It’s sometimes difficult to know what elements of village facilities are solely the responsibility of the Parish Council. The Borough Council provides very few leisure services within the village which means that a large amount of money raised each year is spent on amenities such as parks & pavilions, open spaces & play areas along with various sports facilities. The only area provided by the Borough Council is the Ling Crescent / St. Mary’s Crescent field.
During the growing season, our staff spend a large amount of time grass cutting and generally keeping these areas in good condition. It is perhaps not appreciated that Flawford and St. Peter’s Churchyards are also our responsibility and although at present members of the congregation look after the gardens at St. Peter’s, the mature trees do need regular specialist attention and this does not come cheap. Vicarage Lane cemetery also belongs to the Parish Council.
Each summer you will notice hanging baskets in the central area of the village and illuminated Christmas trees in winter. Whilst these are bought and installed by the Parish Council, donations to defray the cost are collected from participating businesses.
St. Peter’s Rooms are rented at a peppercorn rent, but we are required to maintain this Listed Building. Along with the Village Hall, these facilities are much loved and well used, and offer excellent value for money to hirers.
Although a target for vandals, children’s play equipment is provided and maintained by the Parish Council at three locations and during this coming year enhancements are being made at around £70,000. In areas of capital expenditure, we look outside the village for additional funding. By some standards Ruddington is regarded as an “affluent” village and can be excluded in some cases, but with regard to play equipment we have recently been provisionally offered a grant of £30,000. However, we are still looking for further funding.
As we are all aware, during the coming year all local authorities are going to find funding difficult and we will have to ensure that we spend the council tax wisely. We have set the precept at £97.80 for a band D property which represents a slight reduction on last year. A statement of the Parish Council Estimated Expenditure & Income 2010/11 will be included with your Council Tax bill.