Friday, 25 February 2011

Southcote benefits from Decent Neighbourhoods Cash

This morning I went to Virginia Way in Southcote to help launch the new 'outdoor gym' which has been built paid for out of the Council's unique Decent Neighbourhoods Fund. This was created following a request from residents in the area. Southcote has an older population than most of Reading so it is important that the Council provides activities for the many older people who live in the area so they can stay active and healthy for as long as possible.
 Residents were involved in selecting the equipment and road-testing it first.
Talking to older residents who came along for the press launch they were delighted to see the new gym in place. It was clear talking to them that this new gym would meet a need in the area and help keep older people active. They told me that at the moment the nearest gym is at Prospect School (and this is not free!).
I spoke to a couple of older ladies about other Council matters and they were really pleased to hear they would be getting a Council Tax freeze - the first for many years.I am so pleased that the Budget we agreed on Tuesday includes £400,000 to be spent in the next financial year on improvements to estates and neighbourhoods across the Borough. How sad that Labour councillors voted against this along with our plans to continue to invest in Council housing across the Borough .
The next area set to benefit from the DNF is the Aveley Walk Play area in Katesgrove - a neglected area that Lib Dem councillors have long campaigned to be improved.

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