Beach litter row in Hemsby after funding cut

Bins full of rubbish on Hemsby beach

Bins full of rubbish on Hemsby beach - Credit: Archant

A row has emerged over the cleanliness at Hemsby Beach following a cut to funding.

Recent cuts to cleaning now mean that a hired cleaner will only be sent during the Easter holidays, the two bank holiday weekends in May and the six week summer holidays.

The chairman at Hemsby Parish Council stated the issue stems from borough council funding cuts.

A spokesman from the borough council admitted that changes to funding had been made, but the recent complaints result from a beach party which took place last weekend.

Local residents have complained about the beach being an eyesore, and that there is a hazard of people standing on bottles, cans and glass.

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Volunteers from Hemsby Lifeboat have already been down to clean the beach, as well as the beach's owners.

Now plans are being forged by a group of local villagers to take over the mantle.

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Daniel Hurd, from Hemsby Lifeboat, said: 'Since the funding has been cut we have had to go down and clean the beach ourselves.

'There have already been instances where people have been hurt standing on the litter.

'It is not our job to clean the beach but it is a job that needed doing.'

One local resident from the village said: 'I am totally shocked at how dirty the beach is at Hemsby.

'It is sad to see all the litter everywhere, dirty nappies, cans, over filled bins. 'I think the beach could do with more bins and for the council to come clean it up, it makes Hemsby look run down and awful.'

Meanwhile another resident said her daughter nearly stood on a shard of glass.

Hemsby Beach is a private beach owned by the Watling Trust in which Hemsby Parish Council sets the cleaning specification and manages the operation.

Hemsby Parish Council chairman Keith Kyricacou said: 'In the past we received £10,000 from the borough council which we would put towards beach cleaning.

'However, due to budget cuts there this year we only received £4,300.

'Obviously the parish council's view is that we want the beach kept clean.

'Our Beach Road is our biggest asset. But however this has been affected by the borough council having to cut back on funding.'

A spokesman from Great Yarmouth Borough Council said: 'Previously, Hemsby Parish Council was granted £10,500 under the Concurrent Function Grant scheme to clean Hemsby Beach.

'However, it was realised in a review of the grants that cleaning a private beach, such as Hemsby, is not a service the borough council would cover if it happened to be in a non-parished area.

'Following discussions with Hemsby Parish Council, the parish council instead requested £5,000 for beach cleaning and this is what was paid for 2016/17.

'The recent complaints result from a beach party at Hemsby. The borough council would like to remind people who use any beaches – whether private or council-owned – that there is no excuse not to take their waste with them and put it responsibly into a bin – either at home or into a public bin.

'There are about 20 public litter bins in the Hemsby area alone. Littering is an offence and anyone caught could be fined.'

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