CHRISTMAS FAYRE: QUALITY, NOT QUANTITY
On my first night in Bury St Edmunds – New Year’s Eve 1956 – looking out from the Angel Hotel to the Abbey Gate I fell in love with Bury St Edmunds. The following day I started work with Rutters Estate Agents – £5 per week!
For 60 years I have met thousands of people who decided to move here, some for a job move, but many because it is such a beautiful town, providing a quality of lifestyle found in very few other towns.
While I am not against a Christmas Fayre in principle, Bury St Edmunds deserves better. Over recent years a quality experience has been sacrificed in the scramble to be the biggest. A large number of shoppers within, say, 12 miles, who support local traders throughout the year now make a positive decision to avoid Bury.
I would urge the organisers to concentrate on quality not quantity, in particular :
a) Reduce the number of stalls by at least a hundred, strictly avoiding duplication – mainly “tat”in many sectors.
b) Reduce the number of fairground items, with none on Angel Hill.
c) If a) and b) were adopted, with appropriate barriers and control, Angel Hill could remain open, removing the major cause of traffic gridlock affecting the whole town centre.
I recall figures released a couple of years ago where estimates of the number
of visitors and extra money spent worked out at something like £8 per head. Wow.
Bury St Edmunds
PLANNING: COUNCIL SHOULD SPEED THINGS UP
I was very pleased to read the advert in last week’s BFP in which the West Suffolk Councils are asking for property owners to contact them with a view to increasing residential property availability. This would appear to indicate a reversal of their previous policy of making it as difficult as possible for such developments to progress.
I have personal experience of the many difficulties put
in front of property owners trying to do this. One case involved a property in Guildhall Street where the council insisted on the retention of huge display windows, and the case of properties in St Andrew’s Street, where huge delays have been experienced. Even now, after planning permission has been agreed, delays continue with the council unable to state the level of Section 106 payment they require – which, for those that do not know, is the cash sum the council requires to finalise the planning permission.
Let’s hope that St Edmundsbury BC can improve their performance in this regard and get some more residential properties available in the town more promptly than previously.
FOOTBALL: PERSONAL ATTACKS MAR COLUMN
Joey – I was disappointed and surprised to read your report on Friday (Joey Sadler, Across the Border, BFP Sport, November 30). While many fans would agree with your thoughts, I do not believe that many sports writers would make such personal attacks on individual players as you have in this article. This is beyond the impartial views that journalists should show and does you and your paper little credit. Even the tabloid papers never give personal attacks on players and this kind of comment does little to offer positive support to the club, especially in their attempts to improve after a disastrous start to the season. What the players need is encouragement, not unpleasant and biased personal views from a young journalist. Everybody I have spoken to about the article agree with me.
Joey Sadler replies: I am not actually a journalist – in “Across The Border” Edward Seaman (Norwich fan) and I share our own personal views. That said, I do understand what you are saying and will take it on board. All of us Ipswich Town fans are hurting at the moment, when the club is in such a bad way. We all pay good money week-in-week-out to watch the Town and if occasionally players aren’t performing or giving their all for the shirt, it gets the better of us. Thank you for the feedback, and you’re right, we must all stick together and hope Lambert is the man to pull the club out of this utter mess.
HOMELESS: CHURCH MEMBERS DO HELP A LOT
I was quite heartened by Simon Harding’s letter in the BFP in November when he praised the firework display put on by Bradfield St George Village hall. As one of the organising committee I was pleased that he enjoyed it, and we were all very grateful for his letter. However, his letter, “Maybe churches could do more”, (Readers’ Views, November 30) was disappointing to say the least! Where are these churches sitting on piles of cash? Certainly not around here and definitely not in Bradfield St George! Perhaps he could let me know so that I could contact them to find out how they do it. And even if some do have “piles of cash”, maintaining ancient listed buildings does not come cheap and some reserves are needed for unexpected repairs.
