A CALL has been made for more money to be invested in Coate Water to take full advantage of a key Swindon asset.
Councillor Derique Montaut (Lab, Liden, Eldene and Park South) has said over the past decade that the reservoir and park have fallen behind places like Lydiard Park in terms of overall investment.
Council leaders have said they will consider the suggestion and that they want to invest in Coate Water.
Coun Montaut, above, suggests possible options for the park which would help bring it up to the standard of the others.
He said: “In Swindon we have four country parks but Lydiard Park takes the bulk of the money. The only real money spent at Coate Water was in 2003 to build a children’s splash pool.
“We are simply not making the most of the park. It is one of the most historic places in the town and I really think we should be doing more with it. I am not calling for the commercialisation of the park but an education centre could make a big difference so we can engage young people and get them interested in the town’s history and heritage.”
He wants to see Section 106 money coming from the Commonhead housing development to be spent on the park, and if necessary an application for National Lottery funding.
Coun Montaut wants the council to ensure that all available cash. is used to improve the park.
“The funds used on the park do not have to come from the public purse,” he said.
“I have picked up that there is £1m of Section 106 money allocated for Coate Water and leisure with the Commonhead development.
“I want to see that money into the park. I do not want to see it go to waste by not being spent in time and therefore lost, as we have seen elsewhere.
“But we can also look into the possibility of a National Lottery grant.”
Council Leader David Renard (Con, Haydon Wick) said he wanted to invest in Coate Water, and welcomed any suggestions for the park.
He said: “We want to invest in Coate Water, and the Commonhead development will be making a contribution so we can do that. Coate Water is a great asset to the town and we want to improve it, so any opportunity to do so will be welcome.”
Coun Montaut has said he intends to move a motion to seek commitment on this issue at the next council meeting on April 3.