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Campaigner gets council to debate beach access
A WEYMOUTH mum who launched a petition urging authorities to restore access to a popular beauty spot has won enough support to get a council debate.
Clare Sutton launched a petition calling on Weymouth and Portland Borough Council to work together with Dorset County Council, landowners, businesses and the wider community in order to restore access to Sandsfoot Beach off Old Castle Road.
Access to the area, also known as Castle Cove, was previously provided by a footpath on private land and steps leading down to the beach.
The steps were removed for safety reasons in February 2013 following a landslip last year and the footpath was also declared out of bounds, leaving members of the public without access to the beauty spot.
Miss Sutton’s petition gained more than 1,700 signatures including 250 from pupils at All Saints School.
Now the issue will be debated at the full council meeting next week because under council policy it exceeds the 600-signature threshold needed for a debate.
Miss Sutton stood for the Green Party in the Weymouth West ward in last week’s local elections but the seat was held by the Conservatives.
As well as the debate at the council meeting, which will be at Weymouth Pavilion on June 5 at 7pm, Miss Sutton is also seeking a further meeting with authorities to hammer out the issues.
She said she understands works to restore access would not cost huge amounts because it is believed the path as far as the bridge is stable.
She said: “I fully understand that money is tight but we would be hugely disappointed if the council declines to have an open discussion with all interested parties and investigate all possibilities to see if a cost-effective solution can be reached.”
Weymouth and Portland Borough Council was unavailable to comment.
To support the campaign contact Clare Sutton on 01305 771180 or email email@example.com
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