Schemes are essential to ensure safety

RE: Sea defences at the Spa.

I am writing in reply to a number of your correspondents regarding the proposed rock armour at the Spa.

Firstly I must make it clear that I also am unhappy about a huge area of beach being covered by extra sea defences of any kind.

The beach is a beautiful natural area much appreciated by locals and visitors alike. The council has not taken a decision on this matter lightly. There have been numerous reports from our engineers and experts engaged by us.

A scrutiny committee has twice called in cabinet decisions on the matter.

Your correspondents ask for more information. It is there in the reports to cabinet and scrutiny committees. The full engineering report was presented to cabinet in December 2011 and subsequent reports can be seen in the minutes of Cabinet and the Environment and Economy Overview and Scrutiny Committee.

You can find all these on the Scarborough Borough Council website under Council – Meetings and Agendas.

These reports also explain that we cannot get money to stabilise the cliffs without also including a scheme to prevent excessive wave overtopping. Without these schemes there is a danger to both people and property which the council has a responsibility to protect.

My own main concern was that the proposed concrete stepped revetment was an unsustainable and dangerous option, and I think most people would agree. It would also have taken up a greater area of beach and contributed more to climate change. And it’s not just Green Party members now who are warning about climate change, although we were among the first. Bodies such as the Met Office and NASA provide plenty of scientific evidence.

Your correspondents mention the rejection of rock armour at Whitby. The alternative, as I understand it, will be closing off the piers at times of heavy seas to protect the public. It would be difficult to close the Spa frontage to the public.

In conclusion, I sympathise with the concerns, but the option of merely repairing the existing wall would not have allowed us to deal with the danger of landslips from above which could damage the Spa and other property and endanger life.

Dilys Cluer

Alexandra Park

Scarborough