Mayor is quizzed over park closure

Mansfield Executive Mayor Tony Egginton, left, addresses a meeting of residents from around the Delamere Drive playing fields over the use of the facility by Mansfield Town.
Mansfield Executive Mayor Tony Egginton, left, addresses a meeting of residents from around the Delamere Drive playing fields over the use of the facility by Mansfield Town.
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FURIOUS residents confronted Mansfield’s mayor at a hastily-arranged meeting over the closure of a section of Forest Road Park.

Around 20 people met with Tony Eggington to quiz him about the controversial padlocking of the gates to what is known locally as Spider Park, to allow Mansfield Town Football Club to train.

The move has angered many who say there was no prior warning, while questioning Mr Egginton’s right to agree to a deal with the football club.

Gathering at a room at Mansfield Sands Co Ltd off Sandhurst Road, Mr Egginton told them the park was owned by the council and was not a public space, and was also used, under licence, by Pleasley Cricket Club.

But he was then bombarded with questions over his conduct with some claiming he had not consulted Mansfield District Council about the move.

One said: “It’s an abuse of position- take the fences down and give us access, otherwise you’ve got a fight on your hands.”

The hour-long meeting ended with Mr Eggington agreeing to look into unlocking the gates, and to a further meeting with residents at Mansfield District’s Council’s Civic Centre on Chesterfield Road this Saturday, 14th July at 10am. Meanwhile, the gates have remained locked.

Mr Eggington predicts it would be another six months before Mansfield Town’s new training facility at the One Call Stadium would be complete, but said the club had agreed to make good any damage done to the park.