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LETTERS: Council must respect ‘gentleman’s agreement’ on passive park

Editor:

Re: A ‘terrible offence’ to Maccaud’s memory: Coyne, March 25

I read with great concern the article about putting pickleball courts on Maccaud Park with a vote of 6 to 1 in favour and only one councillor, Christopher Trevelyan, voting against the motion. Good for him!

The whole concept flies in the face of this new council’s campaign commitment to operate with integrity.

To be fair, it’s not clear in the PAN article that the council was aware of the ‘gentlemen’s agreement’ to keep the park as a passive green space when the vote was taken. I’d hope that if they knew they would have voted otherwise.

By saying it’s not in the written agreement and therefore by implication it doesn’t exist and doesn’t have to be adhered to, council has taken the position of following the letter-of-the-law, not the intention of the agreement. Taking this position clearly contradicts what we know Mrs. Maccaud believed to be the agreement.

We know she was a passionate environmentalist and demonstrated this by the several actions she took to preserve the natural environment. One of them being Maccaud Park, White Rock.

Her statement, combined with the existing knowledge of the ‘gentlemen’s agreement’ of a handshake, cannot be refuted and goes beyond the letter-of-the-law. Council cannot ignore the conditions and intention of the property sale to White Rock City was, and is, that the park be preserved as a natural green space in perpetuity.

Before we lose the living memory of the gentlemen’s agreement, while the written and unwritten facts are known, if council is to act with integrity what behooves them is to pass an addendum to the original written agreement adding the unwritten gentlemen’s agreement to ensure future councils do not again attempt to change the status of Maccaud Park.

Christine Bennet-Clark, White Rock

Letter to the Editor