What is going wrong with our water quality?
Scarborough claims to be the first seaside resort as history books inform us that during the 17th century, Mrs Thomasin Farrer tasted the waters pouring from a natural spring bubbling from a cliff to the south of the town.
The waters were said to cure minor ailments. Mrs Farrer was the wife of one of Scarborough’s prominent residents John Farrer and through their efforts of promotion with friends and neighbours thousands of visitors flocked to taste the bitter water.
Four centuries later, on the evening of Wednesday, January 3, 2018, BBC Look North ran an interview with representatives from the Environment Agency stating how they are going to “get tough” on those polluting the South Bay waters. Reference to seagull and dog waste, effluent from a local factory and human waste was made, as previously reported in this newspaper.
The TV presenter Phil Bodmer concluded the report by saying he had visited the town over the recent holiday period and was “glad he did not go for a paddle”.
The Farrer family must be turning in their graves.
As I have written several emails to councillors and officers at Scarborough Borough Council, highlighting my own views and observations by members of the public and their anti-social behaviour of littering, whilst at work in my own seafront business. I am very concerned at how our day-trippers will perceive the South Bay for their holiday experience. Many of us are aware of plastic pollution highlighted on the BBC documentary recently, but the problem is deeper than this.
Should those who took part in the Boxing Day raft race and New Year’s Day dip be worried for their health and should surfing be stopped in South Bay? Will the RNLI want to continue to provide and patrol the beaches and facilitate the schools’ surf training in South and North Bay in future?
When is an open meeting going to be arranged at the Town Hall with interested parties to explain in plain English what is going wrong and why North Bay also will not have its prestigious Blue Flag now?
So far long-winded awaited reports have been made, with no direct recommendations.
This issue needs urgently addressing before the summer season – the South Bay is after all the town’s “shop window”.