LETTERS - Council election, town centre regeneration and issues on vaping - The Redditch Standard

LETTERS - Council election, town centre regeneration and issues on vaping

Redditch Editorial 27th Apr, 2024   0

‘Figures don’t add up on moving our library’

 

I DIDN’T get a Redditch Arrow through my letterbox, presumably because the Conservatives know I will play ‘spot the ten half-truths and publicise them’.

Someone showed me a copy, so I played the game.




Regarding the cost of cancelling library redevelopment contracts, the next council will have to weigh up the spiralling building costs not covered by the Conservative budget,

This means that the Conservative budget excess of £1million will be not enough to cover just this one project and is certainly not robust.


Add to this that the full development plan should have been completed in December and will not now be completed until ‘the summer’, the project is about six months behind adding yet more inflation – around another £84,000.

The £490,000 savings forget to allow for the loss of rent from the closed-down nursery, and are based on an empty town hall (the statement that services will not be affected forgets that the cashiers’ desks are now closed and the hub is not a hub as most of Redditch Council now work from home or are based in Bromsgrove).

An invoice of £70,000 to Bromsgrove Council ‘no longer applies and should be allowed for’ but seems to have been added rather than subtracted to the savings figure.

The new library will mean the electrically driven doors will be opening and shutting 24,000 times a month, releasing heat to the external atmosphere which is inefficient with a heat pump heating system as the pump is electrically powered and will be switched on when air temperatures drop with each door opening, adding dramatically to the electricity bill.

The policy is just empty words.

It is stated no play areas will be removed, yet Abbeydale will lose two areas with only one replacement – easy maths, Mr Dormer.

You are removing play areas.

Commercially run? No – the space to be occupied by the library in the town hall has a rental value of around £180,000pa. The library is paying a rent of zero and this is for 125 years, during which time rents would have increased with inflation.

The council loan of £1million will cost us another £1.4million in interest over the next 40 years.

The new police station also now occupies a site which could have been commercially developed or made into a park for the A441 housing development, or become a school for these children within easy walking distance. What a waste to take an easily accessible police station and rebuild it out of reach of most Redditch people.

There’s more, but this letter is long enough so I leave you to play your own game to spot the remaining half truths. Have fun!

Margot Bish, Abbeydale

 

‘We need to see action on issues with vaping’

 

I LOOK forward to Rachel Maclean’s upcoming campaign to legalise all addictive and unhealthy substances as she seems to think Rishi Sunak’s smoking age bill is some kind of affront to free will.

My personal opinion is that gradually raising the age to purchase tobacco is a good move.

I work in a local high school and smoking cigarettes is really not something our 13 to 18-year-olds are interested in. If we can stop them getting hooked on smoking that is a good thing.

The real issue is actually vaping.

Many children are vaping, having never ever smoked.

Fruity flavour vapes at low cost (often in bright colours and with cartoon characters) are very attractive to young people.

The perception is that these are without health risk, something we have a serious lack of evidence for. We will still have generations of people addicted to nicotine even if they will never be old enough to buy a packet of cigarettes.

Sharon Harvey, Southcrest

 

‘Which party is best to help town progress?’

WE’VE got local elections fast approaching and I’ve heard nothing from the two main parties that would make me want to vote for either of them.

There’s no initiatives at all from Labour while although the Tories haven’t got much to say for themselves at least they’ve made an effort to change the town.

In saying that I mean the cemetery at Ipsley – highly controversial yet at the same time highly necessary – where else can our dead go?

Then there’s the library question. Let’s face it, there’s room in the town hall and there’s money to be made in moving it.

Yes, the demolition of the current building is going to cost the Earth and it will literally leave a big hole in the town centre, but at least the Tories have made an effort.

The police station has gone with a new blue lights building by Sainsbury’s.

It’s called progress.

Who else has made a difference?

Who else is offering to make a difference?

Watkins, Greenlands

‘BID entertainment was a letdown at festival’

 

SORRY Redditch BID I thought your entertainment at the Redditch Food Festival on Sunday, April 21, was pretty poor.

Ray Whitehouse, Redditch

 

‘We’ve been waiting for 2 years for Post Office’

 

CONGRATULATIONS to Crabbs Cross and District on getting a replacement Post Office so quickly.

At Studley we have been without a Post Office for almost two years, since Tesco Express closed, and are still no nearer to getting a replacement.

Why?

Mrs M A Hay, Alcester Road, Studley

EDITORS COMMENT

THURSDAY will potentially see big change for the future of Redditch and its residents when the first all-out election is held.

There are 27 seats up for grabs on the new-look council and you have the chance to make the difference.

We are urging you, whatever your political persuasion, to go out and have your say to truly reflect the public feeling of the borough.

There is no point complaining about council services if you have not helped determine who is in power.

We welcome your letters….

We welcome your letters for the Redditch Standard on any subject.

Email them to [email protected]

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