Humford Dam remains a rare memento of Bedlington’s industrial past.
It adds unique character to a section of the river which has nurtured a diverse natural habitat for well over a century.
Demolition would sweep away history and kill diversity.
The site would take years to recover from the scars of unnecessary destruction, and the taxpayer would pay, no matter how the funds are conjured.
The Environment Agency proposes this extreme course of action in the name of fish and eel migration, but Northumberland County Council, as owner, is responsible for ensuring the existing passes work.
Demolition would absolve the county council and provide a vanity project for the Environment Agency and its partners.
The agency could solve fish migration at a fraction of the cost and upheaval by addressing the known failings of the existing fish pass and providing a more robust eel pass, while conserving nature and history.
It could even spend some of the savings on securing the site and promoting its heritage and natural history.
If the Environment Agency respects public opinion, it will choose common sense.
To support the petition online, enter change.org/p/peter-kerr-northumberlandriverstrust and click the link.