Our voice counts for nothing

I NOTED with interest the interview with Councillor Ap Rees in which he deigns to speak for the 'silent majority' in Weston who he believes are

I NOTED with interest the interview with Councillor Ap Rees in which he deigns to speak for the 'silent majority' in Weston who he believes are in favour of the Henry Boot scheme for the Tropicana.Well, I would like to say I am one of the silent majority and I am very much opposed to the scheme. The problem is that like many others I walk along the promenade every day, becoming increasingly distressed at the prospect of the development, but failing to do anything about it. If the scheme goes ahead it will be because of the apathy of people like me, who love Weston with a passion, but feel that our individual voice counts for nothing. Perhaps it is time we stood up to be counted. Perhaps we should rally the people from all over the country who still come to Weston for their holidays - not because they want a shopping centre with the standard range of shops, or an up-market 96 bedroomed hotel on the seafront (with adjoining car park on the beach), but because the sweep of Weston Bay with the backdrop of the woods is one of the most picturesque in the South West. Add to this the superb work of the people who run Weston Pier and the kiosks and donkey rides on the splendid beach and we have a resort to be proud of.Perhaps another reason people have not spoken up is that they may not be aware of the huge size of the proposed development. I rather suspect if people realised that the footprint is much larger than the Tropicana, and four times as high, they would have second thoughts. At the very least, the cost of the development would make any swimming facilities outside the financial reach of many families. Our councillors decry those opposed to the scheme as being stuck in the past. Not a bit of it. I would be delighted to see the proposed Henry Boot development go ahead somewhere else. I suspect, though, without the prospect of a 96 bed hotel on the beach, ripe for future conversion into flats when the weather deters visitors, they would not be so keen.What we all recognise is Weston's lack of an all-weather facility and that is where the Tropicana could come into its own. It doesn't have to be a pool. Henry Boot can give us a pool somewhere else. Let the council cover the Tropicana. And if they are not prepared to do that, let them demolish the pool and give the beach back to Westonians and retain the facade as a restaurant. At least then the council will not have to pick up the costs when the Henry Boot pool proposal runs into financial difficulty - which it surely will. NAME AND ADDRESS SUPPLIED

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