Agenda and draft minutes
Venue: Council Chamber - Town Hall
Contact: Jean Sharp (01277 312655)
Apologies for Absence
Apologies for absence were received from Cllrs Hirst, Dr Naylor and Tee.
Declaration of Interest from Members and Officers
There were no declarations of interest from Members or Officers but the Mayor acknowledged that those nominated to be awarded the honours were known to many Members and Officers.
Report to follow.
A special meeting of the Council had been called in order to confer honorary titles under section 249 of the Local Government Act 1972.
Members noted that the titles of ‘Honorary Alderwomen’ or ‘Honorary Aldermen’ were conferred in recognition of eminent past services to the Council.
The role attracted no remuneration and involved no entitlement to take part in decision-making. Holders of these titles might attend and take part in such civic ceremonies as the Council decided.
To be eligible for the honorary title of Honorary Alderwoman or Honorary Alderman, the person nominated must be a former councillor of this Council and not be currently a member of the Council. In addition, the person nominated must in the opinion of the Council have rendered ‘eminent services to the council’.
‘Eminent services’ connoted making a positive difference or impact over and above the carrying out of mere normal council duties to a basic or acceptable standard i.e. being ‘distinguished’ for proper reasons and in the service to the Council.
The Council could also recognise distinguished service to the Borough through admission to the honorary title of ‘Honorary Freewoman’ or ‘Honorary Freeman’ of the Borough.
The title was honorary only and was one of the highest honours that the Council could bestow.
To be eligible to be admitted as an Honorary Freewoman or Honorary Freeman, those nominated must be persons of distinction and persons who have, in the opinion of the Council, rendered eminent services to the place or area i.e. the Borough.
“Eminent services” need to relate to the Borough, not the Council, in the context of whether to admit as an Honorary Freewoman or Honorary Freeman.
It was through this means that organisations were awarded the Freedom of the Borough. Traditionally this honour was associated with the right of Freedom of Entry for military units with the right to march, with bayonets fixed, band playing and colours flying.
The Freedom of the Borough with the traditionally associated Freedom of Entry was achieved through the use of section 249 of the Local Government Act 1972 to admit the organisation to the honorary title of ‘Freewoman or Freeman’ of the Borough
Cllr Aspinell MOVED and Cllr Lloyd SECONDED recommendations 2.1 and 2.2. A vote was taken on a show of hands and it was RESOLVED that:
1. In pursuance of section 249(1) of the Local Government Act 1972 and in recognition of the Council being of the opinion that eminent services have been rendered to the Council by former Councillors Valerie Fletcher and Anne Long, the Council confers on each of them the title of Honorary Alderwoman.
2. In pursuance of section 249(1) of the Local Government Act 1972 and in recognition of the Council being of the opinion that eminent services have been rendered to the Council by former Councillors Derek Hardy, Keith Brown (of Ingatestone), David Minns, and Ken Wright, the Council confers on each of them the title of Honorary Alderman.
Cllr Mrs Davies MOVED and Cllr Aspinell ... view the full minutes text for item 504.
To consider any matter which, by reason of special circumstances to be specified in the minutes of the meeting, the Mayor considers should be considered at the meeting as a matter of urgency.
There were no items of urgent business.
The meeting ended at 19.15 hrs.