We have read all of the articles about Sustainable Spalding that have been published in recent weeks and are surprised that no one appears to have asked any important questions about this project that is intended to regenerate the town.
Our questions are:
1. What does regenerate mean? The Red Lion Quarter is a significant demonstration of the regeneration of a key town centre location and the council made that happen.
2. Why start with a cinema? What evidence is there that this is the most important development for the people of Spalding? Has any realistic survey been carried out? On our occasional visits to Boston, the audiences have been very small.
The South Holland Centre, which is now having digital equipment installed, appears to meet Spalding requirements.
3. How can Sustainable Spalding sign a meaningful contract with a cinema operator? They don’t even own any land and, as a not for profit company, presumably have no intention of owning land or buildings.
4. What is an enabling development? It sounds like a deal with a large developer who would provide the town with what they think that we want. A deal without any competition?
5. Why is there no mention of finding better uses for existing buildings? We need a revitalised centre as do most of the towns and cities in the country and as the government have recently admitted with the somewhat unusual appointment of Mary Portas.
6. When will the council make a formal comment? None of Mr Garvie’s ideas can come to anything without their active involvement.
We are sure that we are not the only people who would like answers to these and probably many more questions.
Keith and Jean Bean