Arts Festival - Mornflake marquee Schoolsfest

Nantwich Town councillors have narrowly voted to pay £7,000 towards a consultant to get a proposed Youth Arts Festival off the ground.

The festival idea was proposed by councillors Geoff Smith and John Priest in March.

They hope it will help fill the gap left by the popular “Schools Fest” (pictured) which used to take place in the town pre-Covid.

They are bidding for £7,000 towards paying a consultant to take the lead on organising the first event.

But some town councillors voiced concerns over the funding, saying it lacked a proper plan and that there were many volunteers in the town who could help organise it.

Cllr Caroline Kirkham said: “I have concerns about this. I can’t see any project plan or costing proposals behind this at the moment.

“It needs a bit more work before we can commit to that sort of funding – what is the feasibility of this project?

“We have great festivals in the town which are run by volunteers, have we had feedback from them? I think there needs to be a better project plan before agreeing to £7k spend.”

Cllr Priest replied: “We are looking for someone who can provide that structure and framework, to pull together all the various strands.”

Cllr Anna Burton told Cllrs Smith and Priest: “A lot of the town events are built on volunteers and are community-led.

“There are lot of skilled people in the town who could give advice. You should have faith in yourselves rather than having to pay for someone from outside.

“I have concerns about the town council spending on something we don’t even know if it’s even viable.

“The idea is good, but seeking money for a consultant does not seem to be the right way.”

Cllr Smith replied: “I would not be able to commit then time to it, I just don’t have the capacity to do this, I am not a specialist in organising events.”

Town councillors voted five in favour of the motion to fund a consultant and four voted against.


  1. Janet Smith says:

    This is an opportunity to engage young people who may not usually have access to opportunities. It’s an opportunity for young people to be diverted from anti social behaviour and an opportunity for children to learn more about their town. Good luck to all involved I can’t wait to see it develop

  2. Another hair-brained scheme, why do we need to get a “consultant in” when there are many people already involved in the music and arts Festival scheme in Nantwich I am sure there could be a number of professionals around to come up with ideas.
    Then there is money for this voted in with a slim majority what about the scheme for the Dabbers Running group to have a proper path built around the missing section of the Barony? Or is that something else promised and fails to materialise

  3. Paul Peters says:

    If you think that’s bad how about nearly a quarter of a million (£230k) spent on revamping the toilets behind Home Bargains, destined to be vandalised and put beyond use again any day now.

  4. We have lived through COVID 19 Crisis which cost the government an additional 400 billion pounds. The Ukraine War with Russia resulted in a rate of inflation which has adversely impacted on households finances. Families have been squeezed financially. Council Tax increased in Cheshire East by 4.99% in April. An increase above the current rate of inflation. We live in tougher times. Increases in mortgage rates, food prices, property and contents insurance premiums, and car insurance rising well above rates of inflation. There are many other areas where prices have gone up considerably. Sadly we all pay taxes on gross income after personal allowances which have been frozen.
    There was a price to pay for COVID and the financial support given to so many. The same applies to support for increasing energy costs.
    So why in a time of financial constraints does Nantwich Town Council decide to explore ‘a nice to do.’
    Why not focus on delivering key services.
    Anti social behaviour in the town is common place. Why not considering paying for two PCSO to ensure the problem of anti social behaviour gets tackled. You very rarely see a Police Officer or PCSO walking the streets of the town.
    In the last two weeks crossing a road using the controlled crossing I could have been hit by a electric bike going through the traffic lights on red. It is not the first time I have evidenced anti social behaviour. This was in the daytime.
    Lets get the priorities right.
    Lets cut waste which the Town Council seem very good at.
    I have always said I don’t mind paying tax, I object to moneys being frittered away.
    Well done to the Counsellors who voted against this expenditure of £7000.00.
    Counsellors and how they voted should be paid public information.. This will enable the voters to make informed and balanced decisions on actions taken by our representatives.

  5. Wow utterly epic fail here, in come two Labour councillors suggesting a reckless vote to spend £7k plus on a scheme they did not have actual evidence and information on that it would be money well spent when we already have a massive band of volunteers living in the town that could have put forward ideas, shockingly this idea was not considered, why are Labour hell bent on spending our money on vanity projects without due care and consultation. We already have a number of youth projects, and I am sure there are up and running organisations like the famous Gang Show we have that would welcome the chance to showcase locally what talent and ideas we have here

  6. Geoff Stockton says:

    Always ready to throw money away like the fountain they put in the lake a few years ago

  7. Sadly Nantwich Town Council do not learn from their own incompetence.
    Yet another example of a waste of hard earned tax payers money.
    I wonder whether these idiots would spend their own money so quickly.
    I agree with those counsellors who have challenged this decision.
    All these pet projects cost money when you add the total cost it amounts to a considerable amount.
    I admire those four counsellors who voted against this motion.
    The people of Nantwich is blessed with talented people who I am sure offer their professional expertise at minimal cost to the council tax payer.
    The Town Council is suppose to have a policy of public consultation.
    It is a tool they could apply when considering potential projects.

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