AS part of the Mail’s 2014 local elections coverage, we will be focusing on all 11 wards in Hartlepool where seats are up for grabs.
The Mail will be profiling the 49 candidates who want your vote and examining the issues that are affecting local residents ahead of the election on Thursday, May 22.
Our coverage continues with the Headland & Harbour Ward.
CONCERNS over parking and the state of Hartlepool Marina are a cause for concern among businesses and residents in the Headland & Harbour ward.
In recent months, concerns have been raised about the state of the Marina with visitors giving a thumbs down to the once-thriving tourist attraction after business bosses carried out a survey to try and find out why people are staying away.
There has also been fears for the long-term future of the marina area after seeing a number of rival businesses, including the once successful Lotus Garden, shut up shop, many after the introduction of controversial car parking charges for visitors.
In response bosses at Mandale, the firm which operates the commercial side of the marina, insisted work to keep the area at a high standard was “ongoing” but acknowledged some areas were in need of being freshened up.
Meanwhile, work is ongoing to build a new £830,000 Headland Community Fire Station, which is being built in Durham Street.
Parking, or the lack of it, still remains a major concern amongst residents and businesses in Northgate, on the Headland.
Residents also wanted to see more done to attract new people to the area, although they say the annual Headland Carnival and the Christmas market event held last December did prove to be very popular.
Tommy Boagey was born on the Headland and he has been impressed with improvements.
The 83-year-old moved away to Kendal but regularly returns to town and stays with friends and the retired shipyard plumber said: “There has been a lot of improvements to the Headland and the Marina over the years and it has been done well.
“A big problem is the lack of buses to the Headland on an evening.”
Allison Hart, of the Headland, works as a florist at CMB Fruiterers & Florist on the Headland’s North Gate.
The 40-year-old said: “We need to have something to bring people to the Headland. Parking is a big problem on the Headland. It is free but only if you can actually get parked.”
Nicola Winwood, 25, jointly owns of Pretty Bows Wedding & Gift Boutique and is mum to two-year-old Ollie Winwood, said: “It’s quite hard to get parked on the Headland and there is double yellow lines where people could park.
“The Headland is a close-knit community and people like to do their shopping here if they can.”
Andrea Rogan, 31, runs Legend’s Catering and said: “The Carnival is great and the Christmas markets was a good event but we need more things like that. Parking’s the biggest problem.”