What you say… #144

Posted on 08th February 2024 | in Letters & Email

Thank you Amble from Revd John

On 14 November I reluctantly stepped down from my post and role as Priest in Charge at St Cuthbert’s, Amble. It was a huge wrench for me to leave the work which I have very much loved.
I have been very fortunate to be part of a very friendly community. My church wardens Mack, Lesley and more recently Wendy, our treasurer Mike and the PCC members have been very supportive. My work in church has been made much easier by those around me. I wish to thank David our verger and Beverley our organist for their assistance and help. I have been greatly helped by our worship team and I also wish to thank the very many who volunteer for jobs in and around the church and church hall. I have benefitted from working with Mothers Union and men’s group members.
As well as my own church flock I have made many pals in the wider community and I thank them for their friendship. I have valued the links with our sister churches in the ecumenical partnership Coquet Churches Together including my friends at Hauxley Chapel. I owe a debt of thanks to those in our local schools especially the heads, staff and governors, Amble Youth Project, Northumberland Theatre Company, Amble and Warkworth Rotary, Amble Lifeboat, the local businesses including cafes, pubs and restaurants, Amble Sword Team, local funeral directors, not forgetting our Mayor Craig Weir, the town councillors and the county councillors and Amble Development Trust and of course my lovely neighbours in Straffen Court.
This has been an intense six and a half years for me. Sometimes life has been rather challenging such as during the Coronavirus Pandemic when the government forced the closure of all churches in the land.
However, when I reflect on my time here, I realise that I have been greatly blessed. I will leave with many happy memories of my time in Amble, the town I have learnt to call my own.
I wish to record my grateful thanks to everyone who has contributed to my positive experience here in any way whatsoever.
Thank you, Amble.
John McDermott


Could the Duke do the ‘right thing’?

There is a need in Amble for accommodation for those who are not healthy enough to enjoy full independence but not in need of fulltime care. Prolonging healthy independence is not only the right thing to do but also the most cost effective.
An important component for healthy living is to live within a neighbourhood like this proposed development could be. What can possibly go wrong? As it stands, buyer’s greed for personal gain is what will prevent the stated long-term objective for the development to be a Lifetime Neighbourhood unless the terms of sale incorporate legally binding use restrictions for primary residence only and prohibiting second home and business use.
It is not too late for Amble to reverse the course it is on but the will to do so appears to be non existent. We must learn from Cornwall who are doing too little too late.
Behind every threat lies an opportunity. In this case, a golden one for the Duke, through his representatives, to take the initiative and incorporate a clause in the sale of each property restricting it for primary home use only. It would cost them nothing and would enhance their reputation.
If this precedent was repeated for future developments, it would follow that the depth of workforce expertise would be strengthened which in turn would encourage companies to choose Amble for a base thereby reducing dependence on tourism and encourage families to make Amble their home.
For the sake of future generations, have the courage to do the obvious and right thing. Put Amble on track for a Lifetime Neighbourhood.

Douglas Temple,
Planning Ref. 23/04183/FUL Land south of the Gut. Amble.


Citizen scientists wanted for Coquet

Water quality and water pollution have been the subjects of many news stories recently. Only 14% of rivers in England have good ecological status. Warkworth and Amble are proud to be involved in a Citizens Science project, as part of the Coquet Rivers Action Group.
The Environment Agency are supplying us with water testing kits to gather information on the health and status of the River Coquet. Data will be recorded and coordinated with other areas all along the river, with a view to identifying and rectifying issues. We will also be liaising with The Rivers Trust and Northumbrian Water and any other interested parties.
If you are interested in the project, whether it be as a recreational river user, a wildlife enthusiast or anything else, please get in touch. We’d love to hear from you.
Lynne Russell


Jimmy Nickalls

The last edition of the Ambler contained a feature about Jimmy Nickalls and a photo of two children at his grave in Amble Cemetery (#143 p19).
I remember he and his wife had the busy fish and chip shop at the end of Broomhill Street with a little general shop and post office next door. This was pre-war.)
I don’t know anything about his 1920s soccer career at Chelsea FC but I remember watching him score a lovely goal in a Northern Alliance football match for Amble in the mid-thirties.
They had four sons who all did well. Jim who married Audrey Priest, was an accountant, who was also a member of Sunderland F.C. for a while. Rob was in finance and with Sir John Hall, was involved in the planning and building of the Metro Centre in Gateshead. Sadly, he died as a young man, but I believe there is a building named after him at the centre.
Alan worked for an engineering firm in Tyneside, he lives in Warkworth and his youngest son Derek has an accountancy business in Bridge Street, Amble.
George Young, Amble


Exciting environmental projects

I was interested to read in the last issue of the Ambler that, thanks to a new grant, the Northumberland Wildlife Trust is hoping to support up to eighty young people aged sixteen to seventeen in designing and delivering environmental projects to benefit their local communities. What a fantastic opportunity for those eligible to apply.
The scheme aims to help young people to improve their well-being and connection to nature, while building skills and friendships along the way. Projects could encompass helping to create new wildlife spaces or perhaps monitoring the wildlife which already exists in and around Amble.
Persimmons have just created a new wildlife space along Percy Drive in the form of a hedgerow with trees. Birds and insects are sure to make use of this new wildlife corridor which links the woodland around the sewage works with the gardens in Priory Park and Tynedale.
More such schemes are needed to offset the loss of habitat elsewhere.
Or how about designing a new mini wetland area around the flooded areas of the meadow near the Coquet Vets premises.
The NWT has plenty of experience in developing similar habitat. Perhaps the council could be persuaded to temporarily suspend grass mowing and allow the native flora which already exists to be surveyed and appreciated.
There are also many smaller areas which harbour wildlife. Wouldn’t it be exciting to identify such places and encourage even more wildlife. Nestboxes for birds, bat boxes and hibernating boxes for butterflies would be excellent additions.
The opportunities to make a real difference within our community are endless. Well done and good luck to those who decide to get involved.

Hugh Tindle
via email


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