The Chairman of Wealden District Council, Brian Redman, paid tribute to some of the council’s achievements this year at a Christmas reception held in the Civic Community Hall, Hailsham.
“We do many things in this council which are not recognised,” said Cllr Redman. “In my duties as chairman, I meet lots of people who are impressed by the amazing things we do. And these are mainly on account of the exceptional staff we have.
“This is one occasion when we can recognise some of good work council staff do.”
The event was attended by Wealden District Councillors and the Mayors of Hailsham and Uckfield. It was followed by a carol concert by Hailsham Choral Society.
The District’s Leisure Centres at Crowborough, Hailsham, Uckfield and Heathfield, run for the Council by Freedom Leisure, have benefitted from £7.4 million of improvements and the finishing touches are taking place to 64 new council homes which have been built by Wealden in Wilmington, Crowborough and Forest Row – the council’s first in more than 30 years.
The District’s Local Plan is the first to be adopted in the county, and 670 new homes have been provided in the district over the past year. These are expected to bring with them over £150 million of much needed investment to the local economy.
The council’s procurement team, which helps source goods and services, is on course to generate more that £4 million in savings and revenue for Sussex councils, while the council’s finance service has been able to make over £1 million of VAT savings for the Council and business ratepayers.
Cllr Redman chairman paid tribute to the way the customer contact centre and waste management teams had helped residents during the restructuring of the refuse and recycling rounds this summer. They had handled an unprecedented number of phone calls and emails in difficult circumstances. Average waiting times at the contact centre were now down to 16 seconds and over 99 per cent of bins were being collected on time.
The Chairman also paid tribute to the partnership working Wealden was involved in with many parish and town councils, neighbouring local authorities and the private sector.
The council has developed strong ties with the Wealden District Association of Local Councils (WDALC), and through close working with Uckfield and Hailsham Town Councils, as well as East Sussex County Council, was bringing important infrastructure improvements to these two areas.