Letter: ‘The Rotten Borough’ of Horsham

WHILE waiting for a bus in the Carfax, I re-read the WSCT Millennium Capsule Plaque where it gives a brief description of how and when Horsham began.

It was very interesting to read that during the 18th and 19th centuries it was known as ‘The Rotten Borough’ and brought to mind the various shenanigans that have been going on under the current local council. I mention a few below.

1. Monies spent on consultants to give, in some cases, what appears to be incorrect information. If this is the case, what do our councillors do about getting our money back? Like most people I would question why we have to spend money on consultants anyway when we have so many long titled councillors usually being paid more than someone doing a similar job in the private sector.

I remember reading one councillor’s reason (when I was questioning the farcical waste of our money setting up the Acorn system) being that we do not have people with the necessary experience – so why are we paying for people who do not have the necessary experience to do their job?

2. Town Hall. Years ago it was suggested, and agreed, after consultation, that this could be taken on by the community but for what appears to be a hidden agenda the council never let this go through. Much of our money has been wasted on their various attempts to push through something few of the people they are supposed to represent want.

3. Broadbridge Heath Leisure Centre. From the County Times of January 19 it appears the consultant’s report was even more inaccurate than originally thought (I guess they still keep our money though) and that details of costs given by the previous leader of the council were completely untrue.

As well as there being no consultation with the majority of people using the facilities there doesn’t appear to have been any with DC Leisure as their Winter 2011 information brochure indicates they have invested in new equipment and trained staff to deliver a programme that is recognised by British Gymnastics to centres that have shown a keen interest in increasing participation in these sports.

Is this going to be their loss or will we, the taxpayers, be covering it? Has the council been made an undisclosed offer by Tesco, or someone else, for the land and DC’s losses will be covered by part of that? Who knows! Who is able to check if even the County Times is unable to obtain information that should be freely available?

4. Car parking. DC Leisure will also surely lose some business at The Pavilions through the new parking costs. If, as Mr Paterson claims, money is being put back into the car parks to ‘create a more enjoyable visitor experience’ (?) why didn’t the council put some of these ‘enjoyable experiences’ in place before the price increase, as suggested by Gill Buchanan? If it is introducing new meters it cannot be rocket science to consider ones where Pavilion members can obtain a refund when they use the facilities.

W. Libberman states a number of members petitioned the council a couple of years ago but, as usual, these people, like the rest of us, are ignored or forgotten because the councillors know their wages and pensions will continue to be paid by us whatever they decide to do.

Mr Paterson, like others in his position who appear to be living in a different world to the majority of us, claims Horsham ‘is recession-proof’, I wonder how many of those who have recently lost or are losing their jobs (page six, January 19) or those on low or fixed incomes agree with that?

E. DELGADO

Parry Close, Horsham