This evening Bexley council will meet to hear the Leader’s Report, rubberstamp the plan to
use CCTV to track errant motorists and ignore - sorry,
listen attentively to, a deputation intent on saving Belvedere’s 100 year old
Splash Park from the cut throat crew currently in charge of the borough. The Conservatives
have already announced their goal, “The Splash Park has got to close”.
Bexley council originally claimed that it would cost up to £500,000 to bring the park up to current public health standards but this was no more than a guess. A properly costed report was promised for February but as yet it has not been forthcoming.
A request that a £120,000 gift from the incinerator owner, Cory Environmental, be allocated to the Splash Park was rejected as was the UKIP suggestion that councillors give up one third of their allowances (around £300,000 a year) both of which may indicate the Conservative members’ preferred position.
The three ward councillors led by Daniel Francis identified another £160,000 which could be made available but Bexley council disputed the figure. It now accepts they were wrong but that is still a long way short of £500,000 if the final estimate proves to be that high.
Cabinet member Alex Sawyer has repeatedly said he will only accept a cost neutral solution or the Splash Park is finished. Neither would he accept any form of petition. What he probably meant is that he would ignore all public protests. Nevertheless he is going to get one tonight.
The council meeting is scheduled for 19:45 but the Save the Splash Park Group will gather on the steps of the Civic Offices, 30 minutes earlier. I am looking forward to seeing Anna Firth waving a banner in support of the public amenity that the husband of her Constituency Association President has earmarked for closure.