Pleasure to see some support

'MEN lurking in the shadows', 'programme of secrecy', 'conspirators', 'majority being ignored', 'gradual destruction of Bexhill's once lovely seafront', 'corrupt individuals'.

These are just a few of the comments in recent letters to the Observer relating to the Next Wave Project.

Is this really Bexhill’s seafront regeneration that we are talking about or have the writers a hidden agenda regarding any changes to the town?

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Is it coincidence that many of the sea front objectors also complain about the Pavilion, changes to the town centre and now the development plans for a small area off Herbrand Walk. A classic statement in one letter concluding, that the Pavilion does not “contribute to the economy of the town or district”. Words simply fail me on this occasion.

It would appear that most of the objectors are, shall we say, of more mature years, having arrived in the town in the not too distant past. In other words, “we came here because of what it was and it must not change”. They also continue to maintain that the majority support their views. Well, as J Harris wrote “not me”, a sentiment that I have expressed many times.

I am indeed not sure where this majority comes from. The 400 complainers at the town hall, if indeed there were 400, represents about 1.5 per cent of Bexhill’s adult residents. The Town Forum, a hot-bed of reactionary thought, has an average attendance of 0.5 per cent of such residents. It was therefore a pleasure reading the letters from J Harris and The Primary Schools’ Council for Bexhill, reminding readers of the usually silent majority living in our town.

One change which has been happening in Bexhill over the past 25 years, but strangely enough has not been noticed by our serial objectors, is the decline in quality of the town centre shops. From a high class range of outlets in say 1985 to the 99p economy which we have today. Is the reason for their silence because they helped to bring about that decline? Because what do the shop owners say when asked why they shut down? A growing lack of support from residents.

Bexhill is a great place to live. But it has to develop and move forward. We have much to offer to residents and visitors alike, the new museum, the Elva Business Centre, the Next Wave Sea Front Project and the regenerated Egerton Park, not to mention the star of the town, the De La Warr Pavilion.

The present serial objectors have the same rallying cry as those of 1935 had when protesting about the building of the Pavilion. “Nothing must change”. Well, fortunately the Pavilion was completed as will be the Next Wave Project.

JOHN BETTS

Eden Drive

Bexhill