Your ideas for Spalding, anger over town factory plan, and words from a pastor
These letters originally appeared in Thursday's Spalding Guardian.
I don’t think people are thinking about families
Thank you for the article you have written regarding possible facilities available in Spalding.
I have been following the articles and letters over the last few months regarding the poor situation Spalding is in now.
It saddens me to see the state of it now. I will not harp on about the situation but I feel that there is one fundamental thing that has not been thought about and that is families.
Many years ago when my children were little, during the school holidays I would pack a picnic, get on the bus from the village where we lived and go to Ayscoughfee Hall.
There my children would paddle in the little pool and we could sit in the shade and play with a ball. This is not allowed now. We spent many hours there.
Now it has all changed. No pool, the play area is shoved into a corner with only one seat near it. Children are told not to climb the trees (which, incidentally, my children used to do along with many others) – this is obviously because of the heightened health and safety rules nowadays, but children need to be able to do these things as part of growing up.
I truly believe we need an area of open grass, big trees for shade, benches, a play area and a large splash pool. This would be wonderful for the families here. No travelling further afield. Wonderful for school holidays and weekends.
This would also stop youngsters from playing in the Coranation Channel when the weather is warm, which is unsafe.
There should not be an entrance fee either. Income can be from a cafe that sells basic snacks.
All the developers that are building in the area could make a contribution and upkeep along with the council.
The council spend money on useless things that don’t help the normal family, most of which struggle financially in this area.
The money the council received from Springfields development could have been used for this instead of what they spent it on. How has that helped the community of Spalding ?
What about Moulton Park, which the council owns?
No, they would rather sell it to developers.
Our town needs to reinvent itself
First of all, many thanks to reporter Andrew Brookes and the Spalding Guardian for starting this overdue and much-needed debate.
I’d like to offer a few thoughts.
We need to support the growth of locally-based retail businesses, which tend to show more loyalty to their area than the big high street chains, as we have seen over the last couple of years. It would be particularly welcome to see the kind of specialist niche shops people currently look for in Lincoln or Stamford.
We need to rethink the way vehicles and people circulate around the town centre. Full pedestrianisation of Hall Place and Market Place would create a much more attractive space, with scope for more creative use of planting, public art and performance areas.
The provision of more safe cycle routes from outlying areas would help to reduce congestion and air pollution.
As the Civic Society has often pointed out, the frontages of some town centre shops don’t present an attractive face. We need to find ways of making retailers take more pride in the external appearance of their premises.
We need to be better at promoting the wealth of talented creative people in our area. How about an annual festival each summer to give them a showcase, and a dedicated arts centre, perhaps within the South Holland Centre, for exhibitions and live performances?
A better network of cross-country footpaths, including beside our waterways, as well as a Sunday train service, would bring additional visitors to the town. At present, those arriving at the bus station are greeted by a rather unsavoury view of Spalding, and it needs a lot of improvement.
We shouldn’t be too proud to look further afield and learn from the experience of towns which have faced similar problems to ours, and found ways of overcoming them.
As your article demonstrated, there are already a lot of people thinking creatively about the future of our town. How about a one-day conference, open to anyone with ideas to share, at which we can explore ways of taking some of these changes forward, facilitated by someone independent, and with local councillors there to listen?
Above all, Spalding needs to reinvent itself. The Glastonbury of the Fens? We may not have a connection to the Holy Grail, but we have the energy and creativity of local people. If we make full use of those, we have a chance of halting the long-term decline of our town.
Very few are aware of the implications
Details of a proposed new factory were in Spalding were included in your paper a few weeks back (New £20m Spalding processing plant will be eco-friendly and create 150 jobs).
The article was misleading in location and job opportunities – very few people seem aware of the implications this build will have.
The entrance will be on Low Road, close enough to the A16 to potentially cause tailbacks and accidents.
An extremely busy and fast road. Although it is a 40mph limit the majority of drivers do not abide by it.
It will take up valuable agricultural land that is outside the areas allocated for industrial growth in south east Lincolnshire. The planning application states there will only be approximately 50 jobs, whereas the article stated 150.
I do live very close to the site and it will affect me in many ways.
But I appeal to the users of the B1165 road to support in the objection to this application based on the safety of road users and that there are industrial areas allocated for this type of build elsewhere.
THOUGHT FOR THE WEEK: Give thanks to our creator
Living in South Lincolnshire, we are very aware of the changing seasons as the farmers change from grain harvest to root crops and brassicas, and see apparently good crops being gathered in.
We celebrated Harvest Festival at Fleet Baptist last week, and we are always grateful for the variety and quantity of harvest gifts we received, sending four boxes of dry and tinned goods to the local food bank this year.
It is good to be able to share some of our crop with those in most need.
Harvest remind us that somewhere in God’s wonderful world, harvest is going on each and every day, and I expect every hour of every day.
But we should not get blasé about food supplies, as each year we see storm and tempest fire and flood destroy many acres of foodstuff, often where people can least afford it.
We need to make sure that just as we share our resources in this country, we also need to be prepared to share with our brothers and sisters in other countries, who are having a tough time.
We have discovered what it is like to suffer the excessive rainfall events that have caused so much destruction, in the last few years.
So this harvest time, let us be grateful for all those who work to grow our food, and those who work in the food industry to process and transport the food to our shops. Remembering the transport companies and lorry drivers who are under such pressure, due to a lack of HGV drivers this year.
While offering thanks, let us remember our creator God, who made it all possible at the creation of the world.
God said: “Let the land produce vegetation: seed-bearing plants and trees on the land that bear fruit with seed in it, according to their various kinds.” And it was so.
And there was evening, and there was morning – the third day.
It was not until the sixth day that he created mankind and put us in charge of God’s world.
How frustrating it must be to see what a problem we have to share his world with one another, and to protect it for future generations but remember: “all good gifts around us are sent from heaven above, so thank the Lord, O thank the Lord for all his love”.
Pastor Ross A Dean
Fleet Baptist Church