Letters to the Editor September 15

Selective set

HOW can we save money when North Somerset Council makes stupid decisions like buying Castlewood in Clevedon (an old building) or transferring the library at an enormous cost?

How can we save money when we have councillors who accept fanciful figures for the removal of waste at the Tropicana? The waste should have been removed by the contractors.

The decisions are made by a very selective set of councillors. This is undemocratic and should be stopped.

It is mismanagement on a big scale and we are paying for it.


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DANIELLE HELLIKER

Addicott Road, Weston

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Small ways

I SEE in this week’s Mercury that our council is asking for help. No surprise there with the nation in a financial mess, and cuts being passed on to us.

Yes, it is possible for us all to help in small ways. We could sweep the pavements outside our properties – we can pick up our rubbish – even dogs’ mess – and so on.

But what I can’t understand is this. How can we afford to spend billions on wars that don’t concern us?

How can we afford all this foreign aid when our own families are starving, why should we prop up the European Union’s failing countries?

I believe we gave China �50million pounds recently. Why?

And with an open-door policy, and thousands of immigrants, it’s no wonder our services can’t cope.

JOHN CARTER

Addicott Road, Weston

Consultation

WE ARE writing in response to the article ‘Doctors’ surgery merger goes before the planners’, in the Mercury on September 8.

It should be noted that the decision on the planning application relating to the proposed new medical centre for the Wrington Vale Medical Practice has been deferred until October 20 and so there is still time for patients in the practice to write to the planning authority in support of the proposal.

We would certainly query the statement made by Wrington parish councillor Deborah Yamanaka that the planned closure of the two existing surgeries will “not benefit the majority”.

This may be true for those supporters of the Wrington SOS Group, but it is certainly not a view universally held by the majority of the patients in the practice as was very evident from the last two public consultation meetings which were held last year.

Deborah Yamanaka appears to be unaware that the decision to proceed with the new surgery was taken by the Primary Care Trust as long ago as December 2010 and there is little point in again raising objections to this as these were thoroughly aired during the lengthy consultation process.

The only matter for consideration is not whether or not a new surgery should be built, but the location of the surgery.

The proposed site in Pudding Pie Lane in the parish of Churchill is central to the area covered by the practice and has the support of Churchill Parish Council.

JOHN AND MARY POCKETT

Court Drive, Sandford

Confronted him

WALKING with my wife on the seafront I saw two young men, one of which casually threw an empty drink can into the water fountain.

I was incensed by this so I confronted him on his action, only to subject myself and my wife to verbal assault and obscene gestures and the risk of physical assault.

A lady passing by said I was brave to tackle them. My intervention was mainly caused by a sense of civic duty, but was also partly due to my anger at myself for failing to intervene a few weeks earlier when two drunken young men verbally assaulted and physically threatened a No7 bus driver and I had just sat passively.

However I do wonder if in this increasingly aggressive, disrespectful and undisciplined society is intervention brave or just foolish?

NAME AND ADDRESS SUPPLIED

Seaside town

READING the front page on what council cuts will do to people in Weston was so depressing.

We are a seaside town which makes �360million per year from visitors.

Why not build a swimming pool on Dolphin Square? Do we need a thousand-seat cinema?

Build the swimming pool on the ground floor next to the new Premier Inn Hotel. It will be on the seafront. If the council turn lights off at night and don’t repair roads it’s a recipe for mugging and burglaries. Also the council will be sued if people hurt themselves due to pot holes etc.

Why doesn’t Nigel Ashton and his Tories realise that we are a seaside town and need lights and flowers in our parks.

We didn’t waste �9million on the Town Hall and �16million moving to Clevedon. People know who to vote for next elections.

S BARRINGTON

Beach Road, Weston

It all helps

THIS may have already been thought of, but I have often wondered why North Somerset Council do not do this while many others councils do.

My mother who lives in East Sussex uses this facility regularly and we both think it’s a fantastic idea that benefits both the council and the residents.

Her local recycling centre keeps anything that is taken there that someone else may benefit from.

This is anything from clothes and bedding to sofas, tables and fridges. Someone else’s waste may be someone else’s dream!

Even if items were only sold for a minimal amount, it all helps. And it also helps the environment.

I hope the council will consider my idea as it’s something I have often wondered why it has not been done before.

MRS EMILY HARRIS

Bathurst Road, Milton

Fabulous

IN THE September 8 edition of the Mercury I noted Ken Weston’s memories of 1940/50s singer Anne Shelton.

I too remember the hit he referred to as ‘Come to the Station’ but as I recall the title of the song was actually ‘Lay Down Your Arms’ but I agree with Ken she was a beautiful lady with a fabulous voice.

A WALKER

Woodside, Weston

Arson

I WAS shocked to read in last week’s Weston Mercury that according to the region’s major fire services firefighters are wasting valuable time and resources each year dealing with thousands of arson attacks and how arsonists are going unpunished.

It’s bad enough to hear how our very brave fire crews are subjected to attacks every week without these callous arsonists putting pressure on them.

Arson is responsible across the country for more than 2,000 deaths and serious injuries every year, and cost some �500million in property damage.

Of course, the general public pays through rising insurance premiums. The popular image of the arsonist as a deranged pyromaniac is far from the truth.

