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A UKIP county councillor has questioned what benefits a Labour-backed town deal would bring to Burntwood.
Talks have been taking place between representatives and Staffordshire County Council.
The Conservative leader of Lichfield District Council, Mike Wilcox, responded to Labour’s push for a new deal for Burntwood by insisting the town will not be forgotten if Lichfield’s Friarsgate scheme gets the go-ahead.
But UKIP’s Cllr Jeff Sheriff, who has represented Burntwood South since 2013, believes any proposed developments for the town must be thought through carefully.
He said: “I have no idea what Labour is on about in regards to the Burntwood town deal.
“I do not understand why opposition group leader Sue Woodward is meeting with Staffordshire County Council leader Philip Atkins about this. What happens to Burntwood will be decided by Lichfield and Burntwood councillors – not Cllr Atkins.
“Burntwood does need a new town centre as it is a state at the moment.
“Years ago the town used to be full of vibrant little shops, but then planners allowed a Tesco to built, which ruined the area. Many of the shops closed or moved out of the town all together.”
But Labour has accused Cllr Sheriff of changing his tune.
Cllr Woodward said: “He has completely reversed what he said at the meeting with Cllr Atkins – he was on board and thought it was a helpful way forward for everyone to commit to pulling in the same direction, so he’s changed his mind very quickly.
“But I’m not surprised because he takes very little interest in Burntwood.
“Cllr Sheriff has not said a word about children’s centres, youth centres, or the closure of skills centres, so I suppose his view is hardly surprising.
“I don’t think his input into the town deal talks will be missed.”
Cllr Woodward has also challenged her UKIP counterpart to come up with solid ideas rather than sniping at the efforts of others.
“I’d like Jeff Sheriff to come up with a suggestion of something practical he can do in his position as a county councillor for Burntwood,” she said. “But I won’t hold my breath.”