Archive for News

Town Council gains vacant possession of 60 King Street

Knutsford Town Council has now gained vacant possession of 60 King Street. La Belle Epoque Limited vacated the premises by 4pm on Sunday (16th) when the Town Council entered the building and took possession. This marked the end of four challenging years between the council as landlord and La Belle Epoque Limited as tenant which had included the non-payment of rent, unauthorised alterations and frustration of essential repairs.

Notwithstanding the message, the council was extremely disappointed that La Belle Epoque put the public at risk by hanging two banners off the Gaskell Memorial Tower on Friday afternoon. When the banners were removed it was apparent that the wood used to weight the banners was close to falling off and down onto King Street. 

Moving Forward

Following an options appraisal, the Town Council has resolved to progress finding a new tenant to occupy the building. It is anticipated that the building will be let on a full repairing and insuring lease, removing the obligation on the town council of being responsible for the building’s maintenance. It is anticipated that as a result of the change in lease the council will save taxpayers money by offsetting the required council tax.

During the next few weeks the Town Council will be agreeing the heads of terms for a new leasing arrangement and appointing a commercial estate agent to market the property. It is anticipated that the property will be advertised in late July/early August.

Whilst the property is empty, the council will utilise the window space for local businesses to host pop-up window displays, something the council encourages other landlords with vacant properties to do, to reduce the visual impact of empty shops on the high street.

Cllr Andrew Malloy, Town Mayor said “This marks the end of four years of dispute with our former tenant. The council takes no joy in the outcome but looks to the future in securing a new occupier for this iconic Knutsford building”. 

Cllr Peter Coan, Chairman of the council’s Assets and Operations Committee added “This presents us with an opportunity to re-let the property on more favourable terms for the local council tax payers. We look forward to a new occupancy with a tenant that will secure for the town a vibrant centre piece we can truly be proud of”. 

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Publication of Unaudited Accounts



Local Audit and Accountability Act 2014 Sections 26 and 27
The Accounts and Audit Regulations 2015 (SI 2015/234)

1.Date of announcement Monday 10th June 2019

2. Each year the smaller authority’s Annual Governance and Accountability Return (AGAR) needs to be reviewed by an external auditor appointed by Smaller Authorities’ Audit Appointments Ltd. The unaudited AGAR has been published with this notice. As it has yet to be reviewed by the appointed auditor, it is subject to change as a result of that review.

Any person interested has the right to inspect and make copies of the accounting records for the financial year to which the audit relates and all books, deeds, contracts, bills, vouchers, receipts and other documents relating to those records must be made available for inspection by any person interested. For the year ended 31 March 2019, these documents will be available on reasonable notice by application to:

Adam Keppel-Green, Town Clerk
Council Offices, Toft Road, Knutsford, WA16 6TA – 01565 653 929

commencing on Monday 17 June 2019
and ending on Friday 26 July 2019

3.Local government electors and their representatives also have:

  • The opportunity to question the appointed auditor about the accounting records; and
  • The right to make an objection which concerns a matter in respect of which the appointed auditor could either make a public interest report or apply to the court for a declaration that an item of account is unlawful. Written notice of an objection must first be given to the auditor and a copy sent to the smaller authority.

The appointed auditor can be contacted at the address in paragraph 4 below for this purpose between the above dates only.

4.The smaller authority’s AGAR is subject to review by the appointed auditor under the provisions of the Local Audit and Accountability Act 2014, the Accounts and Audit Regulations 2015 and the NAO’s Code of Audit Practice 2015. The appointed auditor is:

PKF Littlejohn LLP (Ref: SBA Team)
1 Westferry Circus, Canary Wharf
E14 4HD

This announcement is made by Adam Keppel-Green, Town Clerk and Responsible Financial Officer

You can view the unaudited AGAR here: 2018/19 Annual Governance  and Accounting  Records

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D-Day Commemorations – Thursday 6th June

Mayor of Knutsford Cllr Andrew Malloy will be leading a short act of remembrance to mark the 75th anniversary of D-Day. The Mayor, joined by town councillors and representatives of the Knutsford Royal British Legion, will be laying a wreath at the Centennial War Memorial at 5:30pm on Thursday 6th June.

