Letters - February 3, 2015

Kurtis Sumpton, from Spennymoor, who was attacked while on a birthday celebration trip to Blackpool
Kurtis Sumpton, from Spennymoor, who was attacked while on a birthday celebration trip to Blackpool
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Violent attack

Blackpool damaged

Spending holidays/short breaks in Blackpool was one of the main highlights away from our daily routine when I lived in County Durham just three miles from Spennymoor, home of Kurtis Sumpton, who was set upon during a night out by thugs for no apparent reason (Gazette Jan 30).

What a birthday celebration that turned out to be and one Kurtis (pictured) won’t forget. The state he was in may surely have put him off coming to Blackpool ever again due to the pack of hyenas who attacked him as if targeting a vulnerable new born gazelle.

You don’t expect such an attack anywhere but even less so in a holiday resort and anyone who spouts off that it’s a sign of the times, it isn’t a good enough excuse when it shouldn’t happen.

Not only did it result in horrific injuries but caused frantic worry for Kurtis’ parents.

All thanks to hotel proprietor Joe Formosa where Kurtis was staying, who called police and ambulance, proving that there are still decent folk among scum, the likes of ex-mining communities surrounding Spennymoor never seemed to escalate because we were brought up better than that.

Hopefully, our resort’s authorities will find out who the ‘sewage’ is and come down on them like a ton of bricks, because it’s ex-mining, cotton mill and numerous other industrial community holidays that helped build Blackpool’s popularity and where numerous fun seekers still come from to enjoy it.

Clifford Chambers

Ashton Road

Blackpool

Working men’s club

Future fears

Why are so many working men’s clubs closing down throughout the country?

The Working Men’s Club Institute, known today as the CIU, was founded in 1862 by the Reverend Henry Solly, a Unitarian Church Minister who had a vision to unite Victorian working communities.

In the 1960s’ height of 
‘clubland’, there were over four thousand CIU affiliated clubs in the UK.

Today, the WMC is struggling to find its place in contemporary society and they have been on a gradual decline since the 1980s. Over the past 30 years over 2,000 clubs have closed down.

Several of the Blackpool clubs are placed in a disadvantaged position.

They were either built or extended to accommodate the thriving industrial holiday market that the resort once enjoyed.

CIU members from all over would visit Blackpool and be allowed entry to the cabaret summer shows the larger clubs had until recent years.

But the large clubs no longer benefit from the summer buffer to balance the books.

As a vocalist I have personal memories of performing at social clubs around Blackpool. They offered an entertainer a firm grounding.

Times and social trends have changed. Unfortunately many of the club committees about 20 years ago were slow to embrace change. Clubs were once the focal point of the community and you would find families of several generations socialising together.

Because of the dour image associated, a lot of young people don’t follow into social clubs anymore.

It is vital that younger guest members are welcomed and encouraged to join pool or darts teams via social media such as Facebook .

The upkeep and unreasonable rateable values of these buildings are a challenge.

The balance sheets and property valuations of clubs in Blackpool are nowhere near the inflated figures of 10 years ago.

Stephen Pierre

Abingdon Street

Blackpool

Fracking

Water worries

Four-fifths of our world is covered in water, just a tiny percentage is suitable drinking water. Fracking can poison well water, and there is no argument about that.

It’s pointless being warm if you can’t get a drink, we cannot afford to contaminate any more sources suitable for human consumption.

Desalination is not the answer, it is very expensive.

I personally can’t make a decision one way or the other, the evidence is sketchy, what I do know is that if we poison our sources of drinking 
water, a gallon of drinking water will cost more than a gallon of petrol.

Bruce Allen

Hawkshead Terrace

Blackpool

Development questions

Power to the people

The problem with criticising people for being NIMBYs (Not In My Back Yard) is that we all have back yards or gardens.

Are we to allow anything at all development-wise “for the good of the country” to take place in our back yards and ruin our lives or heatlh?

I thought an Englishman’s home was his castle. All power to the NIMBYs!

J Stephens

South Shore