MORE than 130 people packed into Minehead’s Old Hospital for a heated annual town meeting on Tuesday night.

Many disgruntled residents made their feelings known, and there were even calls for the mayor, Cllr Jean Parbrook, to resign.

Two residents and members of the Minehead Community Group, Shonie Millward-Usher and Michael Burke made accusations of serious misconduct against the council which Cllr Parbrook said she ‘did not know anything about’ and dismissed as ‘fake news’.

It also emerged during the course of the meeting the Cllr Stephen Vine had resigned from his position.

“Cllr Vine has stood down because of bullying and the harassment he has suffered through Facebook,” Cllr Parbrook said.

However members of the public, including alleged victim Minehead dog poo campaigner Steven Heard, said it was Cllr Vine who had used foul and abusive language on the social media platform.

“Why does he get to walk away scot free? He has never apologised to me,” Mr Heard said.

The meeting featured a high level on tension at times, with some residents punctuating the meeting with booing and clapping, and some visibly annoyed when Cllr Parbrook called an early end to the meeting at 9pm.

One Minehead resident, a Mr Thresher, said: “A lot of people are here tonight because they care about this town but they are becoming apathetic about the council.

“I was born and bred here and the town council used to be respected, but it is in danger of losing that.”

Cllr Maureen Smith argued that it was a good thing the people were attending meetings but the best thing to do to bring about change would be to stand in next year’s elections.

“The people on the council are volunteers. Magic candidates are not going to suddenly appear and solve all your problems, being a councillor is hard work and I really encourage people to stand and put their money where their mouth is,” Cllr Smith said.

During the course of the meeting there were presentations from the police, Brian Leaker discussing the upcoming plans at the Old Hospital, Cllr Mandy Chilcott talked about the upcoming council merger between Taunton Deane and West Somerset and Graham Sizer gave an explanation of the newly agreed Business Investment District.

Cllr Parbrook also gave a presentation on the good work the council had been doing to keep the Porlock to Minehead bus running, keep toilets open, and help develop the new community building and clubhouse in Irnham Road.