For people who get the Lytham St Annes Express it seems that I appear to be the most hated man in Fylde, with letters every week slating me for the decisions I take on behalf of the council and the schemes I seem to support.

Upper most is Lowther Charging and the Les Dawson Statue!

I think I’ve made the case several time for why Lowther Gardens has to charge and start contributing to the massive £134,000 it costs all tax payers in Fylde, including all people in Wesham and Rural Fylde, many of who don’t use the gardens.

The other angle people use to attack the decision is the Covenant that talks about free use of the park. That argument is a double edged sword, in as much as if we followed the letter of the Covenant, we’d not have the Pavilion, bird Avery, tennis courts, play park, bowling greens, or the games huts, as the Covenants demand that the park is left unbuilt on. The other point is we’re not charging people to use the park, just those who chose to drive and park their cars at the park.

Other people talk about the petition that was handed in with 2,000 plus names on it. When you inspect the petition the statement at the top is ‘Stop the Charges’ well I’d sign that it so vague, there is no counter argument, no justification, in fact it is pretty meaningless. And then we get on to the names that have signed it. About half live outside the borough, so pay neither through parking charges or the Council Tax for the gardens.

So 1,000 Fylde residents sign a petition, that just leave the 75,000 Fylde Residents who did not sign it. Who should we put the greater weight with????

Les Dawson seems to be getting several people hot under the collar. At this stage it is important to say two things. No Tax Payers money will be used to build the statue and secondly Fylde Borough Council will offer the same level of support to any organisation that can assure us of raising enough money for any statue of a famous local person (within reason).

The fact that some people don’t like Les Dawson is no reason to not build a statue, I’m sure there are 60 million French people who don’t like Wellington or Nelson, but it was no reason not to build a statue of them!

Then some people say that Les was not local. Well he made a decision to move here, which in my book makes him as local as those who had the fortune to have been born here. He laid down his roots and bought a house and started a family here, what more is there to do to make you local? We’re not Royston Vasey.

The kind of petty and snobbish view that you have to have several generations of family before you can call yourself Fylde is as outdated as burning witches. I was not born in Fylde and I’d challenge anyone to argue I don’t care passionately about this part of England and not be able to call myself local.

However, as always I’d like to here your views on both these subjects. Please e-mail simon@wesham.com