City of Edinburgh – Budget Proposals – Clubs’ Meeting Thursday 11 January
Some clubs may have already seen this message, but a reminder from about the Clubs’ Meeting on Thurs 11th January – details as below email.
City of Edinburgh Council Budget Consultation
“I am writing in relation to Proposal 27 in the Budget Consultation which would see the Council seek to recover the full cost of grass cutting charges from Edinburgh Leisure with a creation of an income stream of £375k.
My concerns about this proposal are based on concerns about the maintenance of sports facilities in the city – particularly in relation to the playing of cricket and the wider implications for sport at a time when it is Scottish Government policy to encourage exercise across all age groups and sexes to have a healthier and fitter Scotland with hopefully consequential savings for the NHS.
This is also against a background where the proportion of the City of Edinburgh Council budget spent on supporting sport/sporting facilities per person is believed to be one of the smallest in Scotland which is a clear concern given the size and diversity of those playing sport in the city – not just cricket.
The consequences of this proposal will be that Edinburgh Leisure will be left with two choices – one is to raise prices to cover the costs. For the cricketing community this would mean a rise in charges which might force some smaller clubs to fold and for those clubs operating in Parks with junior sections to find it more difficult to run those sections where costs may reduce their ability to provide games and coaching and those who want to play may not be able to afford it.
The other option is around Edinburgh Leisure cutting the use of facilities. Cricket in various different forms – junior, social and competitive has grown in recent years and if facilities are lost then the consequence is that some clubs and players may drift away from the game (and physical activity) because there are not ample or adequate facilities available to play the game at an affordable cost.
I would acknowledge that clearly the current position cannot continue but rather than just imposing the proposal suggested I would encourage the Council, Edinburgh Leisure and those representing the cricketing community – the East of Scotland Cricket Association and Edinburgh Public Parks Association amongst others to get together to discuss options that would enable cricket to continue to be played in local parks and other Council facilities with a view to promoting participation and progression for all who want to play irrespective of age, sex or ability and enjoy the game at whatever level that might be.”