The latest thing everyone is talking about is the “Olympic Legacy”, how all the youngsters have been inspired to take up sports or athletics, while our council sells off the kids playing fields to builders for housing!
There are a couple of pre-school playing fields in the town but once the kids grow to school age they are expected to be invisible until they grow into adults, everyone keeps going on about obesity, binge drinking, vandalism, anti-social behaviour, drugs, smoking, etc.
What are kids and teenagers supposed to do with their time?
It was bad enough 50 years ago trying to find a field to play in or somewhere to just sit and “hang out” but now all those places have been built on, all the trees we climbed to make swings, all the fields, all the waste land, gone! Everywhere is just housing estates.
They can’t play in the street because of all the parked cars, its not even safe to ride a bike on the roads now with 4x4s coming round every corner.
So the kids wander about, huddle in bus shelters, under bridges, drinking, smoking, treated like lepers by the general public.
If you push youngsters out of society now, how can you expect them to become part of that society when they grow into adulthood? They need space to grow, to run and jump, places to play team games, places to socialise with their friends, and people to help them when they find a sport they are good at! not to be told to go away and don’t come back till you’ve grown up.
According to national statistics there are about 1,500 between five and 15 year old kids in whitby and another 350 older kids, (not to mention the 19 to 21 year olds).
Where the hell do 2,000 kids go and how much space is there for them to play in? You work it out, how many kids can you fit onto that space?
Schools do help but the kids need to have somewhere away from schools as well. Where they can be kids without people telling them what to do all the time.
Give them somewhere now while the summer is still here, If it’s not sorted out now there will be very few kids still interested in athletics by Christmas.
Fred Anderson, High Stakesby, Whitby