Proms could have been linked already

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The comments by Steve Lowe (News Guardian, February 26) on Gary Legg’s letter of the previous week should not pass without some balancing redress.

There is an undoubted dream by local people that the two promenades at Whitley Bay will be linked one day. The benefits to the community of such an improvement of a local facility goes without saying.

In the short term, the section that would extend northwards to the cliff top car park will become increasingly necessary, which was the point made by Gary Legg.

Otherwise cliff erosion will see sections of the car park lost and more of it cordoned off with unsightly barriers.

A promenade would not only prevent that but would permit an access for disabled people to the existing promenade that is not possible at present from that car park.

I hasten to add that any works to save the car park should avoid a repetition of the recent hideous sea wall at the north end of the beach.

It is ugly, it has no affinity with the adjacent promenade to the lighthouse and is an apparent clarification that the Council do not share the dream of linked promenades. It is embarrassingly bad.

Mr Lowe gives the impression that environmental regulations would prevent further sea wall works, but that is not so.

The Shoreline Management Strategy that he refers to indicates that the existing sea walls (promenades) should be maintained and the gap should be subject to ‘Allowing realignment of the shoreline, with management to control or limit movement’.

That can mean any number of things including building a linking sea wall/promenade. Moreover, it is an indication that we cannot simply sit and watch land be washed into the sea as he implies. If money had been forthcoming, the promenades would have been linked together many years ago.

I would ask that our council recognise that there is a dream that the gap in the promenades should be filled in, even with due regard to the cost implications, and that they should avoid measures that kill off that dream.

Gordon Philpott

Address supplied