The island looks back this week 50 years to a time that is still seared into many memories.
The fire that claimed 50 lives at Summerland is one of the darkest moments of our history. It is certainly the worst in living memory.
For many years, people were understandably reluctant to talk about it. The emotions were too raw.
As the years went by, the health service and the police certainly learned a lot about post-traumatic stress. In 1973, it was less well understood than it is now.
The victims’ relatives will have had similar experiences.
The garden of remembrance that we currently have near the bottom of Summer Hill really is poor.
The ‘new’ Summerland was demolished in 2006.
Seventeen years on from demolition, the site is just an eyesore.
There was one serious plan to develop the site but that fell flat.
There are no entertainment venues at that side of the promenade any more. The venues that remain are concentrated in the town centre and the quay. So any development at the Onchan end of the promenade would be out on a limb.
So a new entertainment venue is unlikely on the site that once housed Summerland and the Aquadrome.
Perhaps flats could be built there?
We’d like to see the surveyor’s report on the cliff. And the faces of residents when storms throw up rocks at their windows and sea water corrodes their cars.
A simple garden, with a memorial and a space for reflection, could be an appropriate use of the space.