Leisure and places to go: what you told us

People thought that leisure facilities needed improvement for people with disabilities (67% majority said needed improvement), for teenagers (63%) and for young adults (54%).

Facilities for pre-school children and primary age children were thought to be satisfactory (40% and 38% majority in favour of satisfaction) as were facilities for people of working age (27%). There was less consensus about facilities for older people (16% majority towards satisfactory).

There was very strong support for developing better facilities at Jubilee Park (67% majority supporting) and as this question was answered by all but nine people this is a strong vote of confidence.

There was very slightly more opposition to the proposal invest time, money and energy in developing a modern, multi-use community building in Jubilee Parkthe majority in favour of 56% is still very large.

People were asked for suggestions about other specific things that needed to be done to improve leisure, sports and cultural facilities. 58% of people answered this question.

The most common suggestions were about the need for a swimming pool (40 mentions), a sports/leisure centre (30) or sharing with schools (30). There was a lot of overlap between these suggestions: people commonly suggested that a school should share its pool or sport facilities with the town, and there were also some more general comments about the schools opening their facilities to others.

The next most common suggestions were about a community hall/centre (23) and updating Jubilee Park (22).

People were asked what needed to be done (if anything) to help people enjoy the surrounding countryside. 54% responded.

By far the commonest response was the need for good and well-signed paths and cycle routes, with maps to assist. 69% of all the suggestions made fell within one or more of these categories.

Walks needed to be mapped and publicised (62 mentions), stiles and footpaths maintained (55) and signs needed to be improved (53).

We asked for suggestions about how the County Fields might be used should the Council take on its lease. 55% of people answered.

Most of those answering (59%) envisaged it being used as an open space for the community:

  • 36 people mentioned either it being left untouched as fields or developed as a woodland;
  • 34 mentioned the need for a path, usually connecting the East of the town with its centre;
  • 20 mentioned sports.

The closure of the public toilets (by South Somerset DC, not the Town Council) was mentioned several times at the Packhorse Fair, so we asked a question about whether the existing community toilet scheme was adequate or whether more needed to be done.

46% of those answering thought that the existing community toilet scheme would be adequate, but only if it received better publicity. The next most common vote was for the town council investigating the possibility of opening and funding public toilets (30%).

We also asked about the extent of support for public events such as the Packhorse Fair, offering a range of statements to agree with. There was very strong support:

  • 59% of people thought that “they are great and we need more of this kind of thing”;
  • 35% think that “they are good, but what happens now is enough”;
  • 3% were neither for nor against, and 1% thought that “these kinds of events are of no benefit to the town.


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