Controversy Over TIC Relocation Continues

tourist info schiller shelterThe controversy over the re-siting of the tourist information centre to the new Schiller Shelter at Porthcressa continues as one councillor is claiming the move was illegal.

Cllr Gordon Bilsborough says that the Council didn’t follow correct procedure in moving the centre from the Steamship Company office without consulting the public.

The planned move was first shared with members at a Policy and Resources meeting in February, when the late Council Chairman, Mike Hicks, said that the public must be asked for views over the site switch.

Mike said he wanted to show the community that councillors, “do care and do listen,” and added that he didn’t want this to, “develop into another source of aggravation for the Council.”

Gordon says that consultation didn’t happen and that’s not right.

But Chief Planner Craig Dryden says the P&R Committee agreed in principle at the February meeting to the relocate the TIC. He says various organisations were consulted, including the Islands’ Partnership and the Steamship Company, as well as local businesses and users, staff and visitors to the TIC.

Cllr Gordon Bilsborough

Cllr Gordon Bilsborough

The ending of the lease at the Steamship Offices provided the opportunity to consider alternative premises with a view to making cost savings, says Craig, and feedback received has been generally positive.

Gordon is also concerned that the shelter is locked when the TIC closes in the evening at 5pm and he wants it open longer, so people can take their fish and chips there and enjoy the view.

Craig says having the TIC Staff present helps keep the building safe and secure by deterring vandalism, which has been a problem previously. And he says a sign identifying the building will be placed there soon.

The campaign to have it moved from the new beachfront location is gaining momentum. Former councillor Sheila Thomas says she’s launching a petition next week to encourage the Council to move the centre into the Town Hall reception area.



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