Swanage holidaymakers complain over 'racially offensive' road name

Swanage holidaymakers complain over ‘racially offensive’ highway title


A STREET title in Swanage might be modified after a holidaying household complained that it was racially insensitive.

Dorset County Council have been contacted by a household who discovered Darkie Lane in Ulwell, close to Ulwell Vacation Park, to be an “offensive” highway title.

Historic texts supplied by Swanage City Council reveal that the highway was initially known as merely Darkish Lane attributable to it being ‘darkish and shaded’.

The council now has to determine whether or not to maintain the title ‘Darkie’ or change it to ‘Darkish Lane’ to protect the historic context.

Having liaised with the household, councillor Peter Wharf, cupboard member for company growth and alter at Dorset Council, wrote a letter to Swanage City Council.

It mentioned: “A household holidaying in Swanage have written to precise their concern to search out their lodging on a road utilizing a reputation that they discovered offensive and which they felt may very simply trigger offence to others given our nationwide historical past.

“The historic context for the title is purportedly harmless, referring to the lane being ‘darkish’ and ‘shaded’ – although this doesn’t keep away from the potential for inflicting offence, notably for guests to the world who will possible be unaware of this context.

“Dorset Council’s Road Naming and Numbering Coverage is obvious that when naming new developments/streets it won’t be acceptable to make use of a reputation that “may trigger offence or be thought of discriminatory notably in regard to age, incapacity, race and ethnicity, religion and perception, sexual orientation, gender and intercourse.

“While the coverage doesn’t account for the circumstances of this particular case, the underlying rules relating to the naming of streets are that they be inclusive given the range of our communities and customer populations.”

Cllr Wharf then prompt that the council has three choices:

  • Do nothing – leaving ‘Darkie Lane’ because the official title.
  • Change the title to ‘Darkish Lane’ to protect the historic context, while minimising the potential for offence.
  • Different – have you ever another suggestion?

Nevertheless, some within the space have described the matter as “political correctness gone mad”. 

A Swanage City Council spokesperson mentioned: “This matter was referred to [us] following a grievance acquired by Dorset Council and it was mentioned on the Planning and Session Committee Assembly held on Monday, October 4.

“On the assembly, city councillors voted in favour of recommending to Dorset Council that consideration ought to be given to the renaming of Darkie Lane to Darkish Lane, which might protect the historic context, while minimising the potential for offence.”

It was not talked about on the assembly why the highway title was modified after the Thirties.

The Bolton News: Darkie Lane in Ulwell, near Swanage. Picture: Max Willcock/BNPS
Darkie Lane in Ulwell, close to Swanage. Image: Max Willcock/BNPS

Mike Whitwam, the one member to oppose the choice, mentioned he objected to political correctness for the sake of it.

He mentioned: “I’ve many shut black associates and the title is just not within the slightest bit prejudicial.

“I felt the choice was made purely to fulfill political correctness, which is destroying tradition on this nation.

“It has been known as Darkie Lane for a few years and no one has taken offence besides this one do-gooder who has complained to the council”.

A Dorset Council spokesperson mentioned: “We are able to affirm that Dorset Council acquired a grievance over the summer season from a vacation maker in regards to the title of Darkie Lane in Swanage, which they discovered offensive.

“In response, we regarded into the historic data of the naming of this highway (which was initially known as Darkish Lane attributable to its shaded location) and requested Swanage City councillors for his or her views.

“This problem was mentioned and we’re awaiting a proper response from Swanage following their dialogue.

“We can even seek the advice of with the residents dwelling on this highway to hunt their views on the highway naming previous to a last choice being made.”





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