Council leader defends £1m investment for splash park in Hemel Hempstead

The splash park would provide enjoyment for families according to Andrew Williams

The splash park would provide enjoyment for families according to Andrew Williams

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A £1million investment in a new splash park has been defended by Dacorum Borough Council leader Andrew Williams.

The splash park is set to be built next to the current bowls greens in Gadebridge Park with a scheduled opening date of Spring next year.

And while the news went down a storm with parents, a spokesman for the Labour party in Hemel Hempstead called the splash park plans ‘blatant electioneering’.

The group also tweeted the Gazette’s story with the caption: “Anyone would think there’s an election coming for councillors who have made an a**e of the hospital.”

The spokesman added: “Why has money become available now when three years ago they said a £300,000 price tag was unaffordable and we are now facing rises in council tax?”

But Cllr Williams responded to the questions from Labour by saying that the funds had been carried through from last year’s budget and had been funded through capital funding rather than council tax.

Mr Williams also addressed the price increase, quoted as £300,000 in 2014, now up to £1million, and why the council isn’t responsible for hospital funding.

He said: “Back in 2014 we were looking at a basic splash park, this is for a bigger and better facility which also includes new toilets, a kiosk and a coffee shop.

“A hospital is not something that a council funds, and in the scheme of things, £1million would run a hospital for half a day.

“Life is about having a range of facilities, and this will bring enjoyment to families.”