Illegal Beach Campers To Be Woken Up Every Hour Until They Leave
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Overnight campers on UK beaches may find themselves re-thinking the decision when they get woken up every hour by beach patrol staff.
Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole (BCP) Council has said that anyone thinking of camping on the beach can expect an ‘uncomfortable night's sleep’ with the local authority adding that the tactic had put off dozens of campers over the last couple of weeks.
However, those found to be camping illegally and still refusing to move on will then face prosecution, as well as a £1,000 fine.
Talking to the Local Democracy Reporting Service, Councillor May Haines said the hourly wake up calls had been successful so far.
“[The wake ups] were carried out to 12 groups of campers in Southbourne and they left as a result of this, and nine more were dealt with this weekend,” she said.
She added that overnight camping on the beaches is complicated local issue, but that the council have a plan that seems to be working.
Over the recent weeks of good weather, thousands of tourists have have flocked to the south coast resorts, with BCP Council saying that over 400,000 people visited the area last Saturday and Sunday (June 12th and 13th) alone.
The authority issued more than 800 parking tickets across Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole, as hundreds of cars were left parked illegally on verges, pavements and double yellow lines, exacerbating traffic problems and causing significant disruption to local residents.
Following the easing of the first national lockdown in June last year BCP council was forced to declare a major incident as thousands of people packed onto Bournemouth Beach stretching local services to ‘the absolute hilt’.
In order to try and avoid similar scenes this summer, a whole raft of new measures have been introduced including Covid marshals, drones to monitor crowds, and a park-and-ride scheme to try and prepare for the surge in visitor numbers.
As well as these measures, an app that was used last year to show beachgoers which areas are crowded, has now been upgraded to include parking and toilet information.
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