CROYDON COMMENTARY: Regular reader ANDREW MURRAY (no, not that one) provides an example of the anger that is mounting among residents over the council’s failed management
Croydon, like so many small towns in the UK, lives in the shadow of its big brother. Unlike most, Croydon wants a share of that limelight and cannot see why they should get on with being themselves when there is a bigger share to be had.
Sadly, all those towns look like central Croydon, run-down, gang-infested, homeless people everywhere. A mess. And the irony is that the cities they want to emulate are not in much better shape either.
In my opinion, Croydon Council went bust because of those that wanted a bigger share of the London pie.
The question now is what should be done? We all know housing is required, we all know that better shopping facilities are required and the realists among us all knew that Westfield was never going to be the answer.
The Allders building was a great place to shop until those traders were forced out (by our own council, on behalf of Westfield), some into alternative premises but others who disappeared altogether. At least when it was open, there was occupancy, and occupancy means work and a shop front that isn’t just dirty windows.
Croydon needs to be run by those with an interest in Croydon. People who want to get their hands dirty for a reasonable wage, not exorbitant pay packets for sitting on their backsides.
Croydon has good transport links to virtually the whole country. We could be doing so much more without trying to be London.
We need the theatres and nightlife back. We need the shops full of people buying goods, and not just a load of Pound Shops, useful though they are.
But first we need a town that looks like we want people to come here.
So instead of continuously slamming the old council administration, let’s get rid of them altogether and make it so they cannot stand for public office again.
Let’s make something positive and create something new.
So that when you say, “I live in Croydon”, people are envious and wish they lived here, instead of laughing in your face.
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