Parties pledge to keep historic Lydiard Park

This Is Wiltshire: Parties pledge to keep historic Lydiard Park Parties pledge to keep historic Lydiard Park

THE three party leaders in Swindon Council have each committed to not selling Lydiard Park in the future.

It follows a row which erupted last week after claims from Labour that there were plans to sell the historic site as part of the council’s leisure and culture programme.

This was quickly and strongly denied by the Conservatives, who say it is a proposal which has never been on the cards or even discussed.

The Labour Group launched a petition last week which they said people could sign to safeguard the future of Lydiard House and prevent it from being sold into private hands.

This was met with an open letter on Monday signed by every Tory councillor and prospective councillor stating a determination to secure the long term future of the house and gardens, through an increase in commercial activities such as wedding hire and the cafe.

Now the leaders of the Conservatives, Labour and Liberal Democrats have each committed to keeping the house in council ownership.

Coun David Renard (Con, Haydon Wick), the leader of Swindon Council said: “Lydiard is not and has never been considered for sale. “Senior Labour councillors know this, and are involved on the council’s working party which is discussing the difficult questions of how to come up with sustainable futures of the town's parks and heritage facilities. They cannot plead ignorance.

“Our ambition is for there to be more commercial and charitable activities happening at Lydiard so that we can increase both visitor numbers and income, meaning the park is much less reliant on public subsidy. “It is a subject which has not ever been considered and if it ever comes up there are now 29 Conservatives who will object to it.”

The Leader of the Labour Group Jim Grant (Lab, Rodbourne Cheney) said that keeping Lydiard Park under the control of the council would be a key part of any Labour administration.

He said: “I am delighted to commit that any future Labour administration will keep Lydiard Park and house under Swindon Council ownership.

“Lydiard Park is one of the greatest features of Swindon, used by thousands of people throughout the year and the fact it can be enjoyed by everyone as it is a public space is something Swindon can be proud of.

“What’s more, I can commit that there will be no sale of any of Swindon’s other country parks under Labour.”

Coun Stan Pajak (Lib Dem, Eastcott) believes it was a scare story. He said: “It has never been a subject up for discussion nor should it be. Lydiard Park is such an important part of Swindon. Getting rid of it is something we would never consider.”

Comments (17)

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6:51am Wed 5 Mar 14

MrHappy says...

Interesting. Do the Conservatives pledge to keep Lydiard Park under the management and control of the council or only that they won't sell it off? They also haven't pledged to keep all the other parks such as Stanton and Coate under the council's control.

The Conservatives want Lydiard to turn a profit. What does that mean for park users in future?
Interesting. Do the Conservatives pledge to keep Lydiard Park under the management and control of the council or only that they won't sell it off? They also haven't pledged to keep all the other parks such as Stanton and Coate under the council's control. The Conservatives want Lydiard to turn a profit. What does that mean for park users in future? MrHappy
  • Score: 3

7:10am Wed 5 Mar 14

house on the hill says...

MrHappy wrote:
Interesting. Do the Conservatives pledge to keep Lydiard Park under the management and control of the council or only that they won't sell it off? They also haven't pledged to keep all the other parks such as Stanton and Coate under the council's control.

The Conservatives want Lydiard to turn a profit. What does that mean for park users in future?
It means use it or lose it. Its all very well people being outraged by the possibility of it being sold or leased, but if the vast majority don't use it what does that tell you? I hope it is used more and stays being for the people of Swindon.
[quote][p][bold]MrHappy[/bold] wrote: Interesting. Do the Conservatives pledge to keep Lydiard Park under the management and control of the council or only that they won't sell it off? They also haven't pledged to keep all the other parks such as Stanton and Coate under the council's control. The Conservatives want Lydiard to turn a profit. What does that mean for park users in future?[/p][/quote]It means use it or lose it. Its all very well people being outraged by the possibility of it being sold or leased, but if the vast majority don't use it what does that tell you? I hope it is used more and stays being for the people of Swindon. house on the hill
  • Score: 2

7:19am Wed 5 Mar 14

MrHappy says...

