Turnstone - Want to start a revolution? Write a letter to the Lynn News maybe
Today is the day for making resolutions, but putting the government’s rather vague theory of “localism” into practice might require revolution rather than resolution.
The problems facing this corner of Norfolk can hardly be compared with the circumstances that provoked the Arab Spring.
But in recent years local public opinion has been largely ignored in the corridors of power at Westminster , County Hall, and King’s Court.
“Don’t panic” as Corporal Jones might have said. There is no need to take up arms, or to man the barricades. The immediate need is simply to match words with action.
Take for example the letter from Paul Johnson published in the Lynn News on December 7.
In the past a letter of this sort, describing the sale of former railway land as “the final nail in the coffin or the coffin lid for Hunstanton,” might have gone unnoticed by most town councillors.
But David Jones made sure they all had a chance to digest its contents by emailing it to his 16 colleagues.
Now, at tomorrow’s meeting of the town council’s general purposes committee, councillors will be asked to consider how best to ensure local issues are resolved locally, rather than at national, borough or county level.
It is difficult to predict the outcome, bearing in mind that 10 town councillors actually voted in favour of what Mr Johnson describes as the final nail in Hunstanton’s coffin
However, while selling off a vital section of the railway trackbed is deplorable, it does not mean we have hit the buffers when it comes to restoring some of the town’s best loved assets.
By now, it should be clear from the public response to the consultation process on the proposed enhancement scheme for the Westgate Spinney that there is no need to spend hundreds of thousands of pounds on this particular area.
The money could be put to better use elsewhere in the town centre.
It could even be used to acquire the art deco building in Le Strange Terrace, backing onto land formerly occupied by Hunstanton railway station.
This building could then be renovated with a grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund and used to display the Railway Exhibition assembled by Brian Holmes in October 2012 to mark the 150th anniversary of the opening of the line from Lynn.
This railway should surely be remembered for the part it played in making the resort of Hunstanton the queen of the Norfolk Coast !
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Tuesday 21 May 2013
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