Councillors agree to maintain status quo for civic roles

The new Mayor of Ponteland, Carl Rawlings, is congratulated by outgoing Mayor Peter Cowey.
The new Mayor of Ponteland, Carl Rawlings, is congratulated by outgoing Mayor Peter Cowey.

The Mayor of Ponteland has set out the up-coming issues that will have an impact on the town council and residents after being re-elected to the role.

Coun Carl Rawlings took on the position 12 months ago and at a recent meeting of the authority, he was chosen by his fellow councillors to be the Mayor for 2015/16.

He told the Herald afterwards that there was plenty to be pleased with during his first year thanks to the efforts of councillors, staff, contractors, businesses and residents who have volunteered their time for the good of the area.

Looking ahead to the future, he said: “Prestwick Cemetery is the town council’s responsibility, but one issue of concern is that the amount of burial space is finite and there may be a need to acquire more land in a few years.

“Residents have been consulted and a Neighbourhood Plan is being developed for Ponteland through a steering group – thanks go to all the volunteers in the group. Work is progressing and at some point a plan will be ready for evaluation by an independent planning inspector before a referendum is held.

“We are currently recruiting an additional contractor to keep Ponteland Park in tip-top condition and we are seeking more volunteer helpers to reduce litter in the area.”

Coun Rawlings is also looking to build upon the successes of the previous 12 months. For example, Ponteland won a gold medal in the 2014 Northumbria in Bloom competition.

Last November, a Remembrance exhibition in the Memorial Hall to mark 100 years since the start of the First World War attracted more than 500 people.

Other events attended by the Mayor included fund-raising concerts, Party in the Park and prize-giving ceremonies.

Also at the meeting, Coun Joyce Butcher was once again elected as Deputy Mayor.