Yesterday as I was perusing twitter – engaging in light chit chat, doing the general rounds and seeing how everybody was so on and so forth, one tweet in particular from a certain @DulwichMum caught my eye immediately. I could almost envisage her booming out loud as I read on;
“They have lost the damn plot entırely all chıldren should have access to the parks. HOW DARE THEY!” she certainly appeared to have a bee in her bonnet, and once I enquired further and grasped a better understanding of the situation – I had a hive full in mine.
The Tories are up to their old tricks again, Thatcher holds the crown for snatching children’s free milk, and the Tory council of Bexley appear to be following suit with their current plans to snatch children’s free play. Bexley Council is planning to charge parents at least £1 for their children to use the Belvedere Splash Park in Bexley. Apparently In 2007 the council tried to introduce similar plans for a charge for residents to use the splash park but the proposal was fiercely defeated after a public outcry, rightly so if you ask me. Baring in mind that 4 in 10 London children live in poverty plans such as these are doing nothing to discourage or eradicate it.
Since the Coalition Government came into power, we’ve sat back and watched them repeatedly target Children (scrapping the Child Trust Fund, capping Child benefits etc.) but this is definitely not an action that they can justify in the name of “Austerity cuts” or “reducing the deficit”. I understand that there have been drastic cuts across many local councils, but this proposed measure truly strikes me as absurd.
Some may argue that it’s just a pound, and views such as mine are much ado about nothing. Nonetheless it all comes down to the fact that it’s about the principle of the matter. The Principle of the matter being that there should be no price put on children’s play, health and development, under any circumstances. These things are priceless and should be kept as such.
Considering that the UK has the highest obesity rate in the whole of Europe. We should be encouraging children to go out and play, not putting a price on it. Clearly (according to this Tory Borough at least) – being a child is a luxury that they can no longer afford, literally.