Village pond ‘becoming an eyesore’

NEEDS WORK ... Coun Jeff Milburn at Cleadon Village pond, which he says needs renovating. Below, the council's plans.
NEEDS WORK ... Coun Jeff Milburn at Cleadon Village pond, which he says needs renovating. Below, the council's plans.

A COUNCILLOR wants to see a village pond restored to its former glory.

Coun Jeff Milburn is concerned at the state of the pond in Cleadon Village.

Cleadon Pond proposals

Cleadon Pond proposals

The pond, which is situated at the heart of the village, is a remnant of an ice age lake and dates back to Roman times, but in recent years it has fallen into a state of disrepair.

Coun Milburn, the Conservative representative for Cleadon and East Boldon, thinks the overgrown plants, grass and weeds are an eyesore and is worried the decaying wooden perimeter fence is dangerous.

He said: “The site is overgrown and full of rubbish, and the wooden fence is rotting and looks terrible.

“The pond is the focal point of our beautiful village and at the moment it’s an eyesore.

“People wait for the bus right next to the pond, so dozens of people get to see how bad it is every day.

“There are elderly people and children always around there and, at the moment, it looks as if the railing could break at any time – then where would we be?

“It could cause someone a serious injury – or worse, someone could fall in and drown.”

Coun Milburn thinks South Tyneside Council need to take responsibility and find the money to improve the pond.

He added: “The council has a duty of care to the borough and its people.

“At the moment they are neglecting the appearance of Cleadon Village and the safety of the residents.”

Coun Tracey Dixon, lead member for area management and community safety at South Tyneside Council, said plans have been drawn up to improve the pond, but no funding has been found to carry out the renovations.

She said: “The council is working closely with the Cleadon in Bloom group and a project plan has already been prepared with a view to upgrading the Cleadon Village pond in an environmentally sustainable way.

“The proposals include new seating, interpretation boards and new cast iron railings in keeping with the village’s conservation area status.

“The plans also include engineering works to level out and raise the planting areas and improve the pathways, while a large area of duckweed would be removed with straw bales installed to keep it under control in the future.

“The next stage is for the council to help Cleadon in Bloom to apply for money from a range of different funders, so that the plan can be put into action.”

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