Tea rooms just tip of the iceberg

I WRITE following the article entitled ‘Dismay over vacant tea rooms’ in the Herald of May 25. That informative article, I am sorry to say, highlights only the ‘tip of the iceberg’ created, or allowed to form at Pevensey Castle by lacklustre English Heritage.

It is clearly evident the castle has been allowed to decay into a pale shadow of its former majestic condition which can no longer be enjoyed fully by the many thousands of visitors to the historic village annually.

Over the Jubilee weekend, one which should announce to everyone the greatness of our country and its heritage, many visitors would have had a great opportunity to see for themselves the deterioration which English Heritage has permitted over very recent years.

In addition to the boarded-up ‘Castle Cottage Tea Room’ and its unkempt garden, two other examples are there for all to see with dismay.

1) all around the inside and outside of the ancient Roman outer walls great growths of destructive and offensive ivy, brambles and other weeds have been allowed to become invasive without any obvious attention whatsoever

2) the castle moat has been allowed to become so choked with growth and weeds that virtually none of its formerly attractive water is visible.

These are but two of many sad sights. One assumes the main objective of English Heritage nationally is to preserve in good order and condition the heritage of our land, particularly its ancient buildings.

At Pevensey such an objective is clearly unattained and it is time the proper authority, perhaps in the form such as the Parish, District and County Councils, together with Sussex Archaeological Society, should do whatever may be necessary to force English Heritage to ‘wake up’ and do much better at Pevensey.

If early success by such authorities is unsuccessful, as I feel is likely to be the case, they should seek the power of the ‘Ombudsman’, MP or whichever higher authority is appropriate, to make English Heritage act as necessary.

H MILLER

Montfort Road, Westham