Protests scupper move to shut recreation site gate

PEOPLE power has led a proposal to close an entrance to a Felpham recreation site to be scrapped.

Arun District Council’s parks and greenspaces department had started an informal consultation about shutting the northern entrance to King George C recreation ground on Summerley Lane.

But the response to the idea from its ward councillors and Felpham Parish Council was so negative the idea will not go any further.

Typical of the objections were those from one of the district councillors for Felpham East, Conservative member John Holman.

He said: “All four corners of the recreation ground have been publically accessible for generations. I believe it would be a retrograde step to close one of them now.

“The fact that entrance is well-used demonstrates that many members of the public find it convenient to enter or exit the park at that point.

“To close off this access point will give them unnecessary and unwarranted inconvenience.”

Any incidents of anti-social behaviour, such as dumped dog waste, were isolated, said Cllr Holman.

The fact the entrance also became muddy in recent winters was due to the council’s failure to maintain it, he claimed.

“In the past, that gateway has been maintained in an accessible condition by the simple occasional application of wood chippings to the surface,” Cllr Holman said.

“Every grassed area in King George V was inaccessible on foot every winter until Felpham Parish Council and others negotiated the installation of a Tarmac path all around the circumference of the park some ten years ago, which has been much used and appreciated.”