Correct me if I’m wrong, but the Gatehouse Food bank was started by the Catholic church, Sunday Suppers (for the homeless), Bury Drop and the Night Shelter in Ipswich were all started and run by many members of churches. That is not to say that many people of no faith don’t do anything to help, but his point was that the church could do more.
Bradfield St George
PARKING: SELFISH DRIVERS IN ‘DISABLED’ SPACES
Why are car drivers so selfish regarding the disabled parking Blue-Badge-Holders-only places on Robert Boby Way? When challenged that they have no Blue Badge displayed they are aggressive and have the attitude that if they are only there for a few minutes that it is okay, which is not the case.
The usual excuse is that they have a disabled family member; if this is correct then the individual parking should know not to park there at any time. Please think of others, as you may be disabled one day.
Bury St Edmunds
CYCLISTS: HITS AND MISSES ON PAVEMENTS
I am a supporter of cyclists and am pleased to see people cycling to work or school or round the town for pleasure, but I feel compelled to write to encourage cyclists to cycle round the town with care and consideration for pedestrians, Several times over the past year I have nearly been hit, or seen other pedestrians just missed being hit, by cyclists of all ages cycling on pavements rather than roads or cycling the wrong way up one way streets. This has happened on the pavement on Angel Hill, Orchard Street, Brentgovel Street and Abbeygate Street. I appreciate that it is difficult for cyclists to cycle safely on the roads in the town with the increase in traffic, but if you use the pavements, please dismount if you come across pedestrians especially if you are overtaking. If not cyclists and pedestrians are going to end up in hospital. Thank you.
BREXIT DEBATE: WHY WE SHOULD REJECT MAY’S DEAL
The Prime Minister’s deal to leave the European Union sells our country short. We shall no longer have a say on many EU rules which will still bind us. We shall still have to pay, but have no say. How is that “taking back control”?
The integrity of the United Kingdom is under threat. The EU will have a great say over Northern Ireland’s trade and economic arrangements. Scotland is now demanding similar access to our major EU export market.
The deal will make us poorer and less powerful. Businesses are already leaving the UK, which means that less tax money will be available to pay for the NHS, housing and social benefits. When we are isolated, it will be harder to make our voice heard in the world.
The deal will take away our right to live, work, study and export as freely in 27 rich countries. It does not end uncertainty for 1.5 million British expats living in the EU and for all the people from other EU countries living, working and paying taxes in the UK. We are already seeing the effects in the NHS of such people leaving the UK.
According to a mid-November Sky poll, only 14 per cent support May’s Brexit deal. If that’s what we feel, why should our MPs vote for May’s deal against our will?
The alternative to rejecting the deal is not a no-deal Brexit. It is a People’s Vote, with the option of staying in the EU. There is no majority in Parliament for a No Deal Brexit. In light of the growing difficulties we have experienced in the past three years, it may be that staying in the EU is not so bad after all!
Depden, Bury St Edmunds
BREXIT DEBATE: PEOPLE’S VOTE IS ONLY ANSWER
Parliament is due to vote on December 11 whether to accept the Prime
Minister’s dodgy deal that would prolong the Brexit process for years, and there is a constant chorus of MPs from all parties saying they will not vote for it. It thus looks very likely that the deal is dead in the water, and a means to take the country forward and avoid crashing out with no deal will be urgently needed.
With parliament deeply split, the only practical option is to go back to the people with a People’s Vote.
Asking voters what they think can never be undemocratic.
However, we also need urgently to give attention to healing the deep wounds inflicted on our
country by the past 30 months of wrangling. When the Prime Minister took office she promised to build a country fit for everyone but nothing has been done about this and deep inequalities still blight our society.
It is shameful that in one or the world’s largest economies we have food banks, increased level of homelessness, increased childhood poverty and decaying infrastructure. Surely it is time to abandon the damaging Brexit process and get back to the real issues that affect people’s lives.
Bury St Edmunds