THE former leader of Darwen Town Council has hit out at councillors after he claimed that suggestions he made about Darwen Live were ignored.

Steve Duncan attended the council’s meeting this week and suggested a number of ways he thought the council could save cash at the festival.

Mr Duncan paid tribute at the meeting to deputy chairman Coun Trevor Maxfield for keeping the festival alive following the borough council’s decision to slash its funding.

He also suggested that the outdoor stage should be scrapped and instead the festival be played out at a number of indoor venues.

Later, he explained: “By looking at holding the event over a number of inside premises such as the leisure centre, Library Theatre, Darwen Academy, large pubs and social clubs, the event would benefit from a number of savings.

“Those would include the stage, security, toilets, policing, cleaning up and road closures.

“These costs probably represent some 70 to 75 per cent of the total costs.

“I was really disappointed with the response to my suggestions.”

Coun Maxfield said: “The police insist on one big stage and there has to be separate security for extra events.

“Pubs in the area do benefit from local bands who play while the event is on.

“Also, there would be no sponsor if there was no main stage.”