History of Lindal & Marton

A village community at the heart of Furness


Parish Council

Response to Additional Notes on Public Meeting of 06 Feb 2004

Notes by Dick Quirk in response to the Additional Notes on the Public Meeting of 6th February 2004.

1. The meeting notes omitted to say, that all those against the green improvement agreed that Ian Glover's statement would speak on their behalf, and if he was allowed to read it out (which he did), they would forego making any individual comment. This did not happen as these same residents also had their say. Therefore the objectors had more than a fair share of time. A case of selective memory?

2. As for the inference that the meeting was undemocratic. Not only did they have more time but shouted down those who had patiently waited their turn to make a comment in favour of the improvement. I know because I was one. So much for democracy.

3. The statement as read out by the above spokesman said that Marton had a playground and a green space and that only one person from Marton had replied to the pre millennium survey, so the copy being circulated is a modified version and not the original!

4. The statement also inferred that Marton residents should not have any say in the Green (even though this is a parish matter, and we are in the same parish). As a number of the signatures on the petition came from residents outside the parish, and of the remainder only 1/4 have attended the presentations. The majority of the 200 would therefore know nothing of the details of the proposed improvements, that petition is invalid as it would infer double standards. The statement was very divisive and patronising in displaying a 'them and us' attitude between Lindal and Marton. Would the spokesman like Marton residents to ask for permission to come and worship at the church or permission when we help to raise funds for the same? I would like to point out that the villages are 'Lindal with Marton', we pay our levy to the same parish council. The green belongs to all of us. 'The space is there to be enjoyed by all'. (The spokesman's own words from his statement and agreed by all green residents).

5. The statement also said that no changes had taken place in the last hundred years. How many new houses have been built around the green in that time, 10? 20?

6. The millennium survey referred to in the statement was 5 years ago. Since that time the green has deteriorated rapidly and desperately needs refurbishment if it is to last another hundred years. The grass on the west side is growing across the road and most sections of railings are bent or rotten. This we are all agreed on. Having lived here for 30 years I have seen the green steadily deteriorate. However, it is beyond question that the surface has improved since animals stopped using it.

7. The residents who live around the green will benefit more than most, in that they will have a much more attractive view from their windows, and I would expect the price of the houses around the green would rise substantially as a result.

8. That a vote was refused when requested by one of the objectors is quite understandable. It would have resulted in an undemocratic decision. A minority of the village voting on something which is of benefit to all. A point made in his own spokesman's statement if he had listened to it. 69 villagers present out 549? Is this a case of democracy when it suits?

9. The statement that it will be an urban park is very misleading. There are no flower beds or bandstand, the green will always be the green with approximately only 2-3% of the present area having one path and some necessary paving in the entrances. The detail on the plans was not decided upon by the Residents Association, but by an independent expert, who made suggested improvements which he felt were necessary to make fullest use of what we had for the benefit of all.

10. I take exception to the derogatory and confrontational comments about the due process in the statement. The 'so called meeting' 'plans waved in our faces' 'so called consultation' etc. All the meetings/presentations have tried to be informative and democratic with ample public notice being given to all to attend. Not many green residents attended the first presentation. That was their democratic choice. The meeting notes as delivered around the village, show that many who had not been to this presentation came to the later meetings with pre-conceived negative attitudes fuelled by misinformation. The feedback at the first presentation was very positive as shown by the written comments of the attendees. The comment that the Residents Association had no mandate for these improvements is untrue, the positive response to the first presentation was the mandate to progress further, bearing in mind the opinions of the attendees with regard to type of railings etc. The plans at the first meeting were not 'waved in our faces' but were displayed on several display boards in a fair and professional manner.

11. The statement says that the proposal is finance driven (what is this???) and not needs driven. Surely the needs are, a good access to the green for all, safe area for respectful persons to remember the war dead and a secure and tidy perimeter to the Green instead of the dogs breakfast we have now!

12. Item 23 in the notes, that a comment was made that the Green was 'colourless' was only part of this persons comments, his words were that it was an 'absolute disgrace'. It is easy to write 'unbiased' notes when you have selective memory.

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