Two Knutsfordians remembered on the memorial died on D-Day, Lieutenant George Frederick Peters and Private Sydney Stringer Walton, both of the Parachute Regiment Air Army Corps.

Members of the public are invited to join this short act of remembrance.

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La Belle Epoque, 60 King Street – Update

Further to our update on 16th April, the Town Council and La Belle Epoque Limited have agreed the following:

  • La Belle Epoque has accepted that its lease for 60 King Street has been forfeit
  • It has been agreed that the company will vacate the premises by 4pm on 16th June 2019.

This is the culmination of four years of problems with the company as tenant which have included non-payment of rent, unauthorised alterations to the building and numerous court proceedings. There remains a substantial amount of money owed to the Town Council by La Belle Epoque in respect of legal fees owed to us in enforcing the former lease.

Any individuals with bookings with the company after this date should be in contact with La Belle Epoque. For the avoidance of doubt, booking agreements are solely between the company and the hirer and not with the Town Council.

There will be a period of time, likely between 3-6 months, where the property is unoccupied, and the Town Council is unfortunately unable to offer the premises to hire during this period.

In June, the Assets and Operations Committee of the Town Council will discuss the long-term management of the property.

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Final Come Dine with the Mayor

Cllr Peter Coan, Mayor of Knutsford, today launched his final fundraising event of his Mayoral term: “Come Dine with the Mayor” which will take place in the evening of Thursday 16 May.  Giovanni’s are hosting the meal and will be offering a delicious 3 course menu with tea and coffee and an arrival glass of Prosecco.

Tickets are priced £23.00 per person and all proceeds raised go to support the Mayor’s local charities: Friends of the Moor, Knutsford Community First Responder Trust, The Welcome and Knutsford Heritage Centre.

For more information visit: or contact the Mayor’s PA Annabel Irvine: 01565 653 929;

Cllr Peter Coan the Mayor said: “I do hope you will be able to join me for my final fundraising event.  I’ve had an amazing year and am set to raise a record amount for my local charities.  Book now and help me to end my Mayoral year in style!”

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Co-option of a Councillor

Following the uncontested elections, a vacancy exists for a councillor for Over Ward.

The Town Council will co-opt to fill this vacancy at its meeting on Monday 3rd June at 7pm in the Council Offices.

If you would like to be considered for co-option as a councillor for the 2019-2023 term, please complete the application form below and return by email to: by Monday 20th May.

Application for Co-Option

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Update on 60 King Street

Knutsford Town Council is the freehold owner of the property at 60 King Street, commonly known as the Belle Epoque. Since 2015 the Town Council has encountered numerous problems with its former tenant at 60 King Street, La Belle Epoque Limited. These have included non-payment of rent, frustration of essential maintenance, unauthorised alterations to the building and numerous court proceedings. The council had tried to work with La Belle Epoque to reach resolution on issues to no resolve.

La Belle Epoque Limited entered into a Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA) which was accepted by their notified creditors on 19th February 2019.  The Town Council was not included or notified of the CVA.

In entering into the CVA, La Belle Epoque Limited, by their own action, have forfeited their lease for 60 King Street.  Following legal advice and conscious of our responsibilities to the taxpayers of Knutsford the council does not deem it wise to enter into a new lease with an insolvent company and as such the decision was taken to issue possession proceedings against La Belle Epoque for return of the premises.

The relationship of landlord and tenant between the Town Council and La Belle Epoque is at an end. La Belle Epoque remain in the premises effectively as a trespasser until the Court grant formal possession of 60 King Street to the Town Council. The possession hearing is due to take place on 15th May 2019. It is therefore likely that La Belle Epoque will need to vacate the premises by the end of May and the building will then revert to the Council.

In June, following the newly elected councillors coming into office in late May, the Town Council will discuss the long-term management of the property. There will be a period of time, likely between 3-6 months, where the property is unoccupied, and the Town Council is unfortunately unable to offer the premises to hire during this period.

The Town Council has spoken with a number of wedding parties who had bookings at the property. Our advice is:

  • If you have wedding insurance, speak with your insurers
  • If you made payments to the company on credit card, speak with your card providers
  • Seek legal advice
  • Speak with Cheshire East Council’s registration department – changing premises will require new notice be given for the marriage


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Town Council Elections Uncontested

No polls will be held for the Town Council elections in May with all wards being uncontested. This means the persons detailed below will automatically be elected on May 2nd and come into office the following week.

