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North Yorks Enquirer

SBC & Parkol Slam Gazette Article

March 20, 2014 Letters

A Letter to the Editor from Bob TURNER, commenting on the SBC/Parkol Marine response to the Whitby Gazette coverage of the Eskside Wharf dispute.


Dear Mr Editor,

I am sure many of your readers will have already picked sides in the SBC-versus-Parkol shenanigans.

Personally, I doubt that this latest demonstration of apparent solidarity will change any opinions.

Scarborough Borough Council and Parkol Marine have issued a joint press statement (see below) in response to an article published in the Whitby Gazette on 7th March 2014, which was considered “inappropriate”, “sensationalist” and “irresponsible”. It is unclear whether or not either of the aggrieved parties was offered the customary “right to reply” ahead of publication. It is not known whether or not SBC’s Director of Legal & Democratic Services Lisa Dixon has written to the Whitby Gazette’s internet service provider demanding “termination” of the local rag’s website.

Media Release

13 March 2014

Council and Parkol express frustration with Eskside Wharf article

Whitby boatbuilding company, Parkol Marine Engineering and Scarborough Borough Council have joined forces to express their disappointment and frustration with an article about the town’s Eskside Wharf, which was featured in the Whitby Gazette on Friday 7 March.

While neither the council nor Parkol is disputing the fact that there is a corrosion problem on Eskside Wharf that requires attention, both organisations have branded the article inappropriate for the sensationalist way it was portrayed, which has served to cast huge doubt over the future of both Parkol’s business and the viability of Eskside Wharf.

Jim Morrison, the owner of Parkol Marine Engineering expressed his anger at the article, which he says has caused unnecessary concern amongst his workforce:

  • “When my staff see an article like that, it firstly takes them by surprise and then justifiably leaves them fearing for their jobs.  On top of that, references to a sinking shipbuilder and threats of closure do not do us any favours when it comes to maintaining relationships with our loyal customers and suppliers and could severely affect our ability to do business with them. To almost write off the business and the wharf when we are still in the early stages of working with the council to find a solution to the problems is totally irresponsible.”

Nick Edwards, Scarborough Borough Council Strategic Director of Business Support added:

  • “We are equally concerned about the article, which could cause far greater problems for Parkol’s ability to do business than any problems with Eskside Wharf.  We fully appreciate the value of the wharf to Parkol, Whitby and the wider area.  We want to make it absolutely clear that we are working with Parkol towards developing a solution aimed at protecting jobs and safeguarding its business for the future, one which we recognise as being hugely important to the Whitby economy.  Once our external assessments of the wharf have finished, we will be arranging a further meeting with Parkol’s management to develop a suitable solution to the problems and plan how it will be implemented.”

– ENDS –

For media enquiries contact: Gabrielle Jandzio, Communications Officer: Tel 01723 232306 or email

When the showboating is over, it will be Joe Public who picks up the tab.

Yours, etc


Bob TURNER. Saltburn. 20th March, 2014.

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