Businessman’s delight at Branscombe rock armour

PUBLISHED: 16:23 11 March 2017

Work being done in front of the chalets on the west end of Branscombe beach. Photo by Terry Ife. Ref shb 1926-08-14TI To order your copy of this photograph go to www.sidmouthherald.co.uk and click on myphotos24

Work being done in front of the chalets on the west end of Branscombe beach. Photo by Terry Ife. Ref shb 1926-08-14TI To order your copy of this photograph go to www.sidmouthherald.co.uk and click on myphotos24

Archant

A Branscombe businessman has spoken of his delight in securing planning permission to reinforce rock armour on the village’s beach.

The pathway in 2017 down to the chalets on the west end of Branscombe beach, where the rock armour will be reinforced.The pathway in 2017 down to the chalets on the west end of Branscombe beach, where the rock armour will be reinforced.

Sea Shanty Holiday Park owner Anthony Sellick was given the green light by East Devon District Council (EDDC) to install a further 200 metres of rock armour along the west side of the beach and to reinforce and reinstate the storm-damaged roadway serving the chalets.

He has been trying to patch up the current rock armour since the village was hit by heavy storms in 2014.

Mr Sellick said: “We are delighted that we have been able to reinforce the rock armour.

“We have been going hard to get this for the last two years.”

His previous application to install defences was refused in April 2016 by EDDC’S development management committee by seven votes to six. More than 2,250 people had signed a petition in support of the scheme.

A revised application was approved by council officers under delegated powers last month.

Mr Sellick said: “There are people letting them [the chalets] this week. Each family would be spending £500 in the local economy during their weekly stay - that’s money Branscombe cannot afford to lose.

“We cannot afford to lose any accommodation in East Devon. We should be promoting it.”

After feedback from Natural England, Mr Sellick reduced the proposed period in which the temporary defences will be be in place from 25 years to 10. He acknowledged the work may not deliver a ‘forever solution’, adding: “At the end of 10 years we will have to see what happens. If there have been no adverse effects, which I’m sure there won’t be, I see no reason the planning cannot be extended for 10 years.”

Mr Sellick hopes three weeks of work can take place in late November, and again in November 2018.

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