Keep Louth Special group blasted

Tuesday 11am - TOWN councillor and taxi driver Coun John Gains has blasted Keep Louth Special - the pressure group that wants to safeguard the Cattle Market site from a supermarket development.

At last week's town council meeting, Coun Gains claimed the group was made up of 'outsiders' who had no understanding of what Louth people wanted.

He urged: "If they want to live in a museum town, they should move 186 miles north to Beamish."

Also critical was Coun Brian Burnett. Although acknowledging the group had 'some good ideas', he accused its membership of wanting to 'preserve Louth in aspic'.

He said: "There's too much 1990s thinking - they should recognise the retail world has moved on It's not supermarkets that pose a threat to Louth's small traders - it's the internet."

Coun Burnett said the group should become more forward thinking and change its name to Make Louth Special.

Coun Margaret Ottaway suggested some of those in Keep Louth Special and other pressure groups should stand for election to the town council or East Lindsey District Council if they felt sufficiently strongly.

She said: "It's up to them to put their heads over the parapet.".

However, Coun Jill Makinson-Sanders praised the group for raising the profile both of the future of the Cattle Market and of the town overall.

She said: "At the very least, Keep Louth Special is keeping East Lindsey District Council on its toes."

Present as an observer at the meeting was Nick Louth, a founder-member of the group and author of a report with a raft of proposals for making the town more vibrant both for residents and visitors.

Afterwards he said: "Far from opposing change, we welcome it - but in a way that goes with the grain of the town's 1,000 year heritage of local enterprise, not against it.

"We want to encourage local food shops and market traders to reach new customers by a range of means - for instance the Internet, home deliveries and a late closing evening.

"With a positive approach - and imagination - there are countless opportunities to ensure a bright and properous future for Louth."

* What do you think to the Keep Louth Special group? Text your views to 81800. Start your message with LLNEWS followed by your message - and please include your name and address. Calls cost 25p plus the standard network charge.