A campaign to create a High Wycombe Town Council is gaining momentum amid frustration over a lack of ‘passion’ to improve local services.

Former Wycombe mayors Trevor Snaith and Khalil Ahmed first launched a petition calling for the creation of a local town council back in 2018.

After a tumultuous few years, including the folding of Wycombe District Council and relegation of power to Buckinghamshire County Council, based in Aylesbury, the two locals have still not fulfilled their aim – but they’re far from throwing in the towel.

A new consultation ‘Your Voice, Your Town’, asking whether residents in the unparished area want a town council will close on April 7, and Trevor, 69, and Khalil, 52, are working overtime to spread the word and encourage people to have their opinions heard.

High Wycombe is currently governed by the county council, its ward councillors, the High Wycombe Town Committee, charter trustees and the High Wycombe Community Board.

Speaking at an event held today, Saturday, March 9, to raise awareness of the consultation, Trevor said organisations like the committee and the community board were “toothless” and not capable of sufficiently addressing real issues in the town.

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He added: “All they can do is talk shop and then wait to get approval from Buckinghamshire Council. A functioning town council would take over and manage key assets, it would improve the market and the museum and look after historic buildings and our green spaces.

“You want local people who are passionate about tackling local issues. Since we got rid of Wycombe District, there’s been a void because we don’t have that lower level.”

Trevor said he was concerned that a detail on the consultation form warning residents of increased council tax costs might put some off supporting the campaign – and was keen to stress the value for money and reasonableness of such a change.

“The extra cost will be around the same as one cup of coffee a week. Most people I speak to do want a town council. Something you hear often is that if we don’t do anything, things will just continue as they are in this town – and people don’t want that.”

The chair of the council’s standards and general purposes committee, David Goss, said: “We’re encouraging everyone who lives in the unparished area of High Wycombe to look out for your letter containing the information booklet and survey.

“This is your opportunity to share your thoughts on how you and your community are represented.”

More information on the governance of High Wycombe and on how to have your say, can be found here: https://yourvoicebucks.citizenspace.com/corporate-services/high-wycombe-cgr/.