How it was: Shelly Bay horseracing. *File photo
How it was: Shelly Bay horseracing. *File photo

Dear Sir,

Casinos may look good if you have tunnel vision, but the truth of the matter is the solution has to involve the people who reside here. 

The casinos will only financially nurture those who invest their dollars in the business and/or at the tables. The vision that I am encouraging us to consider will invigorate the whole community.

More importantly it will be functional all year round and will help to keep and maintain open space for tomorrow’s generations. At the moment there are four sporting activities that can be used in tandem in one location.

That being karting and cycling which are now functioning at Southside, then there is the harness racing which is at Vesey Street. The other sports activity which would bode well with the three listed, would be proper horse-back racing as in the days of Shelly Bay racing.

Combined at the same venue these would provide between approximately 300 to 500 employment opportunities outside of the grandstand and retail boutiques.

That is not including the number of personnel that would be required to provide their services and skill sets within the grandstand, dining areas, restaurants, bakeries, retail stores, and internal framework of this superb edifice.

Externally, after building the needed facilities, a large maintenance crew would need to be a part of the staff. Likewise a security force, perhaps the Bermuda Regiment could attain full-time experience in this aspect. 

Landscapers, gardeners, grounds personnel, groomers, daily work-riders, stable attendants, trainers and their support teams, veterinarians and their staff. 

Jockeys, riders and drivers along with trainees of each discipline. Of course a contingent of fire personnel would also have to be present.

Other support services would include on-site physicians and nurses with ambulance personnel. 

A police unit would have to be stationed at the venue. The public service drivers of buses, taxis, mini-buses and water-taxis would find themselves continually engaged in trade.

The idea is to create both day and night activity in respect to the sports disciplines. The ballroom should be large enough with a relevant size kitchen to comfortably seat and serve 1,000 to 1,500 persons. 

This could also function as a staging place for large corporate meetings from overseas companies. The restaurants, bakeries could become viable options for cruise-ship visitors rather than having them scurring back to their respective ships for lunch or even dinner. 

The goal is to harmonise what we have to offer in order to provide a complete experience for all who attend this park.

Night entertainment provided by locals can flow into the morning as there will be no neighbours to fuss about noise pollution. 

John H. Holdipp III

Pembroke