10:32AM, Tuesday 31 July 2012
Exploding cafe culture has turned Windsor's historic town centre into a 'holiday resort', a life-long resident from the town has claimed.
Derek Prime aired his views to members of the Windsor Town Forum at the Guildhall in High Street last night.
A passionate debate ensued after an agenda item about the licencing of the use of pavements for trading activities including business and cafe encroachment was raised.
Impassioned Mr Prime, of St Leonard's Road, a former retail manager who has lived in the town all his life, said it was not a 'good change'.
The 68-year-old said: "The town has turned into what you would call a 'Southend-on-Sea front' and it is not the town I was born into."
"The town has been turned into a holiday resort and not the sort of thing one would expect in the Royal Borough," he added.
But Cllr George Bathurst (Con, Castle Without) hit back and said he 'fundamentally disagreed' and cafe culture has greatly improved Windsor.
He said: "The cafe culture has brought in extra revenue for shops who are struggling to survive such as explosion of life at the bottom of Peascod Street."
Cllr Tom Bursnall (UKIP, Clewer East) echoed his views and pointed to Barcelona and Madrid's cafe culture - which he said 'works'.
"It makes the whole place more vibrant and they maintain business alone - I welcome the explosion of cafe culture," he added.
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