Step out on the Walk of Shame

The Walk of Shame Trail starts just in front of The Spanish City.

It takes you along the derelict sea front to the fishing harbour of Cullercoats.

When your seasonal relatives/ visitors, visit once again and look at the derelict state of the Dome and wonder why the paintwork looks so bad after just a couple of years, just tell them it looks better on the artists impression.

When someone in your party needs to go to the public toilet on Watts slope, remind them, these toilets are going to be remodelled, so don’t concern yourself with cracked tiles, dirty walls, broken windows, and a flaking paintwork ceiling.

Remember this is council property, not privately owned. Health and safety and hygiene doesn’t come into it.

When you move along the seafront, make sure you remind your visitors how lovely the sea looks today and look at the view. Don’t let them look towards the Avenue, again, Whisky Bends again, and the terrible mess of the High Point.

Again, quickly divert them, because you know they will say, I thought the council were putting the heart back into Whitley Bay after stealing its soul.

Remember resident, none of this is your fault.

Don’t feel shame, disappointment, guilt, despair, apathy, sadness, anger, even depression, all the emotions that come when you remind yourself you are another year older and maybe you will never see Whitley Bay as it used to be before this council once again started a job they can’t finish.

And no, please don’t start with the iconic headland of the lighthouse, building another cafe.

The hot dog stand and the ice cream van have been there for years and are sufficient for our needs, a cafe would be a total blight on the landscape, there is a perfectly good one at The Links.

All they have done on the seafront this year is make another mess.

They should be in the stocks on New Year’s Day, never mind giving themselves a pay rise.

Thinking up plans is one thing, delivering it is quite another.

Can the council give a time and date when this Masterplan will actually take place and how many years we have to wait?

When it started I used to go to work along the seafront to Tynemouth. Now I am retired, have grandchildren and a bus pass.

It’s about time the Local Authority Ombudsman looked at how much this council has spent and is prepared to spend on consultants, architects, and Masterplans, on a building like The Dome that might still in the end, not be safe and fit for purpose.

Susan Johnson