Reference the article on page seven of last week’s paper (Getting to the heart of The Phoenix), Claire Griffin stated Daventry is failing its children,
I strongly feel that Claire’s comments are incorrect; I have lived in Daventry for some 38 years, many of these spent engaged with youth sport, mainly football, chairman of Daventry United Juniors, league chairman, etc, and like many others jack of all trades, coaching, lineman, erecting goalposts, fixing nets, marking lines and sometimes refereeing.
On my election to Daventry District Council in 2002 I was given a portfolio role which includes children and young people, one of my passions as they are our future.
So what has been done and what is being done? We have Scouts, Guides, Cadets and many other organisations, the Vineyard youth section which I have been pleased to help, the Phoenix Centre itself is one of the best in the county. Right from the word go I have worked with them and supported them. Was it not the district council which recently allocated a large sum towards the refurbishment of the building.
We have a new and very successful skateboard park at the Rec in which young people were involved in the consultation and the final decision, this was then followed by improvements to the play area.
It is also worth noting we have also improved some other play areas locally. Our country park in a partnership between DDC and the town council has put on free film shows during the summer, and we are also upgrading the play area there.
Something our young people asked for was a cinema, this is now part of the development plans. The partnership between the leisure centre and the DDC is flourishing, I work and liaise with them; their half term camps and rural roadshow events are tremendously successful, and they do not just cover sport.
I have worked and continue to work with all types of club to help with facilities or future projects, it is also important to note that the DDC grants scheme has been able to assist various projects as well.
Finally, Claire mentioned one homeless case, thankfully the district does not have a major problem with this and each case has to be judged by all parties on its merits.
I feel the statements that were made do more harm than good, she has certainly not contacted me in my portfolio role at all on this; these comments are an injustice to the many staff at the district council who give me tremendous support and the many club members and workers who give of their time.
Community culture and leisure portfolio holder Daventry District Council