Following on from my letter last week the report from the inspector only served to confirm my assertion that there has been no Asset Management and Maintenance Programme in place because structures such as this do not suddenly fail in the manner this has.
Given its location it was always at a greater risk than other assets that the council has a responsibility for and given its importance to the tourist economy the question still has to be who or whom is responsible and what action has been taken with those who have overseen this debacle?
The interview on BBC Radio Tees with Mr Bennett, Scarborough Borough Council Head of Tourism and Culture last week was an enlightening experience. His answers to the age of the extension and its structural composition were guess work, whilst the reason given for not inspecting it sooner pure fantasy ie weather conditions.
I would like to remind or inform him that in the Whitby area there are many scaffolding companies with extremely competent staff who could have provided a safe access platform had one been needed to work on, if you can cantilever scaffold an oil rig in the North Sea this is a walk in the park to these able people had it been needed.
Moreover the reply that east pier extension is never be replaced followed quickly with the reason Scarborough gets more spent on it is because there are four times the number of inhabitants perhaps the more revealing. To a town reliant on tourism the former reply is simply unacceptable and local elected members now have to front up and take the lead, whilst the latter certainly only serves to underscore and confirm the long held views that Whitby is and always will be second best.
I would remind the highly remunerated person that there are villages who receive no funding at all with residents who contribute annually to the borough council pot, and hence his salary, who feel equally marginalised through the financial regime deployed by this council and promulgated by our elected members.
If we were to take head count as a reason for the apportionment of spending one has to assume that as there are no residents at Stone Henge it should be left alone completely!
What should be the prerequisite as to how the money is spent is the value the asset(s) has/have to the economy or the aesthetic benefit that the area derives from the expenditure, now that the answer for the spending inequality is in the public domain as extolled so eloquently by Mr Bennett it really is time for the elected members to stand up and do something, but then again brewery and celebration come to mind!
Must remember to take the tablets
Keith Thompson, Goathland