My heart went out to businessman Tony Munden who ran a lovely community caf� in Clarence Park and who was sadly targeted by arsonists for food and I hope our council install CCTV cameras in the park.

Firefighters are on the side of the angels.

D F COURTNEY

Victoria Park, Weston

Voluntarily

TWO weeks ago the council locked the doors of Clarence Park Caf�.

Many local people had voluntarily offered to strip and clean the caf� after the arson attack on Bank Holiday Monday.

The owner Tony Munden has still not been told whether the council’s insurers have agreed to pay for the damage to be repaired.

I think the least that the council could have done was to have dried out the inside of the building, to leave it wet and boarded up will not help the situation.

J DUNSTONE

Locking Moor Road, Weston

Devastated

I AM a regular user of Clarence Park Caf� and was devastated when it became victim to an arson attack.

I go down most days with my nine-month-old daughter as you always feel welcome and safe in this community-loved caf�.

I, along with many others, went down to Clarence Park Caf� on September 2 to help start to empty it out and clean it up.

The turnout was amazing as there were people of all ages turning up offering their help along with cleaning equipment, decorating supplies and also some offering their trades for free, such as plumbing and electrics.

However, we were stopped from helping by a member of the council as they said it was down to them and no-one apart from the owner, Tony Munden, was allowed to clear it out and that was all he was even allowed to do. He was very abrupt and rude to Tony.

We were all gutted at not being able to help as we think a lot of the caf� and Tony and wanted to help as much we could.

Before we all went, as unfortunately there was nothing we could do, the member of the council promised, in front of about 40 people, that the council’s insurance would definitely be in on September 5 and that work would commence starting to refurbish the caf� by September 7 at the very latest.

He also promised double glazed windows with metal shutters at night, which should have been put in a very long time ago to prevent all the previous break-ins, along with this final attack.

I know I speak for many when I want to know why there is still no action being taken by the council, and why, if they are not doing anything about it, will they not allow Tony and the community to start the refurbishment themselves?

In last week’s Mercury the council were asking for volunteers to help cut the costs of the council, but when people offer to help they get stopped and told they are not allowed.

What are we supposed to do?

J L CRIDGE

Walliscote Road, Weston

Wonderful

YOU read in the Mercury about the vandalism of the wonderful caf� in Clarence Park. We initially hoped that it could be re-opened within months, if not weeks.

In the days following the theft and arson, many people turned up to volunteer their services in clearing the mess and offering their time and materials so that Tony could get up and running again.

All he needs is the approval of North Somerset Council to go ahead.

The damage is not structural and refurbishment could be completed very quickly.

Hopefully by the time this letter is printed, things will be moving swiftly on but, if not, please can someone from North Somerset Council spare a few hours to visit the site, give the go-ahead and let work start and reassure us that this asset to the park and town will re-open soon.

Don’t let this become another Tropicana and sit derelict for the next 10 years.

Our Government talks about the importance of the ‘community’.

Well, this caf� attracts young and old, from all walks of life, and provides a nucleus for many. It also makes the park a safer place.

This is ‘community’ at work.

We need it, particularly for those that are isolated and lonely, hundreds of regular dog-walkers, and all the local families that congregate and while away many happy hours in this lovely park.

Tony has worked tirelessly, over many years, to build up this caf� but it is not just a business that we would lose, it is a local meeting place with excellent affordable food and drink every day of the week.

Every year thousands of us enjoy many visits to Clarence Park because the caf� is at its centre.

If you wish to see it open again soon, sign the petitions (in many local shops) and/or write to your local councillor or the Mercury.

North Somerset Council should give the go-ahead for this caf� to continue playing its integral part in our community.

Don’t let us lose our caf� or wait for years for a replacement. We need it now.

ANN PICKARD

Nithsdale Road, Weston

Thank you

THANK you to all the helpers and the generous people of Weston who donated �277 to help the Moon Bear Rescue Support Group.

For more information please go to our website www.animalasia.org or contact your local support group in Weston on 01934 625990.

A DAVIS

Dovetail Drive, Weston

I’D LIKE to thank everyone who supported our foster carers as they took part in the It’s a Knockout event on September 3 on Weston beach, especially Weston’s Shooting Stars cheerleading troop who turned up and gave fantastic encouragement to the team.

The carers raised over �750.

We’re still desperately short of foster carers, especially for teenagers, and would encourage anyone with spare time and a spare room to get in touch. If anyone is interested in fostering, it’s not too late to find out more. Just visit www.n-somerset.gov.uk/fostering.

DAVID BEBBINGTON

North Somerset Fostering

Badger House c/o Weston Court, Oldmixon Crescent, Weston

THANK you to everyone in Weston for being so supportive of our Midnight Beach Walk Road Show last Wednesday.

It always amazes us just how much support there is for Weston Hospicecare.

Lots of ladies signed up to the event at the roadshow or took registration forms home.

We are lower on numbers this year than previous years but so far nearly 600 women have registered which is fantastic, We would however like to get that to 900. So if you did take a form home please send it in so that we reach our target. It’s going to be a fantastic night and with only one week to go there is not much time left to register.

I look forward to seeing lots of you on September 24.

KAYA EVANS

Junior event organiser, Weston Hospicecare, Thornbury Road, Uphill

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