Imagine my delight when I saw a placard outside a newsagents recently announcing ‘White Rock baths opening. Work starts this week’.
I had swum in these lovely Victorian baths when staying in Bexhill during the war. I was absolutely delighted. I had long wondered why Hastings Borough Council had done nothing over the years to restore them, and I thought at last it is doing something positive in restoring one of the original Victorian treasures to its original state.
Imagine my despair when I opened your newspaper a week ago and saw with horror that more than £1 million was being spent on converting them into a kids’ skateboard rink. Apart from the shock of this news, I couldn’t believe that this was possible, as I presumed that the swimming baths had a preservation order that they could only be restored for the purpose for which they were built.
It’s not as if we are well-off for swimming baths in this town, the only public one being out of the town on The Ridge. What a delight a swimming pool again right on the promenade would have been for the tourists and holiday-makers visiting Hastings, and of course for the children too. Not to mention the fact that the ‘kids’ already have a large skateboard area in the White Rock Gardens.
If we want to destroy our heritage, I suggest the council get an early visit to Blackpool. I’m sure it could pick up a few more money-making concerns to bring to the seafront of our lovely town.