Selsey residents take action against uncleared beach walkway

Selsey residents clearing the stones
Selsey residents clearing the stones
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Selsey residents have joined forces to clear a beach walkway after feeling ‘let down’ by the council.

A band of volunteers have been hard at work clearing stones off the East Beach walkway so residents and visitors have a safe path to walk on.

Resident and volunteer, Philip Waller, said: “I lost count of the sheer number of people expressing their gratitude to me and the other volunteers for clearing the stones on Saturday (April 9), and the general consensus from people I have spoken to have said “the council should be doing it”.

“But what made it worse was the sight of two council workmen walking along the beach on the premise of picking up litter from the beach walkway area, who then sat down after collecting a small amount of litter and watched me do their job for them.”

Mr Waller added: “I realise that the council has undertaken to clear the stones in the next one or two weeks (by April 21), but I note that nothing has been done for a whole week.

“The efforts of the few do not negate the need – all we have done is cut a small access through the tonnes of stones.”

Mr Waller and other Selsey residents have since continued to clear the beach walkway, even in poor weather conditions.

Selsey Town Council clerk, Becky White, said: “Although the sea wall provides an enjoyable amenity for our residents and visitors, it’s purpose is as a sea defence and it is managed as such by Chichester District Council, who undertake schedule clearances to shift the accumulated shingle back on to the beach.

“With deeply unfortunate timing, the Spring clearance took place in the week before Storm Katie and it seemed that was it for the year.”

After the town council were contacted by a resident and the chairman of council, Clle Mike Beal, about the walkway they then contacted district councillor for Selsey and cabinet member for the environment, Cllr Roger Barrow, to ask what could be done.

Ms White added: “Cllr Barrow was also aware of the problem from resident feedback and has confirmed that he has now been able to arrange with the Foreshores department at CDC for an additional unscheduled clearance to take place.

“As you can imagine, as this is unscheduled an exact date could not be given but we were advised this would be in the next fortnight.

“In the meantime, some residents have taken action themselves and worked together to make the wall passable for others – a great example of community spirit.”