ARGUS COMMENT…Baths should be protected (July 2007)

In this day and age it is a sad inevitability that any building left unoccupied will eventually be targeted by the criminal fraternity.

Yesterday Maindee baths became the target of a suspected arson attack not once but twice in the same day.

The art deco building, with its glorious interior, closed 18 months ago.

Since then, our letters page has seen a constant stream of correspondence suggesting alternative uses for the site or warning that it could be the target for vandals.

We don’t know what security measures were in place – if any – but we hope that if CCTV was fitted then it captured those responsible.

There will be many quick to blame Newport Council today for what will be seen as a lack of care surrounding Maindee baths.

But let’s not be too quick to judge because these days nothing seems to deter those hell-bent on causing damage and destruction.

One only has to take a look at the city’s Lysaghts Institute, which is not council owned, to see what these criminals are capable of.

This glorious building has all but had its roof removed in the space of a few short months.

We understand that a private developer is interested in the Maindee building although no decision has yet been made on its future.

The quicker it is put back into use the better.

At least a permanent presence in the building will go some way to deterring these idiots from such wanton destruction.

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