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Eltham Well Hall Pleasaunce lighting problems are 'disgraceful'
ELTHAM'S Christmas lights may have been switched on but its park has remained in the dark until now, sparking fears over safety.
Leader of Greenwich Conservatives Councillor Spencer Drury says he has been campaigning for nearly a year over a lack of lighting in Well Hall Pleasaunce which has contributed to anti-social behaviour in the area.
Cllr Drury said that by June council officers had established they did not know how to turn the 12-year-old uplighters on because officers had forgotten how they worked.
And in September, he was told new lighting could not be installed this year.
Now, after Cllr Drury raised the issue at a meeting, Greenwich Council leader Councillor Chris Roberts has written to him, saying "a small sum of money exists that could be used to improve the current lighting during 2014/15".
But Cllr Drury said: "This is a sad tale of excuses, mismanagement and time-wasting which is truly disgraceful.
"Putting the people of Eltham first is obviously not their priority.
"I am grateful to Cllr Roberts for finally making this commitment on behalf of the council and only sorry it has taken this long and took the leader stepping in to sort out the council’s chaos."
Marcus Luck, who runs the Tudor Barn venue in the pleasaunce said there had been problems with anti-social behaviour by teenagers in the past, though this has died down.
He said: "We'd definitely support a campaign for more lighting in the pleasaunce.
"Given the success of the Tudor Barn, more and more people are using the pleasaunce and customers do complain its not sufficiently well lit for them, because they have to come in through the park."
A spokesman for Greenwich Council said: “In the past three and a half years, the council has faced in excess of £70m of budget cuts from central government but has worked hard to ensure that not only has provision in libraries, leisure, children's centres and sports provision not been cut, but these services have actually been expanded.
"At the same time we have continued to freeze the Council Tax for seven years in a row.
“However, in the real world, some things have to give, and regrettably this has been one such area although we will continue to work hard to try to see what can be done.
"Keeping our frontline services open and ensuring we do not raise Council Tax has though been our priority through the £70m plus cuts imposed upon us by the coalition government.”
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