Why does the council now favour a marina?

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Having just read the story in the Larne Times (October 4) entitled ‘Search on for marina developer’, why is that after 13 years of stating that this area was not suitable for a marina the council have suddenly decided that it is?

I was down there for a walk the other day and it seems the same to me, so if the promenade has remained the same, what now makes it suitable for development?

Larne Borough Council commissioned a team of consultants to carry out a feasibility study into the potential for marina development in the borough. I have no doubt this feasibility study came at quite an expense because I assume the consultants are experts in that type of work. Why then, after receiving the results of that study, are Larne Council totally ignoring its findings? Not only did this study find that the Sandy Bay was not suitable - which in itself would be telling enough - but it found that Sandy Bay was the least suitable site.

The obvious place for any marina to go would be further along in the vicinity of Curran Point and I don’t think anyone in the town has ever objected to the possibility of a marina there. However, Larne Council states that this is not an option because they don’t own any land there. So what? This marina idea is not a council development but a privately funded one, so what does it matter if the council own land there or not? Someone owns it and would stand to benefit from its sale should they wish to take that route. So is this more about Larne Council raking in millions from the sale of land rather than finding the most suitable location?

I’ll leave you with one final question. Let’s say a marina was not going to be built, but the developers applied to build a hotel, restaurant, small apartments, townhouses, fishermen’s cottages and holiday accommodation. Without being associated with a marina would this development be allowed?

James A Tyrrell

Larne