Don't miss a story sign up to Sidmouth Herald's FREE daily newsletter CLICK HERE

Campaigners welcome council filming move

17:23 19 August 2014

Archant

Campaigners have welcomed new rules which they say will help ‘demonstrate the lack of openness and puerile debate’ in local government.

The ‘right to report’ legislation, which came into force last week, allows members of the public to film, record and tweet live from meetings.

The news has been heralded as a major advance by campaigners from the East Devon Alliance (EDA) and Save Our Sidmouth (SOS), as well as East Devon District Council (EDDC) which says the new rules will enhance transparency.

Richard Thurlow, chairman of SOS, said the group intended to use the opportunity ‘to its fullest extent’.

He added: “This is extremely helpful as it will enable the public to record public EDDC meetings and demonstrate the lack of openness, often childish and puerile debate and steamroller tactics used.”

EDA chairman Paul Arnott said that the changes represented an ‘overdue reform’ but added that they would help to encourage democracy in local government.

He said: “This means that EDDC’s inadequate and even hostile replies to questions raised legitimately can be exposed to wider public scrutiny by council tax payers.

“Similarly, as open debates will be recorded by the public, councillors may decide to adopt a mature and courteous approach to each other and to the public.”

The rules apply to any public meeting held by town, parish, district and county councils and take effect immediately.

People wishing to film or record are not required to inform the council in advance.

Government guidelines encourage members of the public to let staff know so any necessary arrangements can be made.

An EDDC spokesman said: “We live in a modern digital world where the use of modern communication methods such as filming and tweeting should be embraced for enhancing the openness and transparency of local government.”

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Sidmouth Herald visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Sidmouth Herald staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Sidmouth Herald account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Other News Stories

Yesterday, 16:59
Dropped kerb could soon be installed opposite Abbeyfield Court in Sidmouth

Appeal from residents to assist people with mobility problems has been listened to

Read more
Yesterday, 16:30
The Sid Valley Neighbourhood Plan logo

The protection of the Sid Valley’s natural beauty is among residents’ top concerns, a major questionnaire has revealed.

Read more
Yesterday, 15:39
Hot Pennies is a traditional part of Sidbury Fair week. Ref shs 0906-38-15SH. Picture: Simon Horn

Organisers of Sidbury Fair Week are looking forward to another packed programme to bring the community together.

Read more
Yesterday, 14:25
Mark Wakely is counting on your votes.

Public support has sent a Sidmouth plumber into the final of a national competition.

Read more
Yesterday, 12:33

Criminals attempted to break into an empty property in Sidmouth.

Read more
Yesterday, 11:18
St Saviours

Plans for vacant St Saviours get green light

Read more
Yesterday, 10:35
Nathan Riley.

A little boy was left with five stitches in his leg after cutting himself on a broken, abandoned, disposable barbecue on Sidmouth beach.

Read more
Tue, 16:30

Vandals threw a bench, a sign, large logs and a red bike into the River Sid over the weekend.

Read more
Tue, 13:16
The Tour of Britain stage start on Sidmouth seafront in 2013. Bradley Wiggins is pictured centre in the yellow jersey. Photo by Simon Horn. Ref shs 9563-38-13SH

‘The race has just gone up another notch in the thrill stakes’

Read more
Tue, 12:30
Former England cricket captain Andrew Strauss presenting Dom Bess with his cap

CREDIT: @englandcricket

The Sri Lankan under-19s captain was caught out by a Sidford teenager making his international cricket debut last week.

Read more

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 20°C

min temp: 17°C

Most Read News

Useful Links

Family notices
Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Submit a Story
Buy Photos
Competitions
iwitness24
Facebook
Twitter
Google Plus Page
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Read Online

Image
Read the Sidmouth Herald e-edition E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up

Local business directory

Devon's trusted business finder

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists


Find planning applications