Priory Memorial Gardens floodlights to be installed this winter

PLANS to install floodlighting at a multi-games area will go ahead, despite another Royston councillor voicing his concerns about the �30,000 scheme.

North Herts District Council wants to install the floodlights at the multi-games area in Priory Memorial Gardens. Having already received the backing of Royston Town Council, the district council’s planning committee approved the scheme last Thursday.

Speaking at the meeting, Palace ward district councillor Robert Inwood voiced his support for concerned residents, worried that the floodlighting might cause noise disturbance and lead to vandalism.

“The outcome was disappointing. I think once the scheme is in place it will need monitoring,” said Cllr Inwood.

“If we are talking about helping young people then this money could be used on other projects, such as improvements to the skateboard park.”

Cllr Inwood, who is not a member of the planning committee, added that he did not feel the plans represented an appropriate legacy for the London 2012 Olympics.

“The legacy from the Olympic Games will be youngsters joining sports clubs and being giver proper coaching,” he said.

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Cllr Bill Davidson, who represents the Meridian ward on the district council, said: “I think it will be a good thing because it will mean the multi-games area is available for youngsters to use in the dark evenings.

“Hopefully it will encourage more of the youth groups to use the park.”

North Herts District Council wants to install the floodlights to bring the Royston multi-games area into line with similar facilities in other parts of the district.

Steve Geach, parks and countryside development manager at the district council, said: “We want to maximise the time that it can be in use, especially during the dark winter months.

“This is the only multi games area in North Herts which does not currently benefit from floodlights – similar facilities in Letchworth, Baldock and Hitchin are all floodlit.”

When the plans came before Royston Town Council’s planning committee, Cllr Robert Smith suggested the council should have “better things to spend their money on,” but the floodlights still won the committee’s support.

They are likely to be installed this winter.