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Election Leaflet - 2

Local Taxation

Last year, Kirkbymoorside had the highest tax charge in the whole of Ryedale by a whisker. This year, the town had a much larger increase than any of the other Ryedale towns, and is now far and away the most highly taxed part of Ryedale.

No justification has been offered for regular large rises in the tax charge set by the town council. More than half the money is spent on administration.

The Old Library

The county council has provided enough money to put the old library in decent order without any need to raise loans. Time should now be allowed for open discussions about the best use for the building. Options should not be constrained by restrictive terms of reference or arbitrary time limits.

It is likely that the building is to be boarded up to prevent damage. If elected, I will campaign for any final decision to be left until after May 2011, when the whole town council will be up for election. After that, we can hope to have a democratically appointed council that is able to decide the matter in the interests of all the people of the town.

Town Council Office

The drawbacks of the present office in The Shambles have been greatly exaggerated. It may be possible to find improved accommodation, but the first priority is to control excessive administrative costs. Only when the council has looked at more efficient ways to carry out its duties will it make sense to decide what premises are needed.


The town council should be the focus for local democracy, giving people the feeling that there is a body that is approachable and responsive to their concerns.

Kirkbymoorside Town Council is not meeting that need. In the last few years, the council has been inward looking and out of touch with local people. It has failed to provide leadership and guidance to local voluntary groups.

The “Town Hall” debacle has illustrated just how remote the council has become. A packed town meeting was subjected to council members talking down to them and attempting to suppress their views. This cannot go on.

Talented Kirkbymoorside people

There is a wealth of talent in Kirkbymoorside. Yet the council makes little use of it, with most committees made up only of council members. Decision making could be significantly more effective if local skills were brought on to more council committees. The old library project could still benefit if this approach is adopted.


There is plenty of scope for cost cutting through greater efficiency. The present council has simply let costs rise without any visible effort to limit them. While a council must act within the law, excessive legalism is causing wasted time and high costs. This can and must be turned round. A lower tax charge, without loss of services, is a priority target.

About Martin Brampton

My wife and I arrived in the town 30 years ago, with two tiny children. We have found Kirkbymoorside a great place to live. My work has nearly always been with computers, and currently I develop software for web sites from my office in the Summit Bookshop.

As well as technical work, I have at times had responsibility for legal, financial and administrative matters. My work has been both in the private sector, and also for a while in local government. I was town clerk of Kirkbymoorside from October 2003 to March 2005.

Proposed by

Tony Clark M.B.E., a local councillor for many years and Paul Brewster of the Summit Bookshop.

Contact me

If you would like to discuss anything to do with local matters or the election, please click here for contact details.

#128003 • 10/24/2010 9:09am by Martin Brampton • Vote: Agree (249) Disagree (122)