDC will attend the special meeting of Cromer Town Council at 7pm on October 11, at North Lodge Park.

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