Use it or loose it? Whenever I visit Lydiard, it is always busy and in the summer it is packed out. Haven't the people of Swindon already paid for this park?

Well done to the Adver for upping the ante on this. Can the council party leaders now pledge to save Stanton, Coate, the Platform and STEAM? Can they also pledge to stop the 99-year leases on our leisure facilities? The Link Centre and Croft will be gone to the private sector imminently on a 99-year lease if the Conservatives have their way.

But the Conservatives would say that isn't selling off!
Use it or loose it? Whenever I visit Lydiard, it is always busy and in the summer it is packed out. Haven't the people of Swindon already paid for this park? Well done to the Adver for upping the ante on this. Can the council party leaders now pledge to save Stanton, Coate, the Platform and STEAM? Can they also pledge to stop the 99-year leases on our leisure facilities? The Link Centre and Croft will be gone to the private sector imminently on a 99-year lease if the Conservatives have their way. But the Conservatives would say that isn't selling off! MrHappy
  • Score: 5

7:32am Wed 5 Mar 14

stfcdod says...

MrHappy wrote:
Use it or loose it? Whenever I visit Lydiard, it is always busy and in the summer it is packed out. Haven't the people of Swindon already paid for this park?

Well done to the Adver for upping the ante on this. Can the council party leaders now pledge to save Stanton, Coate, the Platform and STEAM? Can they also pledge to stop the 99-year leases on our leisure facilities? The Link Centre and Croft will be gone to the private sector imminently on a 99-year lease if the Conservatives have their way.

But the Conservatives would say that isn't selling off!
Why don't you just list another hundred or so rumours that also aren't true? This is typical Labour Party scaremongering. You're out of office and out of most people's minds. Hopefully you'll never again be elected, to bankrupt the country or local authority.
[quote][p][bold]MrHappy[/bold] wrote: Use it or loose it? Whenever I visit Lydiard, it is always busy and in the summer it is packed out. Haven't the people of Swindon already paid for this park? Well done to the Adver for upping the ante on this. Can the council party leaders now pledge to save Stanton, Coate, the Platform and STEAM? Can they also pledge to stop the 99-year leases on our leisure facilities? The Link Centre and Croft will be gone to the private sector imminently on a 99-year lease if the Conservatives have their way. But the Conservatives would say that isn't selling off![/p][/quote]Why don't you just list another hundred or so rumours that also aren't true? This is typical Labour Party scaremongering. You're out of office and out of most people's minds. Hopefully you'll never again be elected, to bankrupt the country or local authority. stfcdod
  • Score: -5

7:32am Wed 5 Mar 14

Al Smith says...

So they might still lease it out though? A 99 year lease would be a as good as selling it but a politician could turn around and, perfectly correctly, say "we haven't sold it, we've leased it".
So they might still lease it out though? A 99 year lease would be a as good as selling it but a politician could turn around and, perfectly correctly, say "we haven't sold it, we've leased it". Al Smith
  • Score: 4

8:17am Wed 5 Mar 14

house on the hill says...

Al Smith wrote:
So they might still lease it out though? A 99 year lease would be a as good as selling it but a politician could turn around and, perfectly correctly, say "we haven't sold it, we've leased it".
Politicians are like bananas, You almost never find a straight one of any side or persuasion. This town and its heritage are a complete mess thanks to idiotic decisions and indecision on all sides. Selling or leasing Lydiard would be a massive statement from the Council that they basically have no idea how to run this town or anything for that meter. A complete joke.
[quote][p][bold]Al Smith[/bold] wrote: So they might still lease it out though? A 99 year lease would be a as good as selling it but a politician could turn around and, perfectly correctly, say "we haven't sold it, we've leased it".[/p][/quote]Politicians are like bananas, You almost never find a straight one of any side or persuasion. This town and its heritage are a complete mess thanks to idiotic decisions and indecision on all sides. Selling or leasing Lydiard would be a massive statement from the Council that they basically have no idea how to run this town or anything for that meter. A complete joke. house on the hill
  • Score: 4

9:50am Wed 5 Mar 14

GroundhogDay says...

