Carla takes scrap protest to the top

NEWHAVEN hotel and restaurant owner Carla ter Maat has written directly to the French boss of Newhaven Harbour to complain about the new East Quay scrap heap.

Miss ter Maat, who runs the Villa Adriana with her partner Alfio Fedini, asked Newhaven Port and Properties boss Denis Bellenger, who is based in Rouen, what Dieppe business owners would think if he dumped a scrap heap on their door step.

She told him trade had grown considerably at the Villa Adriana over the past five years and Sea Containers and Persimmon had invested heavily in prestigious West Quay homes. But a continual convoy of lorries creating a three-and-a-half thousand tonne metal mountain, which is transferred by boat to the continent for recycling, could threaten the regeneration.

Miss ter Maat wrote: 'East Quay has generally been used for 'clean' cargo such as wood, bananas and tomatoes. Obviously one would expect a certain degree of noise from a working port, but the visual impact and the noise from the plant is causing serious disruption for our business.

'It is having an impact on our hotel guests especially as the work commences so early in the morning.'

She continued: 'We are dismayed with the decision to place this cargo at this location. I would presume the restaurateurs on the quayside at Dieppe would raise similar objections should this pile of scrap metal have been located directly opposite their premises.

'Why can't Newhaven be given the opportunity to regenerate itself as a safe and desirable location?'

Newhaven Port and Properties, which is owned by the French Seine Maritime council, says attempts have been made, unsuccessfully, to secure contracts for other 'clean' cargo and that scrap exports are needed to safeguard jobs and maintain the viability of the port.