RESIDENTS in Bromsgrove could have more opportunities to quiz councillors and council officers in person once the coronavirus pandemic restrictions are eased long-term.

Bromsgrove District Council is looking into the possibility of quarterly ward meetings at the request of Rubery councillor Peter McDonald, who says it would bring residents greater understanding of the council's workings.

Cllr McDonald told the Advertiser: "It is time Bromsgrove District Council brought the Council to closer to its citizens with meetings consisting of officers and councillors through ward meetings that would take place throughout the whole of the district.

"Residents expect more from services as their council tax increase year on year and expect to be able to engage with the council with some purpose.

"Therefore, officers and councillors need to produce information in a way that can be understood and provides some explanation of the issues that concern residents, moving away from a centralised culture and bringing the council closer to the people.

"It would also give residents an increased understanding of the functioning of the council and an insight of how the Council works and indeed spends council tax payers’ money.

"Recognising this, and that community leadership is at the heart of modern local government, I will be asking at the next council meeting that Bromsgrove District Council holds three meetings a year in each ward throughout the district to develop a vision for their local area and to work collaboratively to improve services and quality of life for residents.

"It’s time that both councillors and officers meet residents eye to eye to engage residents in decision-making."

In response, Council Leader Karen May said: “This Council is always keen to engage with our residents and following this suggestion from Cllr McDonald we are working with officers to look at the logistics of holding these sessions and rolling them out in the wards across our district with the support of other members.”