PLANS: Return this site to nature

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I am writing this letter on behalf of the Friends of Bracken Hill and Link End, Alnmouth. We are opposed to the commercial development at Link End, which is a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB).

During the last 10 years the site has only been used occasionally for day visits in the summer months, with no overnight stays. Due to vandalism over the last three years the site has now run its course.

We want the site to be cleared and returned to nature, as was intended by the previous leaseholder when the site came to its natural end, and not to be reinstated for commercial gain.

Link End should be allowed to go to sleep at night as it has done for the last 10 or more years, the only sound coming from bats, birds, barn owls and the other wildlife.

The proposed eco-friendly shepherds’ huts and artist colony sounds romantic. The truth is shepherds’ huts are only eco-friendly if they are not used on this particular site.

When you introduce people to the site you get noise, light, smoke, sewage and dirty water pollution.

Storage structures need to be erected for fire fighting equipment, for gas canisters, water, erection of washing lines and provision of refuse bins. Each of these sounds innocuous, join them together and the site becomes anything but environmentally friendly.

There is no clarity as to how the site is to be approached. The track running along and on the Alnmouth Village golf course was originally for access to Marden cottages and not specifically for the caravan site.

This track will not sustain intensification of vehicle usage with the introduction of service vehicles for refuse collection, sewage/waste collection, gas delivery, change of linen and towels, transportation of visitors and cleaning staff, delivery of provisions and water, not to mention the erection and installation of the shepherds’ huts themselves.

If the intention is to park the visitor vehicles in the village then this can only add to the existing car parking problems we have.

We have over 200 beds available each night in the village for visitor accommodation. Why not encourage the artists to stay in the village and spend their money in the village shops and pubs? This would be eco-friendly, there would be no need for Link End to be developed, and footfall would remain in the village.

An extension of use of the site from just the summer months to all year round would have a detrimental effect on the existing wildlife and flora.

How will the site be controlled?

Link End should be for all to enjoy – dog walkers, ramblers, golfers and walkers of St Oswald’s Way – and not for commercial gain.

As Friends of Bracken Hill and Link End we do not appreciate the erection of ‘Private’ and ‘No Admission’ signs at Link End. This has never happened before.

Is this a sign of things to come?

Name and address supplied