I know for a fact the current council have approached an organisation to gauge interest in running Lydiard.

The current council are inherently deceitful. They're currently running their consultation about the leisure change programme to find out public opinion but they've been showing prospective businesses the sites since Autumn 2013 - perhaps even earlier. It's pretty much signed and sealed so the consultation is just an exercise.

Unfortunately I don't think 90% of the population really give a toss what the council does. Certainly not enough to kick up a fuss. Apathy seems common in Swindon.
I know for a fact the current council have approached an organisation to gauge interest in running Lydiard. The current council are inherently deceitful. They're currently running their consultation about the leisure change programme to find out public opinion but they've been showing prospective businesses the sites since Autumn 2013 - perhaps even earlier. It's pretty much signed and sealed so the consultation is just an exercise. Unfortunately I don't think 90% of the population really give a toss what the council does. Certainly not enough to kick up a fuss. Apathy seems common in Swindon. GroundhogDay
  • Score: 4

10:11am Wed 5 Mar 14

Davey Gravey says...

What about broome manor, the link centre and other public leisure facilities, coate water, green spaces given to housing developers, etc. Ask the 3 leaders that please adver
What about broome manor, the link centre and other public leisure facilities, coate water, green spaces given to housing developers, etc. Ask the 3 leaders that please adver Davey Gravey
  • Score: 4

10:39am Wed 5 Mar 14

Richard Symonds says...

Neither the Conservatives or the Liberals have undertaken to keep Lydiard under the CONTROL of Swindon Borough Council. Forget what they are saying and see what they are not saying!!

As an Independent Candidate for Shaw I support anyone who is prepared to state categorically that Lydiard remains under the CONTROL of Swindon Borough Council.
Neither the Conservatives or the Liberals have undertaken to keep Lydiard under the CONTROL of Swindon Borough Council. Forget what they are saying and see what they are not saying!! As an Independent Candidate for Shaw I support anyone who is prepared to state categorically that Lydiard remains under the CONTROL of Swindon Borough Council. Richard Symonds
  • Score: 1

10:45am Wed 5 Mar 14

Chrisg46 says...

So basically the story is that nothing has changed ie no story in the first place?
So basically the story is that nothing has changed ie no story in the first place? Chrisg46
  • Score: 0

11:01am Wed 5 Mar 14

A.Baron-Cohen says...

GroundhogDay wrote:
I know for a fact the current council have approached an organisation to gauge interest in running Lydiard.

The current council are inherently deceitful. They're currently running their consultation about the leisure change programme to find out public opinion but they've been showing prospective businesses the sites since Autumn 2013 - perhaps even earlier. It's pretty much signed and sealed so the consultation is just an exercise.

Unfortunately I don't think 90% of the population really give a toss what the council does. Certainly not enough to kick up a fuss. Apathy seems common in Swindon.
voting is very much a waste of time
[quote][p][bold]GroundhogDay[/bold] wrote: I know for a fact the current council have approached an organisation to gauge interest in running Lydiard. The current council are inherently deceitful. They're currently running their consultation about the leisure change programme to find out public opinion but they've been showing prospective businesses the sites since Autumn 2013 - perhaps even earlier. It's pretty much signed and sealed so the consultation is just an exercise. Unfortunately I don't think 90% of the population really give a toss what the council does. Certainly not enough to kick up a fuss. Apathy seems common in Swindon.[/p][/quote]voting is very much a waste of time A.Baron-Cohen
  • Score: -2

11:09am Wed 5 Mar 14

MrHappy says...

Richard Symonds wrote:
Neither the Conservatives or the Liberals have undertaken to keep Lydiard under the CONTROL of Swindon Borough Council. Forget what they are saying and see what they are not saying!!

