I wonder why there are always kids camped out at the bottom end of Sainsbury’s car park, smoking cigarettes their older siblings went into the shop to get them, drinking energy drinks, screwing around on their skateboards and BMXs. Don’t they have anyone else to do?
Then I remember, only 10 years ago I was doing the same thing. In fact, a Sainsbury’s employee once drove me home when I sprained my wrist from failing to land a kickflip and tripping face-first into the tarmac floor. But it just goes to show, that not even in the space of a decade Dronfield Town Council have bothered to lend agency to anyone under the age of 18.
Dronfield Town Council are a particularly toxic brand of self-serving fuddy-duddies, reserving displays of token empathy for cherry-picked charities and bake sales. To call them out-of-touch would imply they were once capable of feeling, which based on their decade of impotence is something I do not believe they were ever capable of, or wanted to be.
Their ignorance should not be looked at as anything but an outright abuse of their elected positions. But they don’t want to care, after all, young people don’t have the vote and by the time they do, they’ve left Dronfield for new pastures only to return 10 years later and vote Conservative at the local elections. Repeating the cycle.
Dronfield Town Council would make Operation Yewtree blush with the wealth of historic child abuse cases on their rap sheet. However, you only need to look over the last couple of years for some prime examples of civic retardation:
Remember the BMX track that became Dronfield Nature Park?
Cast your memories back a few years ago and you will remember such a thing as the Dronfield BMX track, a remarkable example of young people with spades and enthusiasm turning a piece of dirt wasteland into a BMX track complete with several jumps. Well, it was flattened at the request of the Town Council to become Dronfield Nature Park. Quite an ugly vista, with no utility to anyone outside of dog walkers and fly-tippers.
Remember the ever-in-planning-never-to-happen skatepark?
A couple of years ago I met with Natascha Engel MP to discuss the formation of this website but, given my age, the conversation moved to the poor treatment of young people in Dronfield by the town council. She told me the only people blocking the skate park were the Town Council, who were concerned it might gather too many noise complaints and drug users. Apparently, it was consensus that skateboards and BMXs are a gateway into herion abuse. The lack of track-marks on my limbs might suggest otherwise.
Remember the Open-air Cinema?
A schoolgirl from Dronfield had the idea for an open-air cinema, to bring the community together by introducing an annual event which could be enjoyed by all, especially young people. She got the greenlight from Natascha Engel MP, Teresa Roche the Headteacher of Dronfield Henry Fanshawe School, the Scouting Association and several other Dronfield town groups. She received funding from a creative agency. She had put the legwork in to make the event a success, spending weeks to go through the correct channels and procedures to make the event happen. She was blocked by the Town Council, identifying “age and experience of organisers” as a reason. I asked her what she thought Dronfield was like for young people, she said: “suburban hell”.
I implore you all to contact the Dronfield Town Council, asking them what their policy on young people is. Ask them what they have done in the last 10 years for young people. Ask them what they intend to do to help young people in the next 10 years.