Southwark Council may start charging to use Brimmington Park pitches

Katherine Johnston (20 November, 2019) Sport

"Local children are going to be excluded. These are some of the last free to use all-weather pitches in the borough.”

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Football players could soon be charged to use Brimmington Park’s pitches after a consultation residents say was rushed through.

Alex Beard, from Peckham wrote to the News after realising a Southwark Council consultation on renovations to the Culmore Road park also included details about a booking system that most park users were unaware of.

Information boards put up at the park included information about a “dedicated reception area” but nothing about payment.

The council’s website, however, explained: “The proposed new facility will include a dedicated reception with a controlled entrance.

“We will look to implement the council’s fees and charges for use of the new pitches which will contribute towards maintenance of the facility and staffing costs.”

Alex told the News: “To me, this feels like a negative move for park users especially local children.

“Those pitches are so well used and the beauty of them is that you can turn up and play with friends.

“I feel a booking or payment system would ruin that. Local children are going to be excluded.

“These are some of the last free to use all-weather pitches in the borough.”

Caroline Bruce, strategic director of environment and leisure at Southwark Council, said the consultation was still in progress – but fell short of committing to reverse the plans to charge for the pitches.

“We are currently working through the valued feedback, so that the second phase of consultation can seek to address the concerns raised – in particular those related to access to the pitches,” she said.

“The next consultation will be ready to go live in early 2020 and we hope that everyone with an interest in the facilities will take the time to let us know what they think.”

 

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