The next time Croydon’s Labour-run council belly aches about grant cuts from central Government – after all, another 150-or-so council staff are expected to be made redundant in the coming 12 months under Tory “austerity” measures – just remind them of the South End Food Festival.
Tony Newman, Labour’s council leader, claimed yesterday that, “We absolutely came to the rescue”, of an event which had failed to find a commercial sponsor for 2015. And Croydon Council is coughing up 10 times as much cash as Tesco did when the supermarket sponsored the same event as recently as 2013.
Croydon Council Tax-payers will be paying £20,000 towards the cost of staging the one-day event on June 28, the benefits of which to the wider community are hard to establish, while businesses in and around South End continue to close.
This council’s largesse comes on top of another chunk of public cash, £148,000, which is being paid to the organisers of a one-day cycle racing event staged in the town centre next week, as was exclusively revealed by Inside Croydon. Austerity? Not at Croydon Town Hall when it comes to bread and circuses, it seems. Continue reading