Squalid car park lets town down

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Horsham now has a smart new railway station which gives a bright and attractive first impression to those arriving in the town.

Compare this to the experience of anyone arriving at Horsham District Council’s Piries Place car park.

There, the first impression is not of arrival at a destination ranked in the upper echelons of the ‘Great Places to Live’ chart, but more akin to a place of squalor.

Over the past few weeks the overwhelming smell in the stairwells, which can be most politely described as that of a neglected public lavatory, has become more putrid. I don’t know whether this has any connection with the increase in the East Street evening economy encouraged by our local council, but I for one would not feel my dining experience had been enhanced by my arrival at, or departure from, the nearest available car park.

The walls, handrails, and steps are filthy. The opportunity to avoid the deeply unpleasant stairwell environment is often restricted by the fact that the lifts are frequently out of order.

What makes the matter worse is that the fee that those using the car park have to pay for this appalling experience has increased, with no evidence of the money charged being used to improve the facility.

This is clearly the stark reality that arises from a council that is determined not to invest in local services. It is not only the service users that suffer but the reputation of our town.

I am pleased to see that a recent national survey has shown that, contrary to what the Tory councillors running the council would have us believe, people would prefer to see investment in public services, even if it means a slight increase in tax, rather than be deprived of them.

Horsham council needs to start investing in services before the impact of its current policies has a seriously detrimental effect on our town and community.

We hope that readers will support our campaign for an improvement in Piries Place car park and increased investment of our council tax in services.

The railway station upgrade has demonstrated the positive return on appropriate investment.

Horsham councillors should take a lesson from this.

CAROL HAYTON

Horsham Labour Party, Clarence Road, Horsham