Residents' survey findings accurate insists council leader

A new survey showing how satisfied residents are with the Royal Borough provides an accurate ‘snapshot’ of the area’s population, the council leader has insisted.

The council-commissioned polling shows 88 per cent of people are satisfied with the area, 74 per cent are satisfied with the council and that 68 per cent have trust in it.

That compares to national findings by the Local Government Association from October 2018, which reported 78, 60 and 57 per cent for those values respectively.

In a statement, Cllr Simon Dudley said: “These results demonstrate that residents are happy with the services the council deliver and they offer good value for money.

“Our budget proposals for next year have taken into account the results from the residents’ survey and we have continued to invest in roads, bins, and parks and open spaces, which reflects what we have been told by our residents is important to them.

“The council will use this feedback to reshape how we deliver services in the future.”

The report shows that people in Maidenhead are less satisfied with living in their area, less satisfied with how the council runs things, less likely to speak positively about the council and less likely to agree the council provides value for money.

Cllr Dudley said that the ‘south of the borough is completely zen’ by comparison – but insisted the document can guide policy decisions.

“What we want at the end of the day – clearly, we want to get re-elected,” Cllr Dudley said, adding that residents want to ‘feel good’ about Maidenhead and the borough.

“We know from this what is important to our residents.”

Cllr Dudley insisted the poll, conducted by DJS Research, was accurate and that if it had come back negative, the council would have published the results.

The poll was carried out between August 27 and October 26, and included responses from 1,650 residents.

The sample was designed to be representative of the population by age, gender, ethnicity, housing tenure type and socio-economic status.

Leader of the opposition Cllr Lynne Jones (Ind, Old Windsor) pointed to how parts of the borough such as Maidenhead are less happy. The report shows that ‘one in five will speak negatively of the council and this is even more the case amongst residents of Maidenhead’.

“I think you can spin any statistics you want,” Cllr Jones said. “Residents’ surveys are fine to a point. They are just a snapshot of certain people.”

But she knew of some residents who had told her they had refused to speak about the council when called.

“There is a place for them [surveys] but I would not base any serious decision making on them.”

Visit https://tinyurl. com/y97omzrm to see the report.

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