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Why no dogs here?

ON SATURDAY we thought we would take our dog Norbert around the park and then attend the South African event in the Civic hall.

When we entered, money in hand to pay to enter we were told No dogs allowed as Wiltshire Council have now decided dogs are not allowed in the hall. They did suggest tying him up outside.

With the amount of crime in Trowbridge with purses being snatched and bicycles being taken (reported weekly in the Wiltshire Times) I am definitely not going to be tying my dog up anywhere.

Previously we had attended other events in the Civic hall (some with food stalls) and Norbert can still go into the tourist information centre (part of this building) where he has appeared on their Facebook page and always gets a fuss from the lovely friendly staff.

I have received a message back on Facebook from Wiltshire Council telling me the hall isn’t suitable for dogs. Haven’t these people seen Crufts. Big hall, food stalls and televised.

We were made to feel like social lepers just for being dog owners.

Don’t the Council realise dog owners also like spending money in Trowbridge?

We ended up going to Leykers cafe (serve food and let dogs in) for a smoothie and then went home very angry.

We did attend the Frome artisan market in Somerset on Sunday where we were able to spend money and had a lovely time.We had also recently returned from holiday in North Wales where businesses are friendly towards dogs and their owners. What a difference.

I take it I plus the other dog owners of Trowbridge will be receiving a refund on their council tax for not being able to use this (plus probably other) venues in the town.

Kevin Barnett, Trowbridge

Lions say thanks

ON behalf of the Members of The Lions Club of Bradford on Avon, I would like to thank all Members of the Public who supported our 24th Family Fun Day and Car Boot sale on Bank Holiday Monday 27th May.

After covering our expenses we are expected to show a surplus of approximately £3000 on our takings. This will be placed in our Charitable Trust Fund and will be used to fund worthwhile local and national causes.

The winners of the Duck Race were as follows: 1 £50 Duck No 166 N Crucifix of Trowbridge; 2 £25 Duck No 186 S Cottle of BOA; 3 Bottle of Wine Duck No 164 C Lockley (please call 01225 865851); 4 Bottle of Wine Duck No 10 A Crucifix of Surrey; 5 Bottle of Wine Duck No 204 K Yates of BOA.

Brian Hersee, Fun Day Co-ordinator, Bradford on Avon Lions Club

Let verges bloom

I AM delighted to see a recent article about Somerset Council stopping cutting verges to allow wild flowers to grow. When will Wiltshire Council get its head out of the sand and follow suit, saving our wildflowers and money as well? We really need to get over the obsession with ‘tidy ‘ on an individual basis too, come on Wiltshire folk - go wild!

Perhaps a tree planting initiative might follow along those desolate stretches of verge like the link road from Hilperton to Trowbridge...

Jacqui Prior, Address supplied

Villages can help

INTERESTINGLY, your paper last week carried two pieces relating to Trowbridge Town Council and the surrounding parishes.

The first was suggesting that the parishes might care to contribute to the running costs of Trowbridge Museum. Might one ask the simple question ‘Why?’ How about charging an admission fee?

The second seemed far more sensible – that parishes should contribute to the cost of the Trowbridge LINK service according to how much use is made of the service by their residents. In fact, I am tempted to ask why have the parish councils not been approached in the past by Trowbridge LINK?

Having seen a spreadsheet showing usage by surrounding parishes I would hope that all the parishes would agree to fund their fair share of the cost. I know that Hilperton PC used to fund transport costs for their residents to the Sunday Lunch Club in Trowbridge.

I am sure that all the parishes would like to hear from their residents when these two matters appear on their local parish council agendas.

Ernie Clark, Chairman, Hilperton Parish Council, Stonelea, Hilperton

LINK’s funding

THANK you for printing the report of Trowbridge Link’s 20th birthday celebrations and also its recent AGM in last week’s Wiltshire Times. However, the final two paragraphs in the article on the birthday party are incorrect as Trowbridge Link is not funded by Wiltshire Council nor does it “provide operational advice and guidance to 21 community minibus schemes locally” or “support communities in Wiltshire wanting to establish new community transport solutions”. This is the role of Community First, the umbrella organisation which assists the 45 Link schemes across Wiltshire and Swindon.

