AN e-petition urging Poole councillors to vote against a proposal to axe area committees attracted 150 signatories in its first two days.

It was set up by Cllr David Brown, Liberal Democrat, who was one of only two members to vote against ending area committees at the council efficiency and effectiveness overview and scrutiny committee, while seven voted in favour.

And it is only the third e-petition in three years to run on Borough of Poole's own website.

It calls on councillors to work to strengthen and publicise area committee meetings to allow more people to engage with their local elected representatives, instead of voting to discontinue them at full council on December 16.

The meetings have enabled thousands of residents to meet their councillors, be informed, consulted and debate local concerns and ask questions in an open forum, it says.

Cllr Brown is urging residents to add their names to the petition to show the strength of feeling.

"Technically you need 1,000 signatures to force a debate at full council," said Cllr Brown. "That's not the aim, it's going to be debated at full council anyway.

"It's there to apply pressure and allow people to campaign and share their views if they don't want area committees to be got rid of. It's a last ditch attempt to try and persuade some of the councillors at full council not to vote to get rid of them."

The idea is to replace area committees with community forums, led by ward councillors, but there is little information available about funding and organisation.

Cllr Drew Mellor, chairman of the governance working party, which made the recommendation said: "I am confident that that wide ranging recommendations of the working party should positively enable more voices to be heard."

These include more use of digital communication and borough wide meetings to consult with residents on key issues.

The petition can be found at