Island residents are being encouraged to help shape the council’s spending and priorities for the year ahead – by taking part in an online budget survey launched on the iwight.com website.

The survey – which can be found at https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/budget_engagement– is among a series of consultation exercises being undertaken by the council as it prepares its budget choices for 2015/2016 and future years.

Also being staged over the next two months are a variety of public forums, taking place at the following venues across the Island:

•        Wednesday 12 November – Newport – Riverside Centre, The Quay.

•        Thursday 13 November – Ryde – George Street Centre, George Street.

•        Monday 17 November – Freshwater – All Saints’ School, School Green Road.

•        Tuesday 18 November – Cowes – UKSA, Arctic Road.

•        Monday 24 November – Ventnor – St Francis School, Newport Road.

•        Wednesday 3 December – Sandown – Main Hall, Broadway Centre.

•        Thursday 11 December – East Cowes Town Hall, York Avenue.

•        Monday 15 December – Shanklin – Shanklin Theatre, Prospect Road.

(Each event starts at 6.30pm and finishes at 8.30pm.)

Council leader, Councillor Ian Stephens, said: “I would strongly encourage as many people as possible to contribute to this online survey. We are tasked with making savings of approximately £13.5 million next year – and with government grant support reducing and demands on our services increasing, we are faced with some difficult and challenging choices.

The online survey will help give residents the chance to tell us what services are most important to them so that we can prioritise our limited resources where they are most needed.”

Paper copies of the survey will be available on request from council help centres and libraries.

The online survey closes on 17 December.