‘Slipways should be included in tidal defence scheme’

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CAMPAIGNERS are urging the Environment Agency to help build a new slipway as the council recommends Adur Recreation Ground as an ideal location.

In a recent report by West Sussex County Council (WSCC), it was proposed that three locations in Shoreham were appropriate to introduce new slipways, including Ferry Road, where an ancient slipway exists.

This follows a long campaign from The Shoreham Slipways Group (SSG), a team of residents who believe new slipways will bring more tourism to the coastal town.

Chairman of SSG, Brendan Whelan, welcomed the report and said this was the latest of many reports issued by Adur District Council, WSCC and the Environment Agency confirming that Shoreham lacked usable public slipways.

Mr Whelan said: “Not only are slipways useful for family boat owners, anglers, divers and water skiers, but they also encourage local trade and tourism. Facilities will also encourage non-boating people to visit.

“After living in and around Shoreham for 43 years, I am amazed that a town with a rich nautical tradition has lost so many of its public places to launch.”

In a bid to build a slipway at the north east corner of Adur Recreation Ground, the SSG is urging the agency to include the slipway as part of its Tidal Walls Scheme.

Mr Whelan continued: “If the Environment Agency is able to include the slipway in their Adur Tidal Walls project – planned for August tendering – then a third of the building costs will be saved, disruption kept to a minimum and the much needed slipway provided more quickly.”

There will be a Tidal Walls Scheme exhibition at the Adur Outdoor Activity Centre, between 4pm and 8pm, next Tuesday.

“I urge everyone who believes that Shoreham needs a new usable slipway to visit the exhibition,” added Mr Whelan.

Also, adjacent to the car park in Ferry Road there is an ancient slipway still used by fishermen. The SSG believe this facility should be retained and enhanced as part of the changes to the Tidal Walls and car park.

Mr Whelan said: “This is a site where it would be in the public interest if the various officials worked together.”

The Environment Agency exhibition covering the Ferry Road area will be held on Monday, February 16, at The Church of the Good Shepherd, from 5pm to 9pm.

Soldier’s Point, at the eastern end of Shoreham Beach, was also recommended by the county council as a possible slipway location.