Kings Meadow Development
With the massive spin operation that is underway from several sides regarding Kings Meadow and the historic baths, I thought it would be informative to reproduce in full the Conservative Group press release that has been issued this weekend:
Conservatives on Reading Borough Council today emphasised that there is no change in their policy regarding the King’s Meadow baths. With potential development ideas for the area being debated once again, the Conservatives today committed to work with any viable partner to restore these historic baths and to achieve the best possible outcome for the people of Reading.
Conservatives will support:
- restoration of the baths with no loss of green space
- development of the area that is of an appropriate size and scale
- working with a knowledgeable and viable partner
- making the baths accessible for community use
- accessing the resultant section 106 money for the replacement of the Mapledurham Pavilion
Conservatives will not support:
- any scheme that is an unnecessary burden on the council tax payer
- a towering eyesore
- multi-story car parking
Councillor Jeanette Skeats, Conservative lead spokesperson for culture and sport said, “King’s Meadow and the baths are very important to the people of Reading. Any restoration or development around that area must be in keeping with the surroundings.”
Cllr Skeats continued, “I’m committed to retaining as much green space as possible in Reading and King’s Meadow is no exception. I will fight for and support a viable approach for the re-generation of this area that will be of benefit to the town and the people who enjoy King’s Meadow.”
Councillor Mike Townend, who speaks for the Conservatives on re-generation, commented “Kings Meadow and Lock Island are right at the heart of Reading and our fantastic river frontage. There is a definite need for the regeneration of this area that is sadly looking rather un-loved right now. However, I believe that any high-rise development is completely inappropriate.”
Conservatives have always supported the preservation of the baths but it is just a question of how this can be achieved without a heavy burden falling onto the Council Tax payer.
What do you think is the right way to save this part of our history?
UPDATE: For those readers linking from Oranjepan’s inaccurate and misleading article please note that this article was posted in 2009, as were the comments! So all the rubbish from him about “KMC locking horns with Tories” can be seen for the spin it is.
Conservatives were delighted with the KMC victory and it wouldn’t have been possible had we Conservatives not called in the Cabinet decision at CCEA, giving KMC another chance to make their case and Labour a chance to reverse their decision. The spin referred to comes almost entirely from Oranjepan and the Lib Dems.