There remains one vacancy for Over Ward, which the Town Council will fill by co-option in June/July. You can express interest in filling this vacancy by emailing the Town Clerk:

Bexton Ward

COAN, Barbara24 Mansion DriveThe Conservative Party Candidate
HOUGHTON, Mike167 Ashworth ParkThe Conservative Party Candidate
POWER, James9 County Terrace, Stanley RoadThe Conservative Party Candidate

Nether Ward

FLETCHER, Katherine83 Manchester RoadThe Conservative Party Candidate
GARDINER, Stewart23 Queen StreetThe Conservative Party Candidate
GRAY, Christopher 8 Glebelands RoadThe Conservative Party Candidate

Norbury Booths Ward

ABEL, Quentin11 St John's RoadIndependent
NICHOLSON, Jan39 Warren AvenueThe Conservative Party Candidate
ROBERTSON, Matthew17 Beggarman’s LaneThe Conservative Party Candidate

Over Ward

COAN, PeterMerridale, Plumley Moor Road, PlumleyThe Conservative Party Candidate
DALZELL, Lesley2 Leycester RoadIndependent
FORBES, Neil69 Westfield DriveThe Conservative Party Candidate
MALLOY, Andrew29 Thorneyholme DriveIndependent
MCCULLOCH, James10 Gaskell RiseThe Conservative Party Candidate


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Town Council Elections 2019

The notice of the 2019 Town Council elections has now been published, giving potential candidates until 4pm on Wednesday 3rd April to stand for election.

Elections are being held for all 15 seats on the Town Council – all existing councillors retire from the council and must stand for election if they wish to continue and a number of the current councillors will not be seeking re-election.

The election for any contested wards will take place on Thursday 2nd May.

Can I stand for election?

To stand for election you must be at least 18 years old, a British citizen, European Union citizen or eligible Commonwealth citizen. You must meet one of the following qualifications

  1. Be a registered elector in Knutsford OR
  2. Have occupied  as owner/tenant land or premises in Knutsford for the whole of the past 12 months OR
  3. Knutsford is your only or main place of work during the past 12 months OR
  4. You lived within three miles of the parish boundary during the whole of the past 12 months

You would be disqualified for standing if you are employed by the council, are subject to bankruptcy restrictions, have been sentenced to more than three months in prison during the last five years or if you have ever been disqualified for corrupt or illegal electoral practises.

How do the wards affect the election?

Knutsford is divided into four electoral wards – Over, Bexton, Nether and Norbury Booths. You can view a map of the wards here: Knutsford Ward Map.

Each ward elects 3 councillors, except Over which elects 6. Candidates must stand in any ward – they don’t have to live in that specific part of town. Voters in each ward will chose from the candidates standing in their area – Over Ward can vote for up to six councillors, the others up to three.

How do I stand?

To stand you must complete a nomination form, which you can download here: Nomination Forms.

You will need an elector from the ward you wish to stand in to propose you and a second person to second you. You then need to hand deliver your form to the elections staff at Cheshire East Council’s Sandbach office – by 4pm on Wednesday 3rd April.



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Neighbourhood Plan approved at Referendum

The Knutsford Neighbourhood Plan has been approved at a referendum held yesterday (14th March). The culmination of over four years of work by the Town Council and volunteer residents, the Neighbourhood Plan now forms part of the development plan for Knutsford, meaning it must be used by Cheshire East Council to make planning decisions.

2100 voters turned out to cast ballots at the referendum, representing a turnout of 19.97%. 1744 votes were cast in favour with 349 against and 7 ballot papers rejected.

Town Clerk, Adam Keppel-Green said “I am delighted that the community has given the Neighbourhood Plan the seal of approval. The plan injects Knutsford’s voice into the planning system and gives more influence to community in shaping how Knutsford will develop over the coming years.”

Developing the plan was a key strategic aim of the council and saw  hundreds of hours of volunteer, councillor and officer time dedicated to its creation since 2014.

“On behalf of the whole council, I would like to thank all the volunteers who have been involved in the working groups which helped create the policies in the plan and all the residents who have taken part in the consultations, attended meetings or asked questions that have helped shape this plan.” Adam added.


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