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'We're the poor cousin'- town being forgotten in favour of Norfolk neighbour, councillor claims

PUBLISHED: 14:33 06 February 2020 | UPDATED: 16:01 06 February 2020

Josie Ratcliffe, borough councillor for Downham Market East. Picture: Liberal Democrats.

Josie Ratcliffe, borough councillor for Downham Market East. Picture: Liberal Democrats.

LIberal Democrats

A market town has been left behind as it is the "poor cousin" of its Norfolk neighbour, a councillor has claimed.

Independent shops in Downham Market were broken into. Picture: Matthew Usher.Independent shops in Downham Market were broken into. Picture: Matthew Usher.

Members of Downham Market town council expressed their frustration over a report delivered by their borough councillor, Josie Ratcliffe at a town council meeting which they felt overlooked the town.

Ms Ratcliffe, who represents Downham Market East, spoke at a Downham Market town council meeting on Tuesday, February 4 about recent decisions at west Norfolk council which mainly included reports of King's Lynn.

She informed councillors and members of the public how King's Lynn is set to benefit from improvements to the town centre and a recently agreed transport strategy.

She added that there is a tree planting motion for Downham but the status of that is unknown.

Her report was met with criticism after members of the town council expressed their frustration over the lack of information regarding Downham Market.

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Councillor Cissy Lightfoot responded: "It seems appalling that you're our borough councillor and you've told us about King's Lynn.

"So what's happening with Downham Market?"

Ms Ratcliffe, said that although representatives for Downham Market are trying there is "no momentum for change at the moment" at the borough council.

Adding: "We can present change but they're not getting accepted.

"You're right, we do appear to be the poor cousin of King's Lynn."

Town mayor Becky Hayes felt ongoing communications with borough were positive and that the town council were "making little steps in the right direction."

She said: "We have been banging on about Downham. 
"It is difficult and we are doing are best and highlighting the issues of Downham in our meetings and we will continue to do so."

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