Council Has Been Working Closely Wtih ADeC

I AM writing in response to a letter published on June 12 from Ted Coney concerning arts and culture provision in East Cambridgeshire. Mr Coney made some very serious claims and I feel it is important to deal with them. He stated that political comments

I AM writing in response to a letter published on June 12 from Ted Coney concerning arts and culture provision in East Cambridgeshire.

Mr Coney made some very serious claims and I feel it is important to deal with them. He stated that political comments were made by officers on the Local Development Framework (LDF) Market Stall in Ely. This was simply not the case. Officers of the council are impartial, and no officer would give their political opinion in a public forum or public meeting.

The purpose of the market stall was to promote the new LDF; to set a framework for housing, employment and retail growth in the district up to the year 2025, and will seek to facilitate infrastructure and services to support growth. The LDF will allocate some specific sites for new housing and employment development, but does not propose to allocate sites for every type of land-use. The LDF recognises the importance of social and cultural facilities, and such development will be assessed sympathetically on its own merits as it comes forward.

This council has, in recent months, been working closely with ADeC to develop an arts service focusing on grass roots community work. Together we have mapped out the priorities for the district as we work to bring arts and leisure to the wider community - to make a real difference to people's lives. By supporting voluntary groups to engage with both young and old, we can create an arts service that is sustainable and that we can all be proud of.

Councillors have also promised to retain a cinema service at The Maltings following the refit of the building's roof. This is a promise made after they listened to what the residents of the district wanted. But the arts are not just about films - we would like to see more events and entertainment. We believe ADeC can deliver on this as we make plans for the future.

JOHN HILL

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Chief executive, East Cambs District Council.

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