Ambitious plan is nothing new

Hastings Observer letters
Hastings Observer letters

From: Pam Brown, Linton Road, Hastings

The news of a major plan for a Harbour for Hastings brings to mind previous plans to give Hastings & St Leonards these facilities.

Residents will call to mind the plan for a Marina in West St Leonards, widely favoured as bringing new life to that part of our town.

Eventually – after long delay and following a detailed feasibility study of tidal movements and the lack of sufficient land for the required number of houses to pay for the project – the plan was abandoned, but the costs of coming to this conclusion were high.

Next came the ‘Town Centre ‘ Marina – hailed as a unique development right in the centre of town. However- after a short time in this case- and amid warnings that the whole area would flood if the plans went ahead, nothing came of this proposal either.

Then we all remember no doubt, the Hotel on the Beach, in front of Pelham Crescent, this time designed by a much respected and renowned firm, but greeted and opposed in equal parts from the start.

Eventually this too was abandoned – due again to dire warnings, many from long time locals – who described past damage inflicted by natural causes on this area of coastline!

On the face of it this latest plan is exciting, if somewhat unbelievable!

However, in these stringent times, the inevitable costs of exploring these latest plans in the detail that is needed, require tight control and challenge.

Let us remember that in two of the above proposals, funding was promised from 1) ‘The Middle East’, and 2) ‘Switzerland’ – in neither case were funds said to be ‘immediately obtainable.’

So let’s look warily at what is on offer – mindful of the possibilities, and aware of the risks.

Many of us have been there before perhaps?