THE other day I was driving the seafront past the pier and thought ‘How did we ever get to this?’
Then I realised that the eyesore that confronted me had been deteriorating for at least the past 30 years that I have lived in this borough. And still I am told that a rebuilt pier will be an asset for all in the area.
How can this be true? After all, the pier was originally built as a place for entertainment and shelter for those who came to Hastings for their holidays and the weather was poor.
But people don’t generally come to Hastings for their annual holidays any more; they come for the day or possibly the weekend.
And if the weather forecast is bad they have the choice of not coming. Personally I doubt that I have visited the pier more than five times in my 30 years of residence and I find the same among my friends and neighbours. So why do we want to rebuild the pier?
Hastings is world-known for its association with 1066, it is well-known for its fishing fleet, its castle and its Old Town.
Unfortunately it is now becoming well-known for having an eyesore on its seafront, a reputation which can hardly do us any good. Who wants to visit Hastings with its eyesore?
People do visit the castle, the Old Town and the fishing fleet; these are the areas, plus probably St Mary-in-the-Castle, in which we should be investing, not a derelict eyesore.
Now I am certain that the pier holds fond and nostalgic memories for some, but that is just what they are and they will never go away.
Let us look forward now, clear away the eyesore past, concentrate on a positive future and not waste precious funds chasing a nostalgic dream.