Series of small changes become a big change

JAMES White, in the December 16th Whitby Gazette, says, “Without change, we are getting left out in the cold when most towns and cities are moving forward.”

Unfortunately the point at issue is what is constituted by ‘moving forward’.

From what I can make of Mr White’s letter, he would be quite pleased if Whitby became another Blackpool or indeed any large town providing he got his cheap fuel, cheap supermarket shopping, and culturally enlightened restaurants such as McDonalds and KFC.

I am sorry, Mr White, but this is not everything that life is all about. Some of us value corner shops, healthy cafes, not too many traffic fumes and a sense of space.

Mr White would not object I think if Whitby’s character was destroyed by what he calls housing development.

In the context of this letter, ‘moving forward’ and ‘development’ are really a move backwards.

If we wish to preserve Whitby and various intrinsic goods, some of which I have mentioned, then I am afraid extra housing must be built not in Whitby but in towns which are already so faceless that extra building makes no difference.

The main danger is in thinking that any proposed small change in Mr White’s direction is small enough not to matter, but this is a fatal mistake, for the obvious reason that a series of small changes has become a big change.

Peter Lyth, Falcon Terrace, Whitby, by email