Petitions in need of more questions

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Recent correspondence over changes and petitions has made me wonder if we are in danger of becoming a knee-jerk town where every mooted change is immediately followed by a petition.

Everyone has a right to an opinion and petitions can give a feeling, but let us consider what they actually mean in three examples.

1. The proposed demolition of the Boardwalk Cafe: if 800 people, say, (and that is a very small proportion of the population) think it is a bad idea, the real question is ‘How often do you use it?’. I have been twice in umpteen years with no intention of returning but can appreciate its appeal to some. As to the view, well beauty is in the eye of the beholder and either way the view is good. Whether that changes will not bother visitors or most locals.

2. The changes to the promenade: some old creations are not worth keeping just because they are old. But there does need to be an enhancement to the areas as at present they are an ugly deterrent.

3. The open-air swimming pool: if it ends up covered and heated then fine ... although it would be competing with Waves. As a youth I was made to brave the icy waters there and I have no nostalgia for the place, but any petition needs to be sure of the answers to one fundamental question: Will you actually use it and if so how often?

Yes, petitions are useful, but follow-up questions need to be sure of genuine intentions as opposed to vague aspirations.

Whilst some of your letters are often ‘political’ with a kick aimed at whichever party is control of the council at the time, credit should be given where due.

The area from the old library down to the seafront through the children’s play park is excellent and the way forward for enhancing our coastline.

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