Matthew Young, Foreshore Manager was in
attendance to give an update on the Seaside byelaws review and
He explained that the byelaws had not been
reviewed since 1995 and that the use of the coast had changed
significantly in that time with different water sports and
equipment becoming more widely available. There was also a perception of anti-social
behaviour, particularly in relation to jet ski use.
It was noted that the consultation would be
carried out with both residents and visitors and would include
watercraft users, swimmers, beach users and the Disability Advisory
The consultation would address four key design
proposals (inclusion of lifeguard swim areas, introduce an 8 knot
speed limit within transit lanes, introduce a direction of travel
within transit lanes and address the width of transit lanes before
making any changes to the existing byelaws.
The consultation had opened on 11 June and
would run until 1 September 2019.
The Forum commented on the proposals and
Matthew Young provided points of clarification where required;
Enforcement – the idea would be to target repeat offenders,
rather than those one-off incidents.
Staff could be used as witnesses if necessary as they are present
at launch sites and patrol. Central
Control had a direct number to foreshore staff when on duty if an
incident was reported (this was not a 24/7 service).
It was important to remember that Herne Bay is a seaside town, and
there was nothing wrong with water
sports if carried out responsibly.
It was noted that a registration scheme was in place in the Thanet
area in order to launch a jet ski, however, this was not monitored
or enforced and there were no byelaws or legislation in place so it
was difficult to compare the different sites.
Eight knots may seem fast but was the generally accepted speed in
port and harbour areas.
The Chairman reminded those present to
complete the consultation.