Sidmouth beach hut barricading gets bashed

Sun bathers’ anger - but contractors just doing job

SUN bathers bashed the district council for barricading off Jacob’s Ladder beach huts as Sidmouth sizzled in an unseasonal October scorcher on Monday.

But the authority said its contractors were just doing their job – and customers were allowed an extra two days grace due to the good weather.

A rental period for huts ends on September 30 every year, but users said they felt “cheated” when they found the facilities fenced off this week.

Sylvia Feast, 80, of Eagle Hurst, said on Monday: “There’s been a lot of people up in arms. Some had belongings barricaded in.

“I’ve had a hut for 15 years and I’ve never seen anything like it. It seems so insensitive.”

Joy Goodrum, 85, of Western Court, added: “We feel a bit cheated really.”

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Beach-goer John Govier branded the move “disgusting”.

“To barricade up the huts in a town full of visitors is completely nonsensical,” he said.

A district council spokesman said the rental period for huts, whether hired individually or in a block by a concessionaire, ends on September 30 every year so steps can be taken to protect them from possible winter storm damage.

He added, those who rented huts were given a month’s notice and allowed two days’ extra grace to vacate them and to remove belongings. “There should be no excuse for failing to vacate the huts by Monday to enable our contractors to do their job,” he said.

“Anyone wishing to recover personal items from a hut should contact us. So far, no-one has.”