SEAFORD: Joy as beach maintenance comes under the spotlight

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THE amenity value of Seaford beach will be taken into account when the Environment Agency carries out its maintenance work, much to the joy of a local campaigner.

Denton resident Jim Skinner is keen for the organisation to recognise the need to make it an attraction fit for the town as well as a robust flood defence.

Mr Skinner said, “After much persuasion and regular meetings, the Environment Agency has at last committed firmly to seriously investigate all possible options for the management of our beach.

“The EA has also made clear its intention to continue to work with the town council to evolve a maintenance regime that fully recognises the amenity value of the beach, in addition to its pivotal role as a flood defence.

“The next issue of the EA’s flood defence strategy will, for the first time, clearly lay this very important principle down in black and white.”

Mr Skinner, who is keen to see the area accessible to all, set up a 2,500-signature petition which calls for a serious review of the existing maintenance of Seaford beach.

A spokesman for the Environment Agency said, “The Environment Agency has worked with local people to develop and explore options for managing flood and erosion risk at Seaford.

“Local people have stressed the importance of the amenity value of the beach, and this has been taken into account in assessing the options.

“The strategy will recommend continuing the current practice of beach maintenance as the most cost effective way to manage coastal flood and erosion risk to approximately 650 properties in Seaford. We will continue to work with and listen to local people, and maximise the amenity value of the beach where it does not conflict with its flood and erosion risk management function.”

Mr Skinner’s petition is in the Old Plough in Church Street for anyone who wishes to sign it.