11th Apr, 2021

This week's letters: Eurostar, breaking lockdown rules and controversial cemetery

IS this how people interpret ‘Stay at home’, ‘Only travel for essential purposes’ and ‘exercise locally’?

Plymouth Road and Pitcheroak Golf Course,(which had a barrier to stop the entry of cars but was moved out of the way by someone) on Sunday, January 24 in the snow.

All the cars in the car park and filling the road have gone sledging. Nice for the kids but not in the spirit of the lockdown!

John, Southcrest

IN answer to Mr M Jones’ comments on my letter of January15 (Redditch Standard), material reasons for refusal are:-

1. Conflicts with existing Council Planning policies.

The Proposed Cemetery in the Arrow Valley Country Park conflicts with 37 open space policy statements to which this council is committed, including Worcestershire County Council’s green infrastructure framework March 3, 2020.

This last document has been signed by Redditch Council and identifies Redditch as having ‘some of the most deprived of open space communities in the county’.

2. Makes Existing Open Space Deficit worse – the council’s own assessment has identified an existing deficit of 11.1 hectares (11 football pitches). The Meadow site is 4.6 hectares and its loss will make that deficit worse by another 4.5 football pitches.

3. Will undermine balance of open space provision in Redditch.

4. A cemetery will be hostile to the overall park concept.

5. Will cause loss of ecology and irrevocable damage to the existing flora and fauna.

6. Will cause pollution.

7. Will be contrary to community wishes.

8. Will cause traffic danger.

9. To quote Government Planning Policy in the Companion Guide to PPG17 (used by the Council) ‘allowing redevelopment of open space will not be good planning.’

There is still time to write a letter of objection to Redditch Council.

I Willcock, Redditch

HAVING seen the letters published on January 29 in reply to that of M Jones (January 22) I would like to say that I agree with M Jones that ‘a cemetery is a quiet, peaceful place where people can still walk and exercise their dogs’.

I have lived opposite one all my life and often walk there, regularly seeing other people walking in there too.

And it’s nice to know that I will never have houses built opposite me.

Would the people objecting to the Ipsley burial ground be happy to win their argument and later in time find a housing estate being planned on their meadow?

M Jones also states that 600 letters of complaint isn’t a lot in comparison to the town’s population and yet S Williams (January 29) says ‘650 objections in total does not mean that the rest of the borough population are in favour’.

It certainly seems that way to me. If someone objects to something, they do something about it, so that means only 650 people have chosen to object.

Personally, I think Redditch will need a new burial ground and although people have suggested other places there are various reasons these would not be suitable.

V Morgan, Southcrest

ONE really has to admire the sheer gall of some people.

Eurostar has called again for a bailout from the British government.

Yet that government sold its stake in Eurostar in 2015.

Eurostar is majority owned by SNCF, the French state owned railway company.

In a similar vein, the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI), a charity, has on station, some 32 boats in the Republic of Ireland.

They are of course crewed by very brave local volunteers.

However, we might remember that the most expensive RNLI boat, the Shannon, costs some £2million as new.

Isn’t it about time we stopped falling for the three card trick?

D Vincent, Winyates

YOUR recent report ‘Crowds at park stir appeal to walkers’, reports Council Leader Matt Dormer as clearly recognising how essential it is for residents of the town to have access to open spaces.

He also recognises it is not desirable or necessary for everyone to converge on the same locality, but that they should look for other options.

I am puzzled as to how the Council can, on the one hand, acknowledge the value and absolute necessity of access to a wide range of open space, yet, on the other, consider it entirely appropriate to try and deprive the town of a significant area of Arrow Valley Country Park, namely Ipsley Meadow.

This area of open-space provision is one of the most well-used, and certainly well-loved, open space areas providing an unspoilt amenity to a far wider catchment area than its immediate environs.

If the last 12 months has shown us anything, it is that very many people have come to more fully value the natural, unspoilt environment which, perhaps until recently, has been taken for granted.

Just leave well alone and allow people to continue to use it as intended, in perpetuity.

S Williams, Ipsley

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