Excess work forces Doncaster parish council clerk out

Rossington Medival Festival
Rossington Medival Festival
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The clerk of a Doncaster parish council has quit after just five months - saying the workload was too heavy.

Jim Beaumont, a former local government worker, completed his one month’s notice period on Friday as clerk to Rossington Parish Council.

He was unaware the council chairman had just cancelled a music festival booked for this month because of lack of interest.

Some Rossington residents have expressed concern about the amount of money being spent on events in the village but Mr Beaumont would not say if that had anything to do with his resignation.

At his Cusworth home, he explained his departure after such a short tenure by saying: “The main reason is I have been working 35 to 40 hours a week, instead of the 16 hours on my contract.

“When the job was advertised it was for 16 hours a week for the parish council and four hours a week for the Memorial Hall, and it was double that. I’ve had enough.”

The Rossington Music Festival 2013, due to take place at Rossington Miners’ Welfare this weekend, has been cancelled at a cost to the council of more than £5,000.

It is only a fortnight since the council promoted a medieval festival at the Miners’ Welfare.

The music festival, featuring headliners from The Jam and Wishbone Ash, was billed as the summer’s top musical gathering in Doncaster.

Organiser Richard Cooper-Holmes, chair of the parish council, said: “I regret to say our festival is cancelled.

“After spending over £5,500 on advertising, offering cheap tickets and an extensive internet campaign, with eight days left we have sold only 35 tickets.”

He said the minimum cost of running the festival would have been £47,000 so there would be no prospect of recouping it.

“Everyone in showbiz told me this shouldn’t fail and with the strong line-up we had we should get 1,500 to 2,500 attending, especially with the advertising that has gone on with a radio campaign, banners, posters, leaflets and we even had 20,000 beer mats distributed.

“It appears people want something for nothing.”