Power of song - and a touch of Madness - could save community pond

Pop veterans Madness have given the song their blessing. Credit: PA

People living in Louth hope the power of song, and a touch of Madness, could help save a beloved fishing pond for future generations.

For the past year Charles Street Pond has been fenced off after plans for East Lindsey District Council to pass it on to Louth Town Council were shelved.

Instead the authority says it is hoping to lease the land to a fishing group.

But campaigners feel its future is still uncertain. So a local singing group came up with the idea of a song, taking inspiration from the Madness classic 'Our House' and adapting the lyrics.

Now their version, entitled 'Our Pond', has been recorded - complete with music video.

And, what's more, pop veterans Madness have given the song their blessing.

Campaign leader Lynne Cooney said she hopes the combination of community spirit and a touch of Madness will secure the pond's future.

She said: "We kind of decided that we wanted to bring it to the public’s attention, which is why Tamsin [Hunkin] and I got together with a few other people and said, ‘Let’s make a video’.

"Tamsin did all the words, so they are her words, and what’s super cool is that she wrote to the Madness management and asked if we could use their music.

"When they realised what we were all going to do they came back and said, ‘Absolutely. You’ve got our blessing. Run with it’."

And that's why old and young came together at Charles Street Recreation Ground to have a bash at singing the song - and to record a promo video that borrows from the unique Madness dance style.

One woman commented: "I was born here in 1955. This was my late uncle’s favourite fishing spot."

Another local, much younger in years but equally passionate, said: "It deserves to be open. It’s here for a reason, and it’s been open for decades and decades."

Lynne said the group "had a good giggle" practicing for the video and that it "really brought the community together – there were lots of the community groups and clubs there and it really showed the humanity of the town."

She added that campaigners would "reserve judgment until the paperwork is signed and sealed".

"The community are, as a whole, very passionate about this area and really want it looked after. So if it’s under threat we need to protect it."

Cllr Richard Fry, East Lindsey Council's portfolio holder for finance including property, said it wished to explore the opportunity of leasing the Charles Street Fishing Pond to organisations, constituted groups or fishing clubs to run and maintain.

He added: "“Any successful applicant will be required to maintain the pond both now and, in the future, ensuring the facility is safe to operate and have the necessary public liability insurances in place to support recreational fishing activities.

"Ideally, the successful applicant through their tender submission, will be able to detail plans for regular maintenance and enhancement of the facility for the duration of the lease."

Louth mayor and chairman of Louth Town Council, Julia Simmons, said she was backing the campaign group and that re-opening the pond in a partnership with a local fishing group seemed to be "the best way forward".

Want a quick and expert briefing on the biggest news stories? Listen to our latest podcasts to find out What You Need To Know.