High Peak MP Ruth George is backing calls for residents to be given a say on the future of the conservatory in Buxton’s Pavilion Gardens.
The MP’s rallying cry comes after gardens’ management company Parkwood Leisure announced plans to ‘scale back’ the planting scheme in favour of a pre-theatre bar area.
Since the plans were unveiled nearly 2,000 people have signed a petition opposing them - including MP Ruth.
However Parkwood Leisure has since announced that ‘proposals have changed’ and the firm was ‘listening to all feedback’.
Ruth said: “Like many local residents my kids and I love the conservatory - especially the fish and we’ve spent many a rain shower happily sheltering there.
“I’ve asked the council how local people can voice their views on Parkwood’s proposals - especially around their plans to uproot the plants in the conservatory to make way for a temporary bar along the length of the opera house wall.
“That’s why I’ve signed the petition set up by a local mum calling on Parkwood to change their plans – and I urge everyone who cares about the conservatory to sign too.
“The Pavilion Gardens and leisure centres are assets for the people of High Peak that we’ve paid for over many years and it’s only right that local people have a say in any changes.”
Ruth said she hoped the council had built public consultations into Parkwood’s contract and ‘looked forward to that confirmation’.
Buxton mum-of-two Maja Kosinska, 41, who created the petition, said she believed the town should be hanging onto the ‘precious’ planted area and making the most of its heritage after the shock news that Marks and Spencer will be closing.
She said: “I moved to Buxton four years ago and fell in love with the town - and the botanical gardens was the main thing for me. It’s stunning heritage and it can take years to grow like that.
“I’m all for improving the Pavilion Gardens but I don’t think this is something we should be reducing - especially with the high street struggling.
“I think this bar will be empty for most of the time but it will be taking up a lot of space.”
Members of the public can sign the petition by visiting bit.ly/2I7WbYR.