Wall queries

CLLR CLUER’S letter “Rock Armour is the best way forward for town” (Evening News, April 27), misses (innocently I hope) the essential point. The question is not: “Which is better, rock armour or concrete steps?”, but rather: “Are either of them at all necessary?”

Using most of the space to advance the doubtful virtues of rock armour, without any reference to appearance, amenity, accessibility and loss of sands, she tells us that “After lengthy studies by engineers, we know that we cannot just repair the existing sea well”. Which engineers? Are these the same “independent and professional” marine engineers who misinformed councillors of the need to dump a mile of rock armour and concrete accropodes all around the North Bay and East Pier?

Recently, M&J Drilling has stabilised and preserved visually intact Margate’s harbour arm which is 250 metres long and has withstood the sea for the past 200 years. The same methods and materials might be used for the Spa wall.

Yet where is the evidence to prove that Scarborough’s sea wall is as weak and as endangered as Margate’s?

According to one highly respected and very experienced emeritus professor of ocean engineering, the existing Victorian sea wall at the Spa is “essentially intact” and has “many decades of serviceable life left” (Evening News, April 24).

So who is right, Cllr Cluer? What are your qualifications for disagreeing with Dr Denness?

But, of course, we should all have known, it’s climate change, stupid? Without giving any details of projected sea levels and without specifying what “going into the future” actually means in terms of years, decades or centuries, all you have to utter are the magic words “climate change”. Is that an argument or a presumption? Are seas “increasingly violent” are tides “getting higher”? More violent and higher than when the Spa terrace was washed away in 1836? More violent and higher than 1861, 1880 or 1953?

Cllr Cluer might also ask her “friends from the north” why they objected so strongly and successfully against a rock armour “solution” for Whitby’s “crumbling piers”.

Jack Binns

Chatsworth Gardens