Well, Mr Bell, I think we can agree to disagree regarding our views on the PRSA!
One point, though: I am most certainly a Bostonian born and bred, and worked in the town for well over 40 years before my recent retirement, so have no fears about that!
When the sports centre was first mooted, much was made of its principle aim of being as much for the disabled as able-bodied and the fact that this would enable numerous grants to be applied for – there was certainly no misconception on my part that I believed it would be profitable. It was the council of that time who made much of the fact that it would NOT be a burden on the rates.
It was also stipulated that the arena would be known as the Dabsi (Disabled and Able Bodied Sports Initiative) stadium; I believe Finn Forest donated the majority of the wood for the building and asked for some recognition in the title but were told it HAD to be the Dabsi, otherwise there would be no grants. Then on the day it was opened it had suddenly been renamed the Princess Royal Sports Arena.
I still argue there is a ‘commercial business’ there; I have certainly never heard of a business being allowed to provide a service for an ‘agreed deficit payment.’ Surely any enterprise accepting fees for a service is a business?
Although you agree to other sports being helped by the council, you then say this is not possible with the current budget constraints; but you have no problem with the PRSA being treated differently!
I think I speak for many Bostonians when I say the PRSA was a mistake, especially when so much council (ie ratepayers) money is being poured into it.
Incidentally, apologies to Jeff Elms; in my original notes I had actually mentioned the rowing club among other sports at the end of my column but somehow managed to leave them out when typing up; the club should be congratulated in attracting 5,000 visitors a year.
Wish we could say the same for . . . .