Today, I have written to the Forest of Dean District Council about the Five Acres site, urging them to get cracking with a replacement project.
In summary, the situation is as follows: the District Council have been offered the chance to buy the site for £1 accompanied by a clause requiring them to show sufficient progress with a replacement project in a five year timeframe. That seems quite reasonable to me.
However, instead of doing this, the District Council administration – run by an assorted coalition of Independent, Labour, Green and ex-UKIP councillors – is now seeking to consume more time and more money by seeking to purchase the Five Acres site at ‘market value’ (currently north of several hundred thousand pounds I understand) without a clause compelling them to get cracking with building a replacement project in a timely manner.
This is disappointing, but not a surprise – after all, this is the same District Council administration that not so long ago tried to borrow £50 million of taxpayers’ money to buy a shopping centre in Worcester, nearly 50 miles away from the Forest of Dean.
It is in the interests of our local community that we have access to good leisure facilities, something that is one of the District Council’s responsibilities. Less talk, more action – they need to step up to the plate and deliver.
My letter to the Leader of the FODDC is attached to this post for you to see.