A MOTION to propose extending speaking rights for people in meetings in the Ribble Valley will be debated next month.

Cllr Ged Mirfin, who represents Billington and Old Langho on Ribble Valley Council, said the current three minute slot should be extended to between five and seven minutes.

He said: “The current time limit of three minutes is utterly ludicrous, it simply is not long enough.

“Even for a member of the public trying to get across detailed arguments on a complex issue like planning it is extremely challenging.

“Not everyone has the ability to reduce complex arguments to their essentials nor are they all necessarily confident public speakers able to stand up and talk confidently in a public arena in front of a large audience.

“Even councillors who wish to speak on an agenda item on a committee, which they are not a member of can speak for five minutes.

“This is an anomaly which needs urgently addressing.”

The motion will be debated at the next full council meeting, which is set to take place on Tuesday, July 11, at the council’s chambers in Church Street, Clitheroe from 6.30pm.

Those who wish to speak at meetings must contact the council in advance, by calling 01200 425111 or emai contact@ribblevalley.gov.uk.