Councillor Notes August 2014 - “It’s good for the town”
I must have heard this statement a thousand times, whenever there is a display, public showing, concert or some other activity on the green in Hunstanton. My response is always the same, Which Town are you talking about?
I enjoy most of these events and wouldn’t want to be a killjoy, but I resent the fact that I am expected somehow to be eternally grateful to some body or organisation that turns up in Hunstanton trying to raise money or their profile for their chosen charity, pastime or hobby.
So let’s get back to “its good for the town” whose town I ask? If I ask the majority of traders in the Town Centre I am told there’s “no benefit to us” people going to the green don’t come and shop with us. Right or wrong that’s what I am told.
If I ask the town centre residents, the chances are they will tell you that they have inordinate parking and traffic problems, they may tell me about the litter that is strewn around their homes or indeed the used nappies and worse items deposited on the road or sometimes their gardens when visitors depart.
It seems to me that the major beneficiary, is the Boro’ Council itself, without the car parks filling, for those that will pay for car parking, without the kiosks that pay rent on the seafront, without the caravan sites owned by the Boro’ having been gifted them by Hunstanton UDC and now let to the site managers, the coffers in K.L. would be much emptier.
The reason I haul of this in front of you is that it’s the 40th anniversary of the demise of Hunstanton UDC. You see 40 years ago it would have been ‘Good for the Town’ the monies from visitors would have made the living standards of residents and businesses directly better, there would have been a reason to put up with all the drawbacks of the visitors. Over the years, and my family have lived here for about 45, things have changed dramatically, I live here by the seaside in this ‘market Town’ because of the banks, the supermarkets, the wonderful array of cafés restaurants and take-aways its great living here and I don’t begrudge the citizens from all over the country who come here to enjoy the seaside and all the surrounding benefits, but please don’t tell me “its good for the town’.
I want the population of Hunstanton to pay the lowest amount of domestic rates in the Boro’ to compensate for the aforementioned inconveniences not the second highest for the same reason. What Hunstanton needs, in my opinion, is less interference from the Boro’ more autonomy more self governance, I have been humbled by the fact that local people voted for me, as an Independent local politician, at all levels, so former Town, Boro’ and County councillor I am the same man, I don’t get better or worse as I put on different hats. Why then, if I can be trusted to make decisions at County about multi-million pound issues, can I and my colleagues not be trusted to help run Hunstanton? Roll on next May. TELL ME YOUR THOUGHTS.
This is very short report; no space left in the magazine although there is a lot going on politically.