Lisa Dodd-Mayne, Wakefield Council’s Service Director Culture and Sport, tells us (March 21) that the council has to save money, as though this is something that we, as rate-payers and pensioners were not already aware of.
During the current financial crisis, all of us have had to make difficult financial decisions several times over.
What once may have been normal expenditure is now a luxury.
We appreciate that the council has to make difficult financial choices, but that doesn’t mean we have to do away with all culture, sport and entertainment.
The Hepworth is an example of expenditure to bring pleasure to many people. Not everyone would agree with that, but nevertheless it brings joy to those who like that sort of thing.
Spending money wisely to benefit the widest range of people is good value. The open space of Pugneys brings pleasure to rich and poor, to old and young, to male and female, to boaters, walkers, cyclists, charities, the physically able, the less able and voters of every political persuasion.
Pugneys is not a luxury, it is not something that can be ‘sold off’; to do so is false economy.
Lisa says no decision has been taken and that no operator has been identified, and that the council is still in the early stages.
So how can she say it is ‘unavoidable’ when she has not explored all other options? Why should an outside operator want to manage something that the council can’t manage?
Lisa is talking council doubletalk. How much consultation has she had with the Friends of Pugneys? Doesn’t she realise they would be the best people to cooperate and work with to provide some answers to her apparent problem?
Come on Lisa, put your human being hat on and have some meaningful dialogue with people who speak and work voluntarily for all of us – without political bias.