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DACORUM SPORT STRATEGY SUFFERS A FALSE START

June 21, 2018 10:19 PM
Sports signage in HemelSPORT STRATEGY SUFFERS A FALSE START - BUT THE ATHLETICS TRACK EVENT HAS ALREADY STARTED!
DBC's long overdue Sports and Activity has failed to satisfy scrutineers and has been sent back to the starting-line for a re-write. Meanwhile the council is going ahead with yet ANOTHER major Sports infrastructure decision - with NO SPORTS STRATEGY.
On Wednesday night at Scrutiny the draft was rejected and severely criticised by Liberal Democrat Cllrs Adrian England and Lara Pringle, as well as some Conservative Cllrs. Cllr England said:
"What's missing? It lacks at least 5 things that anything worthy of being called a Strategy should have - Big Picture, headline data, Ownership, headline resources and a timescale."
The Committee agreed that the strategy document should be re-written and brought back to Scrutiny for appraisal.
Now DBC has ignored the Committee - which Cllr Neil Harden attended - and launched another Consultation on the relocation of the Jarman Park Athletics track; BEFORE its strategic approach to Sport in Dacorum has even been thought-through!
STYLE BUT NO SUBSTANCE
The glossy coffee-table "brochure" disguised superficial content, which many consultees criticised, during the online consultation, which was soft pedalled by DBC but still attracted some sharp and detailed responses. The Committee asked Officers to study these and create something that would set out an exciting, ambitious and achievable improvement in Dacorum people's lives.
Cllr Harden confirmed there was no money for the strategy, but it was noted that SLM (Everyone Active) is paying millions in fees to DBC.
Although Cllrs noted that there was a grassroots theme continuation of "Get Set Go" from 2017, this was a fig leaf to spare Cllr Harden's blushes in having pushed through the biggest strategic Sports decision possible - the Leisure Management being taken away from Sportspace, in April.
The Strategy is expected to be rewritten and brought back to the Scrutiny Committee in the Autumn - by which time the Athletics Track will have been progressed while the Strategic thinking is left on the blocks. What a way to run a borough!