WELL – what a surprise – the grandiose/grandstanding Gateway Project involving spending £7.8m has been “scaled back”.

According to reports in the Craven Herald of November 30, North Yorkshire Council are “almost ready to submit the final business case for the scheme”. I had assumed that since the project was about to start, this would already have been done/approved.

I have thought since the scheme was first announced years ago that this was an unconscionable waste of money which would have been far better spent building some affordable/rentable housing for local families desperate for a roof over their heads.

The idea of spending this amount on realigning a few kerbstones, laying a few new paving stones and installing a few pretty planters, plus altering the perfectly adequate footpaths on both sides of Broughton Road seemed ridiculous.

I note that improvements on “walking routes” (footpaths?) are to go ahead. I seem to remember that in the 1950s when I played in Aireville Park, the paths from the canal to Aireville Hall were quite adequate – difficult to see how spending vast sums on them will improve them unless lighting is involved.

Totally unconnected, I am intrigued by the article regarding the change from the former pie and mash shop on Coach Street into a “high end venue”.

Does this mean that only tall people will be using it. I see also that it will not be a “vertical drinking establishment”. Again, does this mean that everyone will have consumed so much booze that they will all be prostrate on the floor?

I think I’m getting too old for all this – pass the Grouse!

Julian Hide