As a relatively new blogger, and not a political blogger at that, I have been tentative about wading into the shark-infested waters surrounding the proposed redevelopment of Penzance harbour on pasties & cream.
*braces self* As any Penwith resident will know, the so-called Option A, plans to redevelop large parts of the historic harbour wall and build a ferry terminal on Battery Rocks beach, has been the subject of very heated and embittered debate in Penzance over the past two years, creating the mother of all bad vibes.
At one point, shops were displaying their for or against poster in the window and in one drinking establishment, I even heard about an informal ‘don’t mention the harbour’ policy!
As you may have read, last week the Council waved through these controversial plans – despite the fact the only Penzance councillor on the committee voted against, despite the fact that English Heritage have upped the listed status of the harbour wall, despite the fact there are cheaper, less harmful alternatives on the table – and I feel I can contain my thoughts no longer.
In my humble opinion, there seem to be an array of Bloody Good Points to be made against Option A – all of which are expressed eloquently and reasonably on the Friends of Penzance Harbour website. But my instinctive objection is much simpler and less political.
For me, the aesthetic and historical value of Battery Rocks and the old harbour wall is priceless – and once it has disappeared under concrete and a noisy coach park, it will be lost forever.
Thinking about how best to go about this, my thorniest blog post yet, I decided that since so many words have already been written (even the national press and radio have got involved at various points), and since it is an exquisite blue-skied autumn day, I’d take my camera down to the area in question and photograph what is at stake. Here are the results:
I don’t know about you but I find the idea of losing these things really sad. I swim there in summer. I walk there most days. It’s got the best view in town of St Michael’s Mount.
If you also have an opinion about this either way (or even if you’re on the fence – there’s an ‘I don’t know’ option!), please vote in the online poll being run by the Cornishman this week – you don’t need to register and it takes a millisecond to click your vote.
And if you happen to feel the same way as me about it, you can also sign up for the Friends of Penzance Harbour email updates on ways to help – usually in the form of easy-to-send emails.