Sunderland Illuminations entry charge sparks Facebook fallout

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Have your say

Echo readers have taken on the critics after council chiefs defended their decision to charge £1 entry for Roker Park during Sunderland Illuminations.

The lights officially open tonight with a special launch event on the seafront at 8pm.

Fulwell resident Alan Vickers, 82, was among those angry at the council for announcing an entry charge to the park, a place which had been gifted to the people of Sunderland, during the Illuminations.

Some agreed, but many didn't - and more than 200 people let their feelings known on our Facebook page. Here is a flavour of what you had to say:

Dan Love said: "Complaining over £1???? A childs smile = PRICELESS!!!!"

Lynne MacDonald said: "£1 isn't very much now is it? and the reasons for charging more than justify the means. Or maybe we should all be charged a bit extra council tax. It's got to come from somewhere."

Ruth Chantel Simpson said: "The lights are on for about 6 weeks, I sure as hell wouldn't like the electric bill lol. £1 each is nothing to see the smiles on my children's face and the excitement of doing something different."

Tracy Oliver said: "I won't mind paying £1 entrance fee ... you can see where the money is going I think it's well worth it x"

Tina Owens said: "£4.00 for a nite of entertainment for a family of 4. really, what is there to complain about!?! I might pay £2 just as a token of appreciation."

Leigh Green said: "The majority of the residents in this city would twist on 21. No wonder the city lags behind many others, the residents are as guilty as the council for any lack of progression."

Micky Heskett said: "I ran around the park today and have to say it's impressive it's much better than last year and kids will love it: dinosaurs, aliens etc etc looks great worth a quid all day long if u don't want to pay it don't go it's as simple as that xx"

Robin Edwards said: "You want to be lucky they dont charge you for the air display like the rest of the countty does there s few ungratful people out there."

Darren Glendenning: said: "£1 this year, £2 next year, next thing you know it will be up to a tenner."

John Shawcross said: "I agree the charge is a small price to pay but bottom line is it's public land, it's like charging people to walk on a public footpath. That said and to be fair to the council I'm pretty sure that they pay for the upkeep of the park all year round so a quid is coppers when you look at the big picture. I'll be visiting."

Josephine Pae said: "Right I am sick to the back teeth of everyone moaning about the lights.if you don't agree with the pound entry don't bloody go.simple.let the people who want to pay enjoy it.if you want the lights to be as good as years ago.pay the pound.i have had a look in the park and it looks amazing.enjoy."

Sylvia Weetman said: "It does not surprise me that the council are charging for the entry to the park to see the lights why stop there they would charge for the air we breath if they could it's a disgrace get a grip it's a free public park."