With reference to the small picture article regarding the completion of the “major project” of refurbishing Montague Place in Worthing.
I am a relative new comer to Worthing however it seems to me that the implied pride in completing this project is misplaced because, what was a focal point in the town centre with its pavilion and seating where people could sit and pass the time of day, has been replaced by a faceless, uninviting and draughty open space. The concrete steps are unsuitable for older people and the stretched fabric canopies will not provide shelter from inclement weather like the old pavilion.
While the paving is a welcome improvement, I suspect it will not stand the test of time as the porous nature of clay brick paving leaves it susceptible to spalling from frost in the winter months and unfortunately the paving will also suffer from vandalism with the small bricks being removed and lost leaving gaps which will become a health and safety issue.
Of course it is not just the pavilion that has gone but the nice mural just before the entrance to the arcade has also made way for the “improvement scheme”.
The local authority has reputably spent £1.2million on this project but I believe that the money would have been better spent on refurbishing the old pavilion and its seating and renewing the paving in the immediate vicinity, thus retaining it as a feature and focal point for the town centre.
Anthony D Spender
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