“We need to show Sidmouth in its best light.”

“If people find our beach covered in rubbish they won’t come back. If they experience antisocial behaviour until late in the night, they won’t come back.”

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A lot of seaside resorts have got problems with anti-social behaviour:

Devon beach mass fights break out for second night – BBC News

Southend ‘could face local lockdown’ if rule flouting continues | Echo

England goes to the beach and parties like there’s no pandemic – WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Coronavirus: thousands descend on British beach, sparking emergency incident | South China Morning Post

So too has Sidmouth…

Litter on the beach – Vision Group for Sidmouth

And unfortunately, it hasn’t got any better over the sunny weekend:

Residents ‘appalled’ over behaviour at Sidmouth beach – Devon Live

With calls for urgent action to be taken:

“I am therefore asking East Devon to see if bylaws can be fast tracked to prevent drinking and use of loud beat box radios along with a dedicated area being introduced for BBQ’s” said Cllr Hughes. “As we come out of lock down it’s important we do everything we can to kick start the local economy and with hotels reopening later this week we need to show Sidmouth in its best light. Unfortunately the type of recent behaviour does nothing for our image.”

‘Unruly behaviour’ on Sidmouth’s Clifton Beach – Councillor calls for new bylaws | sidmouth.nub.news

And volunteers are refusing to do any more beach cleans for the time being:

Sidmouth Plastic Warriors say the town’s economy depends on tourism, and the beaches are a major attraction for visitors.

“If people find our beach covered in rubbish they won’t come back. If they experience antisocial behaviour until late in the night, they won’t come back. Businesses will close because of the effects of easing lockdown, at a time where they need all the help we can give. It will affect all, if the worst happens and many of the town’s residents find themselves out of work.

“Sidmouth Plastic Warriors was set up to help highlight marine waste, microplastics, harm to marine wildlife and changing behaviour, through doing regular beach cleans and school talks, and as a means of uniting those of us who care… But I repeat it is not our job or desire to just clean up after people.”

During the break from cleaning, the group will liaise with community groups, sports teams, pubs, restaurants and businesses, to explore solutions to the problem of beach waste. It will then hold a major beach cleaning session over the weekend of July 18 and 19.

Sidmouth beach cleaners down tools in disgust at seashore litter | Sidmouth Herald

Besides, it’s not a good time to be on the beach:

Sidmouth beachgoers were just metres away from thundering cliff collapse – Devon Live

And it’s certaintly not a good idea to be sitting packed on the beach:

Covid-19: will there be a second spike in Devon? | Sidmouth Herald

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Looking beyond the current situation, perhaps we need to rethink the tourist industry – and look at ‘sustainable/responsible tourism’:

Looking to a new kind of tourism after the corornavirus – Vision Group for Sidmouth

And perhaps we also need to be diversifying from an over-dependence on the badly-paid, insecure hospitality industry:

Lighthouse Sidmouth Workhub to reopen – Vision Group for Sidmouth

   
© Vision Group for Sidmouth 2005-2020