Scarborough's empty spaces to be looked at as part of new leader’s ‘people’s renaissance’

New council leader to look at options for former Futurist site.
New council leader to look at options for former Futurist site.

The new leader of Scarborough Council has set out the next phase in what he is calling his ‘people’s renaissance’ for the borough.

Cllr Steve Siddons was named as the first Labour leader of the authority for 20 years on Monday and straight away pledged to look again at unpopular decisions made by the previous Conservative administration.

These include the future of the long-running North Bay development, which encompasses plans for a multi-screen cinema, the deal with Flamingo Land to build an attraction on the former Futurist site in South Bay, and to look again at the closure of public toilets.

Now, the leader has said he wants to make “temporary but appropriate” use of sites in the town that are sitting empty to host events.

Cllr Siddons said: “The Tour de Yorkshire pictures screened across the world did not show Scarborough at its best.

“The hole that remains after the Futurist demolition has joined the Windmill site and the old North Bay pool eyesores that have been created in recent years.

“As well as working for the best long term future use of the cleared sites I hope we can use them for temporary attractions of a high calibre for the benefit of the town.

“And it’s not just the seafront, the whole lower part of the town can be part of a renaissance for Scarborough.

“This has long been overdue and something talked about over many years. With investment in the right places, this part of town can be brought back to an area people will be proud to walk through again. I’m determined that other areas of our borough will follow.

“I am working to deliver change; change in how democracy is delivered for the people of the borough and changes to our towns and villages that will re-ignite passion and pride in all residents throughout the borough.”

Cllr Siddons added that council officers had already been tasked with looking at re-opening closed toilets.

The leader will next week name his reduced cabinet as he looks to change the way in which the council makes decisions.

There will be just three cabinet members, down from eight, with more committees implemented, which he says will give more councillors a voice in decision making.

Cllr Siddons was voted in as leader of the council after no party gained overall control in last week’s local elections.

The Conservatives got 16 of the 46 seats but after Labour ended the day on 13 and independents took home 14 seats, along with two Greens, the Conservative leader Cllr Derek

Bastiman decided not to put his name on the council leadership ballot, saying that Cllr Siddons “had the numbers”.