LETTER: Car parks fine, but the toilets...

When speaking about the proposed new charges at a number of the Worthing town-centre multi-storey car parks, Diane Guest, the council's executive member for environment, was quoted in the Herald as saying that having sufficient high-quality parking is critical to Worthing's local economy, and that the town's multi-storeys are quite often the first thing visitors see.

I would like to point out to Diane that, if motorists have travelled some distance to visit the town, the second thing they probably see are the car park toilets.

I can only assume that Worthing’s councillors, to coin a phrase, ‘go before they leave home’, because, if they don’t, they would soon discover that these facilities are disgusting and do the town no credit whatsoever.

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I have no knowledge, obviously, of the condition of the ladies’ facilities, but perhaps she could get one of her male colleagues to try out the mens’ at, for example, the multi-story above the Guildbourne Centre and report back to her.

He would probably start off by saying something like, ‘Last Monday I made my first visit to these toilets and can assure you, Diane, that it will be my last!’. Surely there is little point in aiming for high-quality parking if, at the same time, we have low-quality – very low-quality – toilets.

So, how about installing what would be, literally ’pay as you go’ gates at these toilets, with the receipts being used to ensure that the quality of the toilets match the quality of the car parks?

Also, last week Tim Drew, in his Neighbourhood Watch column (Worthing and Lancing Heralds only), raised a couple of points that, in my opinion, are worthy of comment.

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He indicated that 80 per cent of respondents to a survey, carried out by the Sussex Police and Crime Commissioner, indicated that they would be prepared to pay an extra £10 towards policing.

However, statistics are meaningless unless the numbers on which they are based are also quoted, and this is a typical example.

In actual fact just 4,500 people answered the survey and the number agreeing with the increase was 3,600.

That works out at just 0.02 per cent of the county’s population; hardly a ringing endorsement, I would have thought, for Ms Bourne’s suggestion that the county’s residents should pay this extra money.

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Tim also said that ten people have been identified as being responsible for 80 per cent of crime in Worthing.

I wonder if, on our behalf, he can follow this up and find out if anyone in authority can answer the following questions: Where are these ten people now? How many of them have been arrested, tried for their offences, been found guilty and sent to prison? How many of them have been arrested, tried for their offences, been found guilty and given suspended sentences?

The people of Worthing will get, at least, a breathing space from the activities of the first group but I cannot be the only Herald reader who has doubts about those in the second who will, if they feel so inclined, be able to continue blighting the lives of the town’s residents.

Eric Waters

Ingleside Crescent


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