Lakes dream comes to fan­tas­tic fruition

Kentish Express Ashford & District - - Points Of View -

Last Satur­day saw the first open day for Con­ning­brook Lakes Coun­try Park, this unique Ash­ford fa­cil­ity. The large crowd of in­ter­ested res­i­dents at­tend­ing prom­ises huge sup­port for the fu­ture.

The Lakes are the only public fa­cil­ity of their kind in the area. They are a nat­u­ral site for na­ture con­ser­vancy, a beau­ti­ful set­ting for coun­try park leisure ac­tiv­i­ties, and a space for a fan­tas­tic range of wa­ter sports, such as sail­ing, ca­noe­ing, kayak­ing, row­ing, swimming and pad­dle board­ing.

Fish­ing is al­ready suc­cess­fully es­tab­lished and tu­ition avail­able. On Satur­day a line of food and other stalls lined the bank, ser­e­naded by a live band.

Ash­ford Bor­ough Coun­cil of­fi­cers wel­comed the public with a smile, and over­saw taster ses­sions for the public to en­joy the ac­tiv­i­ties. A safety launch was at hand but not needed.

Af­ter some eight years of re­search, talks and com­mit­tees, the Lakes pro­ject seems fi­nally to be off the start­ing blocks.

When I was a coun­cil­lor and chair­man of the Julie Rose Sta­dium Trust, it seemed to me to be a nat­u­ral for a na­tional-class track and field ath­let­ics sta­dium to be along­side a na­tional-class wa­ter park.

The dream is be­ing re­alised, but there is much work to be done to achieve the full po­ten­tial of the site.

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