Wednesday, 16 March 2016


This block  of luxury apartments on Cleethorpes seafront was described as "a monstrosity" at a NELC scrutiny panel meeting.

During a discussion on aspirations for a new-look resort, Coun Matty Brown said The Point sat badly with the traditional-style commercial buildings on Seaview Street.

He went on to  plead for any new development to give at  least "a nod" to Cleethorpes' architectural heritage as a Victorian seaside resort.

Coun Brown volunteered to take part in forthcoming public consultations on enhancement pans for the town.

He suggested these should be held not just in the library but also outside St Peter's Church, where there is more footfall, and in local secondary schools.

Head of regeneration David Brierly acknowledged the sense in this suggestion, noting that "some of the best ideas come from children".

During the same debate, a suggestion for a park-and-ride scheme to ease traffic congestion was rejected as "not feasible" as was a call by Coun David Hasthorpe for underground parking as has proved successful in large towns and cities in Spain and Portugal.

Meanwhile, NELC is continuing to pursue its proposal to purchase and demolish O'Neill's pub in order to open up a vista on to the sea for visitors turning right on the roundabout at the top of High Street.

According to regeneration officer Daniel Jaines-White, the intention is for such initiatives to be achieved by "collaboration" rather than by compulsory purchase.

Meanwhile, efforts will continue to refurbish Alexandra Road - thanks to Heritage Lottery funding of £2-million - and also to make Grant Street more appealing to residents and visitors.

However, hopes are fading for redevelopment of the site of Wonderland on North Promenade.

NELC had hoped that investment might be triggered if the Environment Agency enhanced sea defences at this part of the town, but such a project  is not part of their capital programme.

"That's disappointing,"commented Coun Terry Thurogood.

O'Neill's pub - earmarked for potential demolition in order to open up a view of the sea


HOW much longer must Grimsby wait until the proposed cinema is built at Freshney Place?

The question was put at a NELC scrutiny panel meeting by chairman Coun Ian Shepherd who expressed frustration that longstanding plans to revitalise Top Town with entertainnment facilities have so far failed to bear fruit.

"This part of Grimsby is deserted after 6pm,"complained Coun Shepherd who felt the town had been better off when the vacant space outside the shopping centre served as a bus station.

He demanded "Will I be an old man wating to see Star Wars12 before the cinema is built?"

Regeneration officer Damien Jaines-White said securing the development was proving complicated, but it had reached the pre-application design stage.

"A few commercial aspects need to be finalised, but the owners of Freshney Place are very keen,"he explained."They are committed to the project.

"I share your impatience. There are a few hurdles still to be cleared, but I am confident this development will happen."


AN upbeat note has sounded on five of the six branch libraries offloaded by NELC in responding to spending cuts.

The branches at Grant Thorold, Humberston, Laceby, Nunsthorpe and Scartho are now operated by external organisations which have been allowed to retain much of the book stock and furniture. Volunteers are playing a key part in their success.

"It's a good news story," enthused Sally Jack. "They're buzzing." 

At a NELC scrutiny panel meeting, Coun Tim Mickleburgh said the achievement locally compared favourably by contrast with the demise of libraries in many parts of the country including Birmingham.

Enthusiasm was also sounded by chairman Coun Ian Shepherd . "We should be shouting about this," he insisted.

Head of the borough's libraries service Steve Hipkins confirmed that all branches would soon be WiFi enabled thanks to funding from the Arts Council.

He noted that the new branch library operators - which enjoy 25-year leases - were provided with advice, if requested, but they had all been "happy to work independently".

He continued: "They're standing on their own feet."

The only disappointment is that, despite the best efforts of the ward councillors, no one has come forward to run The Willows branch where the premises are now expected to revert to the local school.

"That's a pity," lamented Coun Terry Thurogood. "I guess it's a dead duck." 

The premises at Humberston - said to be thriving under new management


THERE are hopes that repairs and repainting of the Cleethorpes railway station clock will be carried out by mid-summer.

At a NELC scrutiny panel meeting, the borough’s head of regeneration, David Brierley, said the authority was in weekly contact with Network Rail.

"We have received reassurances that the work will be completed by Armed Forces Weekend (June 24-26)," he said. "There are no guarantees, but they have said they will do it."

Close inspection of the clock reveals that, as well as not telling the time, some of the wooden frame surrounding the face is rotting.

Before the project can begin, Listed Building Consent will be required from local planners.

Coun Matty Brown said he was "delighted" by the news.