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Council under fire over grant for tourist base
9:00am Saturday 16th February 2013 in News
THE owners of a recently closed tourist information centre in Stow have hit out at the town council for the way it has worked to set up a replacement service.
Sue and Walter Hasler closed the privately-run Go-Stow in December after Stow Town Council (STC) refused to continue to fund them despite a 1,600 signature petition to save the service.
Meanwhile, the owners of the town’s cricket museum Andy and Marian Collier have since proposed opening a new information point for tourists at their premises on Sheep Street.
In a letter to the town council, Mr and Mrs Hasler said they supported the cricket museum’s bid but were unhappy that the town council had offered to help them with a £10,000 grant.
Although the grant was made by Cotswold District Council to run visitor services in the town, Stow Town Council refused to give it to Go-Stow as it was unable to directly fund a private business.
“We want to make it clear that we like the Colliers a lot and wish them well for the future, but we want explanations from STC,” the letter read.
“Why, within 48 hours of them expressing interest in running the VIC (visitor information centre), were they given a copy of the contract and told that they would receive money to help them?”
Mr and Mrs Hasler added in the letter that they felt it was unfair that STC was supporting the cricket museum, which has been open for less than a year.
“Why is STC’s treatment of the Colliers, who are relatively new to Stow, so vastly different from the way we have been treated, after three years of running Go-Stow as a highly successful VIC?”