Bring back Newhaven’s slipway

I am now going to relate a “Once upon a time” story about Newhaven, so if you are sitting comfortably, I will begin.

Once upon a time, the little town of Newhaven, sitting on the banks of the river Ouse, welcomed small boat owners who might wish to sally forth out to sea for a quiet day’s fishing, or they might meander up between the winding banks to Lewes, enjoying the peace and quiet tranquillity of the countryside as they went.

The visitors had the choice of a small public slipway adjacent to the bridge, or they could use another further down the river. Over the years both these facilities have been denied to the public. First, the slipway by the bridge disappeared when the ring road was constructed with no sign of a replacement being constructed or even suggested.

Then, with the construction of the “Riverside walk” on the eastern side from the bridge towards the sea, the second slipway became inaccessible, derelict and unusable. The only means of launching a small boat which is now available is the commercial one at the marina. All the time there is talk of re-generation of Newhaven and attracting visitors with grandiose schemes of massive water parks, hotels, sporting facilities, and other leisure pursuits.

While all the time nothing ever comes to fruition except the three “D’s” Dereliction, Decline and Degeneration.

How simple it would be therefore for the small disused slipway on the east bank of Denton island (ownership unknown) to be repaired and made available for the few visitors who might wish to make use of it or, better still, why not construct a new one at the end of North Quay where there is also room for parking.

The operators of the incinerator set aside a substantial sum of money for the use of the town as part of the planning application, so here is a good opportunity to use some of that money for the purpose for which it was intended and build it close to that monstrosity.

Shoreham has a slipway available for public use, why not Newhaven?

R Beckett, Newhaven