Video: Crime, flooding and Gatwick top debate at Crawley Question Time

Crime, flooding, health, potholes and the possible expansion of Gatwick Airport were the hot topics of discussion at Crawley Question Time.

Around 100 people packed into the Civic Hall, in The Boulevard, this evening (Wednesday February 5) and Crawley Borough Council received more than 90 questions from residents in the run-up to the meeting.

Crawley Question Time

Crawley Question Time

Chaired by the mayor Cllr Bob Burgess, the panel of experts answering questions were: Chief Inspector Justina Beeken, of Sussex Police; Dr Amit Bhargava, of the Crawley Clinical Commissioning Group, Cllr Peter Lamb, council leader Cllr Howard Bloom, Cllr Bob Lanzer and Chris Maidement, chair of both Crawley’s Local Economic Action Group and the Corporation of Central Sussex College.

When asked if crime in Crawley was on the rise, Chief Inspector Beeken acknowledged burglary figures had increased but assured those present that crime on the whole had decreased.

On the issue of health, the subject of Leacroft Medical Centre, in Langley Green, was raised.

The building had its roof blown off on December 23 and criticism was aimed at the landlord and insurers for taking so long to address the repair work.

Some 10,000 patients use the centre and members of the public expressed concerns for their health care.

The possibility of expansion at Gatwick split the room, with half welcoming the idea of a second runway and half not wanting it to be built.

The council was accused of “dilly-dallying” over whether or not it agreed with expansion – but Cllr Lanzer reiterated his previous stance that, until the council knows exactly what is being proposed for the airport, it would be wrong to take sides.

On the subject of the economy, Cllr Bloom announced the borough and county councils would each be contributing £1.5m to improve the look of Queens Square in an attempt to attract businesses.

For a full report, see Wednesday’s Crawley Observer.

Were you at the meeting? What did you think? Leave your comments below or email the newsdesk.