Tourism will be hit by these cuts

Southport Visiter - - Visiter Active -

SEFTON Coun­cil is less than a month away from set­ting its bud­get for the year - and with such sav­ings to make, it’s in­evitable we’ll see some harsh cost-cut­ting mea­sures put in place.

The coun­cil has pro­posed slash­ing its tourism bud­get and look­ing to in­crease rev­enue from other ar­eas.

Pair this with The Atkinson’s pro­posed re­duced open­ing times, in­creased ticket prices and staff re­dun­dan­cies, and you’re look­ing at a po­ten­tially cat­a­strophic out­come for our town.

The money has to come from some­where, granted, but South­port is a tourist des­ti­na­tion, and any­thing that com­pro­mises this, its tourism mar­ket­ing and pro­vi­sion, could well ruin the lo­cal econ­omy. Per­haps ir­re­versibly so. The coun­cil ar­gues that, long-term, it would prove ben­e­fi­cial to the bor­ough with ac­tiv­i­ties be­com­ing cost-neu­tral, and even­tu­ally even mak­ing a profit.

This, the bud­get re­port states, will mean vis­i­tors re­ceive a higher than ex­pected qual­ity of ser­vice.

Res­i­dents, it says, will ben­e­fit from new events, ser­vices and fa­cil­i­ties, made af­ford­able by money gen­er­ated from tourists com­ing into the area.

The coun­cil also pre­dicts more ser­vices to be­come ‘self-sus­tain­ing’, with more jobs cre­ated and re­tained, and says ‘more peo­ple will hear about and visit Sefton’. But this begs an all-im­por­tant ques­tion: If the coun­cil gen­uinely be­lieves it can im­prove tourism, in­crease vis­i­tor num­bers and cre­ate more jobs for the lo­cal com­mu­nity - even with these cuts be­ing made - why have they never done it be­fore now?

RE­STORE OUR TOWN

IT was in­ter­est­ing to read the ar­ti­cle about an­other cloth­ing shop pos­si­bly clos­ing down.

I feel that I have slowly watched South­port de­te­ri­o­rate over the last 20 years.

It would be great to see classy South­port again, with old world Vic­to­rian charm.

Let’s di­rect some money back into South­port and re­store it.

Fiona via email

SUR­FACE TEN­SION

THE rea­son why the resur­fac­ing of Kenilworth Road, Ains­dale, was un­suc­cess­ful was that the work was done dur­ing a par­tic­u­larly cold snap and whilst it was pour­ing down with rain at the be­gin­ning of Oc­to­ber.

I saw them do­ing it and re­mem­ber think­ing, ‘that’s not go­ing to work!’ Lo and behold it didn’t. What a sur­prise! Road resur­fac­ing needs to be done in the sum­mer months when it’s warm so the chip­pings will bed in to the soft bi­tu­men.

So why wasn’t the work done ear­lier in the year?

Why did the coun­cil al­low it to be done so late in the year?

Was any­body in the coun­cil ac­tu­ally mon­i­tor­ing and man­ag­ing the con­tract?

As a con­cerned coun­cil tax­payer who lives in Kenilworth Road I wrote to the coun­cil be­fore Christ­mas ask­ing about this.

As of lunchtime on Feb 3, no one has given me the cour­tesy of a re­sponse - but I guar­an­tee they will write to me in plenty of time to tell me my coun­cil tax has in­creased con­sid­er­ably more than my state pen­sion has! David Allen Ains­dale

NO, COUN­CIL­LOR

WITH hardly a week go­ing by with­out a coun­cil­lor de­mand­ing that the num­ber of coun­cil­lors on Sefton Coun­cil be culled by a third, I am re­minded of the tele­vi­sion se­ries Yes Prime Min­is­ter, where Jim Hacker de­cided to re­duce the num­ber of civil ser­vants.

Ev­ery head of depart­ment agreed that the num­bers should be culled, but then put up a strong ar­gu­ment why his or her depart­ment not only shouldn’t be touched, but in­deed, needed more peo­ple to func­tion prop­erly.

So, this brings me to re­duc­ing Sefton num­bers.

Doubt­less ev­ery coun­cil­lor ar­gu­ing for such a cull will then (if it hap­pens) put up a good ar­gu­ment for why they should be ex­cluded.

So, should we re­duce the num­bers of coun­cil­lors?

“Yes Prime Min­is­ter.”

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