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Couple Devastated By Council's Handling Of Upcoming Wedding

Thursday May 23 2013


Still a construction site: Town Hall Still a construction site: Town Hall


A SOON-TO-BE bride has expressed her disappointment at the council, as the delay to the Town Hall's new garden has scuppered her plans for the big day.

Margaret Blower, 38, and her partner Karl Smith, 39, of Wombwell, had booked and paid for their May 25 ceremony - which coincides with Karl's 40th birthday - at the venue in October 2012.

Having heard about the new gardens and water feature, they rushed to book the wedding and had pictured stunning photographs to remember their day.

Although their paperwork stated that only one vehicle was allowed to be parked in front of the building, the couple asked the authority for permission for two motorcycles to be parked there instead. This was agreed, but the subsequent road closure came into effect and the plans had changed.

"Karl rang them to ask how this would affect the parking of the bikes," Margaret said. "He was told that no-one is allowed to park directly in front of the building, and that we would have to park within a designated space on Church Street."

After having no further communication, the couple are disappointed with what has happened over the last seven months since booking their dream day.

"They have made no attempt to contact us," Margaret added. "The path at the front has been torn up and there's metal fencing all around.

"It's a mess. We don't know where we can park and quite frankly, who wants to get married in the middle of a building site? This is our special day - we're utterly devastated."

The fountain and public gardens are scheduled to be officially opened on June 27.

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Reply Posted by Mandie on Thursday May 23 2013 at 11:06
I went in to put banns in the other week and was told there is a designated space for one car ...and it is on the main road just to the side of the main steps. Hope yr wedding day goes well x

Reply Posted by Mike Hallett on Thursday May 23 2013 at 11:14
The whole thing is a complete mess. Not only have the council done away with essential town centre parking but they've also put up a rusty steel "thing" it looks ridiculous.
If it were I getting married there I would be asking for a full refund and compensation and taking my money elsewhere!!

Reply Posted by G on Thursday May 23 2013 at 11:54
That's awful. Considering how much thought, planning and expense goes into your wedding day the least they could have done was to contact people booked in to be married to let them know well in advance so people might have had a chance of rearranging or booking a different venue. Weddings are an emotional, stressful time anyway and who needs the added stress of having to be in the middle of a building site!? The Town Hall should at the very least refund a certain percentage of the charge as the people due to get married there are not getting what they originally signed up for.
Even when the gardens are finished I would think twice about booking to get married there as the customer service is obviously appalling. If they can't even be considerate in letting people know that things have changed and arranging special parking then how on earth would they deal with any other problems that could occur.

Reply Posted by Tina smith on Thursday May 23 2013 at 11:56
This is my brothers big day,with his wife to be...I am disgusted with the lack if communication from the council regarding this!...they have offered no word if apology neither a refund in anyway!..hiw appalling.the council us quick enough to grab money for things...but don't blink an eye at the upset they have caused.the piece of so called art adds insult to injury.i am quite sure that the Barnsley people would agree with me on that.thetes nothing that anyone can say it do to cheer the bride to be up...what a utter let down and disgrace on you.i hope their day will be amazing regardless.!

Reply Posted by Liz on Thursday May 23 2013 at 12:47
This is my daughter's big day, and I have rarely seen her so upset (annoyed) not just at the state of the area around the Town Hall but more the lack of any communication on the council's part. Margaret and her partner Karl have had to do all the inquiring to find out where they can park. The water feature completion date was originally May Day bank holiday, but instead of finishing one job they have started 3 others. Causing chaos. We will ensure their day is not ruined and find somewhere picturesque for the photos to be taken. Looks like that will be outside Barnsley.

Reply Posted by Colitt on Thursday May 23 2013 at 13:26
Nothing ever surprises me about Barnsley Councillors,we have the best people you could ever wish to meat in our area,who are treated like headless sheep.its the dirtiest scruffiesst pot holed area in the country,but all a can say is who keeps voting em in ????

Reply Posted by stevo on Thursday May 23 2013 at 20:14
Couldn't have put it better myself.
Kick the Labour idiots out now.

Reply Posted by thecynic on Thursday May 23 2013 at 16:24
Ever heard of wedding insurance?

Reply Posted by Holly on Thursday May 23 2013 at 18:42
Any other country this work would have taken weeks, as always in the UK the work takes 5 times longer than it should, whenever I go past the building site at the side of the town hall NO work is being done, manual council "workers" are a set of lazy, work shy, work to rule loafers! they should be ashamed of themselves! no wonder foreigners are coming over here and taking our job's, they're not afraid of hard work like the British are becoming!

Reply Posted by Barry on Friday May 24 2013 at 13:42
Turning barnsley town hall into a museum is by far one of the stupidest things iv heard! Long live the pope and down with the ira. Hope your big day goes well....

Reply Posted by G on Friday May 24 2013 at 15:06
thecynic - wedding insurance would be no use. The venue is still there but not in the condition they were told it would be. I don't know whether or not they have insurance as I don't know them, but even if they did have wedding insurance, how would that ease the stress of not being told by the Council? Even if you have wedding insurance it's nigh on impossible to reorganise everything for another suitable date at short notice.

Reply Posted by The Bride on Tuesday May 28 2013 at 12:12
I just want to say that we didn't let it spoil our day in the end..... We were able to park all 8 bikes at the front of the town hall, and used them as the back drop for our pohtos...... although the handling of changes leading up to the wedding were very upsetting at the time, we just cracked on and made it our day anyway.

I would hope that the council have seen these comments and will take notice of the fact that people need to be kept informed about things, maybe they should revise their, outdated, paperwork, and learn to appreciate that it isn't just about the Ceremony, but about the day as a whole.