Increase in the green fees still value for money

THE figures contained in your front page report (News Guardian, February 2), on the increases in green fees for bowls clubs are worthy of repetition.

Currently, a member of one of these clubs can play all day, every day, for 64p a week.

After the increases contained in the Mayor’s budget proposals, in two years from now, the same member will be able to play all day, every day, for £1.64 per week, which to me still seems like excellent value for money.

I have also checked that each club is currently being subsidised by the taxpayer to the tune of £600.

The fact is, each member of each club is subsidised by the taxpayer to the tune of £600 a year.

I doubt there are many other sports which enjoy such a subsidy, so may be it is time to level the playing field, so to speak, in the interests of fairness.

We all know the financial difficulties councils up and down the country are facing because of the financial deficit inherited.

Locally, there was an overspend of some £17m, yet whenever opposition councillors comment on the efforts to balance such a difficult budget, they simply jump on every proposals and shout it down, without ever explaining how they would deal with the problems.

I trust others will be putting forward an alternative budget in due course and we will be able to see what measures they would take to save £16m from this year’s council budget. It should make for interesting reading.

FRANK AUSTIN

Whitley Bay