Hayling residents call for ‘Hexit’ in petition for island to have its own council

Island residents want their own council. Picture: Shaun Roster
Island residents want their own council. Picture: Shaun Roster

FORGET Brexit – it’s all about Hexit – one island’s attempt to break free from the borough council it is governed by.

Residents on Hayling Island have started a petition calling for the island to have its own council after long-term feelings the area is overlooked by Havant Borough Council.

The former chairman of the island’s residents’ group, Paul Fisher, said the area doesn't get its fair share of attention from the council.

He runs the Hayling Island Facebook page and added: ‘I’m passionately in favour of the island having its own council because though it provides a big chunk of revenue for the council it doesn’t see enough return.

‘The conversation about this was started in 1998 but there was fierce opposition from councillors and we never took the matter to petition.

‘The small, extra cost in council tax would be worth it because of the more efficient provision of services to the community we would get.’

For it to be debated at a full council meeting the petition needs 1,500 signatures.

It was started by Tina Lynn Tolmon-Young, 40, a Sandy Point resident who said: ‘I want to give residents the chance to have their say. It seems like this is what lots of people want.

‘It’s been talked about before but things are different post-Brexit. We’ve called it Hexit because it’s about taking back control of a little island.’

Sandra Homer, a 51-year-old West Town resident involved with the petition said: ‘We are fed up with overgrown grass verges, beaches with litter problems and bins overflowing.’

A parish council would have local powers like looking after play areas and car parks. It would get involved with planning and the delivery of better services. 

Council leader and Hayling West councillor Michael Wilson said: ‘I’ve considered the merits of a parish council for the area but the borough council works hard to provide services residents need while maintaining low council tax.

‘The administrative costs of a parish council would not mean improved services - just another tier of bureaucracy. The island is well-served by the council and community groups which provide more than the facilities provided in many areas with parish councils.’

Click here for the petition.