30 years ago

FROM the West Sussex County Times of Friday, November 20, 1981.

HORSHAM District Council has landed itself in hot water over the prestigious new £1m swimming pool, which opens tomorrow.

Parents wanting their children to learn to swim there have been asked to sign a form releasing the council from legal responsibility in the event of certain accidents which may occur.

Some of the parents have consulted solicitors who have categorically forbidden the mums and dads to sign. One mum said: “I understand that the council is automatically responsible in the case of its own negligence, but I think the conditions on the form create a grey area in legal terms, which I find worrying.

“I have never been asked to sign such a form at the other pools where I have taken my two daughters.

“I would rather pay more for the lessons if that would mean the council could then have a more comprehensive insurance policy.

“The pool is marvellous and it doesn’t seem to make sense to cut corners over a thing like this. My children will not be taking lessons at the pool if I have to sign this form.”

A council spokesman said: “This clause is quite normal and is a protection for the councils. It doesn’t exclude our own negligence. However, if a child is injured as a result of something another child does at the swimming pool we could not be sued.’’

MAJOR steps are being taken to try and improve the community facilities in Southwater. Horsham District Council revealed that together with the county council it has already started on plans to bring about changes for the better in the village.

This comes only a week after Southwater ward of Horsham Rural Parish Council condemned the result of the inquiry into the district plan for ignoring the village’s needs.

Tony Lardner, chairman of the ward, accused the inquiry inspector of not looking at Southwater as a whole and ‘not appreciating the situation’.

But Les Durrant, at the district council planning department, says this is not the case and that significant improvements may soon be made.

The first of these improvements will be a country park which is going hand in hand with the proposed redevelopment of the old brickworks.

THREE parish councils have protested to West Sussex County Council about the decision to axe pedestrian crossings in Steyning, Bramber and Upper Beeding. The bypass committee, which represents the councils, has asked the county surveyor to meet its members or, alternatively, face a public meeting.

County councillor for all three parishes, Jack Campbell, has condemned the county for ‘indecent haste’ in deciding to wipe out the crossings.

If Keith Williams, county surveyor, continues with a decision to axe the crossings he is likely to be met with a similar protest which led to the bypass being provided.

Protests then about delays in starting work on the bypass took the form of demonstrations in High Street, Steyning.

The three parish councils had understood that the county council would wait for up to a year before taking action over the crossings – one year from the opening of the bypass.