THE decline in the High Streets of many of our small country towns is well documented, and here in Fishguard we have experienced more than our fair share of closed premises and vanished amenities.
Walking from Fishguard Square to Goodwick Square it is saddening to see such iconic buildings as the Abergwaun Hotel, the Farmer’s Arms and the Rose & Crown - once focal meeting points of our community - shut and boarded up, like ghost buildings from a bygone era.
All too sadly, too many of our shops and public houses, having fallen on hard times, have fallen into subsidence with their forlorn façades acting as a grey and depressing blemish on the face of the town - with each closure of a local business slamming another nail into the coffin of the towns’ charm and character.
How refreshing it was therefore to see the resurrection and continuing success of the Hope & Anchor, under the management of Julia Evans and James Jones.
It was inspiring to see their energy and enthusiasm being thrown into breathing fresh life into one of the oldest pubs in Goodwick as they offered an occasional evening of live music, for the benefit of the community at large.
How depressing it was however to learn that, on seemingly no basis at all, a complaint had been made to the council against the occasional performance of live music.
So as to be clear, the live music that had been arranged to play last Saturday night (July 5) was an acoustic duo - a young, local Pembrokeshire girl and boy singing, accompanied by an acoustic guitar.
The evening that had been planned was not an evening with Metallica, a Nirvana concert or a live session by heavy metal band Motörhead.
Live music nights will continue at the Hope & Anchor and I would respectfully suggest that instead of acting as out-of-touch killjoys, the local authority and the “mystery complainant” could apply their zeal to stomp out anti-social behaviour to real nuisances such as vandalism and dog fouling.
I’ve no desire to see the town I love grow more and more into a tired and worn out ghost town where local businesses are forced to close.