I NOTE with absolute horror and disbelief the proposal to build on Seaclose Recreation Ground.

We have seen, already, huge chunks taken from it with the construction of numerous buildings, including: a Premier Inn, a restaurant, a set of council offices, and also several distinct car parks.

There was also the demolition of one of the recreation ground’s facilities, the popular outdoor swimming pool! Rather than upgrade it, the council at that time decided to demolish this popular facility, in which I and my family used to swim.

How many of us benefit from the upgrading of the harbour? How many of us own yachts? However, huge numbers of us love the countryside and to enjoy its wildlife! When is this kind of despoiling of our green countryside going to stop?

This rapidly diminishing facility has been invaluable during the coronavirus pandemic, helping to renew the mind and keeping people sane. Furthermore, it is a resource which thousands of us enjoy all the year round.

The reasoning is quite clear: Our Island motto, ‘All this beauty is of God’ is fast becoming ‘all this concrete is of men.’

If one were to doubt my words about the countryside being rapidly destroyed, just take a look at our Island’s diminishing beauty:

In my youth, the Island population was 97,000, and had been so for 50 years. Since then it has leaped by approximately 50,000 to 140-145,000.

There is a dreadfully inaccurate misnomer being bandied about on the Island, just now, and that is, the most wrongly naming of areas of desecration as ...meadows. Take, for example: Pan Meadows, Bluebell Meadows and Hawthorn Meadows to name but a few.

What is there that honestly describes them as meadows? The reality is that, in totality, they are vast acres of Island meadowlands covered over in concrete.

The same fate has befallen the meadows behind what was the IW Creameries, these have been built over; the fields surrounding Carisbrooke Station have all been built over; Lower St. Cross Farm fields have all been built over; much of what was Marsh’s Farm (Alvington Manor) has been built over; the land adjacent to Gunville Brickyard has been built over, and more of it is set to be built over!

There was a beautiful wildlife valley where lived red squirrels, jays, green finches, gold finches, bull finches, thrushes, wrens, and blackbirds, to name but a few of its avian occupants, all were dependent upon it.

This valley had its own stream, vibrant with fish, kingfishers flashed along it and fed therein. What now of it all? The stream, now lifeless, runs through dark, underground pipe work.

A further example of short sightedness is that of the opportunity afforded by Newport’s football ground. The team moved sites: that beautiful green pitch could have become a beautiful park extension to Church Litten; but no, that lush, green field is now covered in concrete. The old, adjacent cattle market, too, is built over, by order of Newport’s recurring concrete-loving councils.

Oh, how Southampton could teach us much about fulfilling the need of creating beautiful green parks within the city boundaries.

Where are any new green parkland spaces, in Newport? There are none, and now the council keeps eating away at Seaclose, as more and more huge bites are being taken out of it. As Newport extends, as inevitably it will, at least for posterity’s sake, let us keep Seaclose.

If building must occur, and reluctantly it must, then for a change, consider building up the north’s brown field sites, of which there are many, and give work up there, as promised by the Government.

Ere long, if the sacrilegious stealing of green land continues, we shall be, as we are fast becoming, one concrete expanse called, The Concrete City of the Isle of Wight, devoid of parks and fields and meadows.

Have you got a view on this, or any other subject? Why not send a letter to the editor. Send it to editor@iwcp.co.uk by noon on Tuesday. Please try and keep it under 350 words.