As Cllr Edward Kirk notes in his letter to the editor in the same issue of the Wiltshire Times, Trowbridge Link receives a core grant from Trowbridge Town Council which helps towards the day to day administration costs of our organisation. However, the mileage payments which are made to our volunteer drivers to help cover the costs of their petrol, parking charges, and the wear and tear on their vehicles rely entirely upon the donations which our clients make when we take them to their medical appointments and social group meetings, or when we go shopping for the housebound members of our community. Without these client donations, Trowbridge Link would cease to exist.

Sue Holt, Press Officer, Trowbridge Area Community Link Scheme

We apologise to Link for the incorrect information in last week’s article and any embarrassment caused: Editor

Open letter to MP

DEAR Dr Murrison, I’ve no doubt that you along with your parliamentary colleagues will all be receiving some form of contact from constituents following the Panorama programme last night & I do hope that you too, watched it.

If you did, then you, along with ALL MPs should be thoroughly ashamed of yourselves for allowing this disgraceful situation to get out of hand & to this extent.

You should all reflect on this when next you sit in your extremely privileged surroundings in the houses of parliament.

I hold each & every MP & Lord or Lady equally responsible as for far too many years, the problem has been overlooked, whilst many other far less important items have been funded to the detriment of basic care of the people whom you are all supposed to serve & care for.

If there truly is a shortage of money then it is time to take a careful look at the priorities upon which PUBLIC money is to be spent.

Let me give you just five examples of where money could be saved & better utilized on Social Care:-

1. Drastically reduce the numbers in the House of Lords, you’ve been talking about it for years, say by 50% & you tell me how much that would save annually?

2. Cancel HS2, that would save on current estimates some £54billion & in reality, probably double that. We cannot afford this type of project, neither do we need it.

3. Locally, stop the ridiculous & totally unwarranted proposal to tunnel the A303 past Stonehenge, for a saving of £1.6billion.

4. Again locally, stop Wiltshire Council promoting the replacement of three special needs schools with ONE, at a cost of £20million.

5. Wiltshire Council should also look at drastically reducing the number of councillors, by at least 50% for saving of £1million annually.

You & your party need also to remind Labour & the country, that they (Labour), took office in 1997 with a healthy surplus & left office in 2010, with a deficit & left a crass note for the incoming chancellor.

Why is it that England has less, a THIRD LESS, per capita spent on care, as compared with Wales & Scotland?

If you & the Conservative party wish to be seriously considered for government again, you need to address this funding problem as a matter of urgency, along with Education, Health (the NHS) & Social Services as the main priority. Lead by example.

Philip Withers, Trowbridge

Unlock our loos

Re closing Trowbridge Town Park loos, I have been emailing my councillor and she has told me that members of the public can use castle place and Wetherspoons toilets when the civic centre is closed.

Neither of these is an easy option for a wheelchair user, but her reply was ‘we can’t please everybody and there are options to suit disabled people’ . Sadly this isn’t true.

The pub loo has heavy entrance doors into pub, a heavy door to open with limited space to manouvre around the opening door and get into loo, limited space to turn a wheelchair and for those who need a person to help them. It is a noisy environment which affects sensory overload.

There are steps to the non-adapted loos which will be an obstacle for anyone with a childs buggy, and I think its quite reasonable for parents with kids of opposite gender to not feel comfortable sending them in alone, so they would be with in reason of using ‘accessible/disabled’ loo.

The accessible loo in Castle Place is tucked behind the cafe and is only accessible in as far as there are no steps, again a narrow corridor, small cubicle etc.

Our town park is a beautiful green space that we should all be allowed to enjoy. It is a huge step backwards removing the toilet block. I accept they weren’t fantastic but they worked.

Can you please challenge the councillors to explain why there are only two options, expensive renovations or closing them? Why can’t we just keep the block that we have?

I am trying very hard not to see a link between the new flats and the way they overlook the toilet block.. surely our council isn’t that shallow

Tareen Mitchell, Trowbridge

All one problem

MAY I just ask how the Extinction Rebellion kids would like their plastic signs and plastic cable ties they have put all over the place, disposed of once the climate has been sorted out?

Marina Lamming, Chippenham

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