As an Independent Candidate for Shaw I support anyone who is prepared to state categorically that Lydiard remains under the CONTROL of Swindon Borough Council.
Yes, I just re-read the article. There is only one pledge to keep Lydiard in council control. The other two party leaders have used a lot of words to not say very much.
[quote][p][bold]Richard Symonds[/bold] wrote: Neither the Conservatives or the Liberals have undertaken to keep Lydiard under the CONTROL of Swindon Borough Council. Forget what they are saying and see what they are not saying!! As an Independent Candidate for Shaw I support anyone who is prepared to state categorically that Lydiard remains under the CONTROL of Swindon Borough Council.[/p][/quote]Yes, I just re-read the article. There is only one pledge to keep Lydiard in council control. The other two party leaders have used a lot of words to not say very much. MrHappy
  • Score: 4

11:57am Wed 5 Mar 14

Davey Gravey says...

The lib dem leader appears to be in the pocket of the Tories, just like clegg on a national level. The Mongol comment ongoing fiasco a prime example.
The lib dem leader appears to be in the pocket of the Tories, just like clegg on a national level. The Mongol comment ongoing fiasco a prime example. Davey Gravey
  • Score: 2

12:22pm Wed 5 Mar 14

stratton man says...

I wish Richard Symonds well in his attempt to win the Shaw seat in the May elections.The main parties would be horrified at the idea of an honest man sittng in the Council chamber.We need some Independants in power to uncover the slimy deals being done behind closed doors.
I wish Richard Symonds well in his attempt to win the Shaw seat in the May elections.The main parties would be horrified at the idea of an honest man sittng in the Council chamber.We need some Independants in power to uncover the slimy deals being done behind closed doors. stratton man
  • Score: 0

1:10pm Wed 5 Mar 14

house on the hill says...

stratton man wrote:
I wish Richard Symonds well in his attempt to win the Shaw seat in the May elections.The main parties would be horrified at the idea of an honest man sittng in the Council chamber.We need some Independants in power to uncover the slimy deals being done behind closed doors.
Agree completely with the sentiment but not sure what 1 man on their own would achieve or even half a dozen against those already entrenched. For me we would be better off without politics involved where national decisions or pressure override what is actually best for Swindon. Add in some real accountability for actions and decisions and maybe more thought would be given in first place before the c0ck up is made.
[quote][p][bold]stratton man[/bold] wrote: I wish Richard Symonds well in his attempt to win the Shaw seat in the May elections.The main parties would be horrified at the idea of an honest man sittng in the Council chamber.We need some Independants in power to uncover the slimy deals being done behind closed doors.[/p][/quote]Agree completely with the sentiment but not sure what 1 man on their own would achieve or even half a dozen against those already entrenched. For me we would be better off without politics involved where national decisions or pressure override what is actually best for Swindon. Add in some real accountability for actions and decisions and maybe more thought would be given in first place before the c0ck up is made. house on the hill
  • Score: 0

9:10pm Wed 5 Mar 14

Noah's Ark says...

They should sell Lydiard Park to a hotel grouo such as De Vere or Marriott and develop the house into a 5 star hotel.

Alternatively it would be a good place to build houses
They should sell Lydiard Park to a hotel grouo such as De Vere or Marriott and develop the house into a 5 star hotel. Alternatively it would be a good place to build houses Noah's Ark
  • Score: 0

9:39pm Wed 5 Mar 14

roberto5 says...

I've mentioned this on the original story about the park, it has been completely mismanaged from the go. It doesn't make any money currently, only the cafe, plant sales and takings from the house and gardens generate a small amount, all in all nothing made. It can't be bank rolled by the local authority any longer, please sell or lease it off so it can be kept for the people of Swindon but be vastly improved.
I've mentioned this on the original story about the park, it has been completely mismanaged from the go. It doesn't make any money currently, only the cafe, plant sales and takings from the house and gardens generate a small amount, all in all nothing made. It can't be bank rolled by the local authority any longer, please sell or lease it off so it can be kept for the people of Swindon but be vastly improved. roberto5
  • Score: 0

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