In total, the nine elected members who represent Ascot, Sunningdale and Sunningdale, either on the Royal Borough or Bracknell Forest Council, did not show up at more than 16% of full council, committee and panel meetings between May 2013-March 2014.
In total, the nine councillors missed 48 of the 299 appointments at full council, planning and committee meetings in 2013/14, with two councillors missing more than one in five meetings.
Cllr Peter Comber, of Sunninghill and South Ascot ward in the Royal Borough, only managed to attend 65.5% of his meetings, missing 10 in total – the lowest percentage of all councillors covering Ascot, Sunninghill and Sunningdale.
However, he explained that he had been away on holidays for the majority of the council meetings he had missed.
He said: “I take my attendance at these meetings very seriously. It is unfortunate that the meetings are so packed into a short period that it has a knock on effect on my attendance record.”
Cllr John Story, of Sunninghill and South Ascot ward, was the only councillor across all four wards to attend every meeting he was expected at.
However, despite being due at 63 meetings – at least 24 more than any other councillor – Cllr Christine Bateson, chief whip of the Royal Borough and of Sunningdale ward, missed only eight throughout the year, managing to make 87.3% of her meetings. She said: “I try to go to as many as possible. Sometimes
I have two meetings on, one from an outside body, and so
some of the councillors who haven’t attended all the meetings often have had other meet-
ings. That’s why they haven’t been able to go – you can’t be in two places at once.
“It’s about helping the community and all the councillors want to do that and they all attend as many meetings as possible. I’m very pleased with my record and I shall be continuing to do so.”
Cllr Lynda Yong, of Sunninghill and South Ascot ward, missed only four of her meetings, making 88.6%.
She said she works closely with fellow ward councillors Cllr Story and Cllr Comber to make sure at least one of them is always present at meetings.