OBSERVER: Praise for Blackfriars...but could we do more?

COUN Mike Gilbert brought justifiable praise to Blackfriars in his letter last week. Over the years the arts centre has brought many varied and entertaining acts to the town, but the one big drawback is the limited space it has for an audience.

Coun Gilbert rightly comments that the entertainment provided is first class; however this lack of space obviously means that top shows cannot be attracted to the town. Many older readers will remember the time when the town could support three cinemas, all having dressing room accommodation, and the varied shows and pantomimes that were performed.

I’m of an age when I can (just) remember some of the shows put on at the Odeon towards the end of the war, raising money for various charities and bringing to the town some really top names.

One I can remember most vividly featured Ted Wells, a singer accompanied by his wife Barbara at the piano, and introducing his – at that time – very young step-daughter Julie Andrews (wonder what happened to her?).

The big problem with Boston is that now we have no big venues similar to the Gliderdrome in its heyday to produce top class shows. My family and I often travel to Skegness, Lincoln and King’s Lynn to see these types of show precisely because there is nowhere else locally we can go.

It’s a pity we can’t emulate King’s Lynn’s Corn Exchange; a venue which has shows almost every day of the week – usually of a very high standard and catering to all tastes – and supported in no small way by the nearby Arts Centre. Unfortunately, there are no similar types of buildings in Boston which can be adapted to this type of venue.

l Following on last week from my comment about there being nowhere for the market while the May Fair is here, I’ve heard the suggestion that perhaps the council could consider their own car park for the three days. After all, they may make more money from the market stalls than they do from car parking on the Saturdays, and surely staff can give it up for one day on the Wednesday?

After all, we keep being told how much car parking space there is elsewhere!