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Opinion : Why does Wycombe have so many tramps?

| May 20, 2014


There is nothing I like more than my regular lunchtime walk around Wycombe town centre.

When it’s time for lunch I’m out the door like a flash and making my way to bench somewhere quiet to eat my sandwiches.

Of course on the way yours truly says hello to the regular faces who have come to know me in the town centre. Taxi drivers on the rank in the High Street wave their hands as my good self passes by, shops assistants nod as I walk past and look in through the shop windows. Traders on the market even say hello if I glance at the produce for sale on their stalls.

There are other familiar faces whom, while unknown to me personally, are always in the town centre. For example other workers on their way to or from lunch and street cleaners emptying the litter bins in the town centre. Then of course there are the tramps sitting on the pavement asking for money.

In my opinion Wycombe has more than its fair share of ‘gentlemen of the road’ hanging around in the town centre. When I think about it on my trips to other nearby towns I can’t seem to remember seeing a single beggar, busker or tramp.

Where in Marlow are you are likely to find someone sitting on the pavement waiting to sell you a copy of the Big Issue? There aren’t many buskers ready to knock out a quick tune on a harmonica in Beaconsfield. In Princes Risborough the cardboard boxes beside the road are ready for the dustmen to take away and not providing bedding for someone down on their luck.

In Wycombe there seem to be various points frequents by the unfortunates such as outside the chemists in the High Street, in the service road linking the High Street to the Theatre and at the end of White Hart Street near the new shopping complex.

Only the other day yours truly happened to walk past the end of White Hart Street and to my amazement there wasn’t a tramp sitting there. Of course he wasn’t far away, indeed he was having a shave with what appeared to be a battery operated razor using the window of the unlit former Robert Dyas shop as a mirror in which to see.

It’s about time something was done to solve the problem of the down and outs hanging around Wycombe town centre. It’s all very well providing food for those who can’t feed themselves but Wycombe has become a magnet for tramps, dossers and undesirables in the process.

How can we expect businessmen to open high class shops if on their first day of opening a gentleman of the road decides to use the freshly installed plate glass window as a shaving mirror?

Wycombe’s compassion towards those down on their luck is great indeed we have extended a welcome to those in need but we have to ask the question is our town being taken advantage of?

Maybe the policy of welcoming all with open arms needs to be reassessed? Other towns don’t seem to be a magnet for the homeless like Wycombe so why can’t we be more like them?

What do you think?

*Don’t forget my blogs are published here on WycombeToday.com twice a week every Tuesday and Friday evenings around 8pm.

*If you should see me walking around the town centre at lunchtimes why not come up and say hello? I’m very friendly and always happy to hear from my readers!

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