Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Last Chance to Save the Skateboard Park Tonight

At tonight's Telegraph Hill Assembly meeting (Tues 21st, 7:30 pm at Aske's school lower site, Jerningham Road), there will be a public vote on whether to go ahead with plans to site a small skatepark in the Telegraph Hill lower park.

As reported here before, proposals to put this facility in the upper park proved contentious at the last meeting of the Assembly. Since then a broad group - including some who opposed the earlier plans - has come up with a second proposal which seems to address the concerns of the objectors.

At the last minute however, a campaign has been launched against the plan with posters put up today on trees around the area saying 'Your last chance to save the lower park from the skateboard park is tonight... If you care about the lovely green space of our park and don't want all the potential problems associated with such facilities please turn up and vote No to the proposal'.

This is entirely misleading - the new plans envisage squeezing the ramp in next to the existing tarmac sports area, replacing a path. There will be no loss of green space. As for the 'potential problems' this sounds like code for 'keep young people out of the park unless they are on a lead'.

Can't help thinking that the timing of these posters is very cynical - the objectors have not made their views known in the kind of places you might expect to read them (e.g. in the comments thread at Brockley Central or on the Hill discussion boards). In this way they have allowed the impression to be created that there is a consensus about the plans with their approval a formality. On this basis I am sure that some people in favour of the skatepark might have felt there was no need for them to turn up, requiring only a semi-clandestine 'anti' mobilisation along with some last minute hysteria to get the plans voted down.

Don't let them get away with it.

Upate 22 September 2010: the meeting last night voted 72 against and 196 for the proposal. Whatever else you think about it, the issue has certainly put some life into the Telegraph Hill Assembly meetings!

1 comment:

Tamsin said...

In fairness, I did see these "Save the Lower Park" posters up on the park gates before the weekend so it is not quite so last minute as it might seem.

Note the meeting time is actually on the Council website as 7pm - although I think there may have been some discussion somewhere about making it half an hour later.