People who live in pretty places


There’s a lot of coastal Nimbyism abroad these days. My local paper recently ran a reader’s letter headlined ‘Wholesale destruction of a beautifil beach’. The correspondent who dubbed him/herself as ‘a horrified,local resident’ was too chicken to allow their name or address to be published. This writer, safe in the knowledge that no-one could describe in violent terms their own place on the planet, raged and dribbled against the cockle-fishing fleet from among whose number several were killed after a mine blew their boat sky high during the evacuation of Dunkirk.

The writer accused them of law-breaking, covering the area in concrete, and ‘storing huge containers’. The fact is that there never was a beach, at least not until the cocklers turned up boiled their catch and sprinkled the shells on the muddy shoreline.

It is not the first time those who want to live on the lid of a chocolate box have forgotten the sweetmeats inside. At the yachting haven of Pin Mill in Suffolk outraged second-home owners have waged war against shipwrights for having ‘unsightly’ dry docks or living aboard old barge hulks. The only reason Pin Mill came into being was because of barges, the barging trade and the folks who serviced and crewed them.

These prune-sphinctered whingers should walk in their docksiders inland until somebody says”: What are you wearing those for?” and settle down.