RESIDENTS are battling to get a multi-use games area created in the Marsden Ward area of Nelson - and the fight has been going on for years.
And there is also a call to make other MUGAs safer by raising the height of fences round them.
Both issues came up at this week’s meeting of Pendle Council’s Nelson Committee.
There is a petition for the MUGA to be created at the far end of Marsden Hall Road North, next to the Marsden Community Centre. But a report to the committee suggested it was not possible to do that. The land is now owned by Housing Pendle not the council.
But there is still hope that it will happen. Mr Azhar Ali raised the issue with the councillors at the meeting. He called for somewhere for people to play and felt that land could be used.
Labour Party member Coun. Richard Smith said: “This report is clearly not right.” And Conservative Coun. Tommy Cooney was pleased with the response from Labour councillors. “It’s long overdue,” he said.
Coun. David Whalley added: “I think it’s a great idea.” And Coun. Eileen Ansar made it clear the proposal for a MUGA in Marsden Ward first arose in 2004. So she said: “I’m not prepared for this to be delayed year after year. What I would like to do is for it to be reported next month and go for cash approval of £38,000. I want to get it built and up and running before April next year.”
So members entirely agreed to have a new report at the next meeting and come up with funding to get the MUGA operational.
Coun. Whalley also raised the fears about the danger by MUGAs elsewhere. Houses next to one on Bradshaw Street have been hit by balls coming off it, while on Netherfield Road, a passer-by had been hit by a ball and was injured. There are plans to spend £4,000 on fence improvements at Netherfield but it would cost another £2,330 to improve Bradshaw Street.
Coun. Whalley told the committee: “We have a genuine comment of complaint from a member of the public who was injured. I honestly can’t see why higher fencing can’t be put together.”
In terms of Bradley, it was suggested it could be looked at in next year’s budget.