New plan for Camber

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The police are forced to seal off Camber in June

A new multi-agency plan to help manage issues caused by thousands of day-trippers heading to Camber Sands in warm weather is to be drawn up.

A meeting of partners involved in the management of Camber and the surrounding area was called after huge numbers of people headed to the beach during last week’s heatwave.

While many systems are in place to deal with the issues created by the number of visitors, it was agreed that plans for warm days at Camber need to mirror those put in place for large crowd events.

Local MP Sally-Ann Hart, who chaired the meetings said: “Warm weather can see as many as 25,000 people visiting the beach, which is served by a single public road and three car parks. This puts a huge strain on the road network, has a detrimental impact on those living locally, and is a drain on resources of local authorities and emergency services.

Sally-Ann Hart

“The situation on Thursday [last] week led to Sussex Police taking emergency action to close the road and, while this went some way to alleviating the problem on Camber Road, it moved the problem on to other areas like Rye, Winchelsea Beach and Pett Level.  It is clear that this would not be a long-term solution.”

She added: “At today’s meeting, we agreed to put in place a plan that will ensure we can keep Camber open for business whilst reducing traffic levels, focussing on beach safety and ensuring residents are treated with respect and decency.”

Rother District Council, Sussex Police, East Sussex County Council and Camber Parish Council will work together to discuss what roles each can play in a strategic plan to cope with visitors during warm weather.

As well as the management of traffic and car parking, the plan will include beach safety, litter problems, antisocial behaviour and water safety, and how the closure of car parks, when full, can be communicated.

“Authorities already doing a great deal”

Sally-Ann added: “Authorities are already doing a great deal of work to manage the numbers we are seeing at Camber Sands, but this new plan will create the opportunity to prioritise certain individuals in roles that will help alleviate some of the problems we have been seeing in recent weeks.

“There are no quick wins here, but we continue to work in a united and concerted effort to ensure that the scenes of the last few days are behind us. With a new strategy, and a tangible work on the ground we stand a better change of overcoming these problems.”

Source: Press release from Sally-Ann Hart

Image Credits: Nick Forman , UK Parliament https://members.parliament.uk/member/4842/portrait.

6 COMMENTS

  1. How can any of the above outcomes of the meeting stop the utter chaos we experienced last week? No mention of prevention of roadside parking that effectively caused a extensive bottleneck a along the road. Cars abandoned with total disregard for others plus parking on junction corners, across driveways and access roads to businesses. If that is all this ‘strategic’ meeting could come up with then I don’t think we are getting value for money.

    • Civil Parking Enforcement is being introduced in Camber and across Rother. It’s been delayed by the pandemic. When in force the yellow lines will be properly enforced by penalties. Should be a great improvement.

  2. What really compounds these issues is that in the U.K. large lorries that stock supermarkets, etc, operate in the daytime. Our small lanes and roads were not made for large lorries. In New York, Tokyo and many other overseas cities, large delivery lorries transport and deliver goods in the early hours of the morning when roads are virtually empty. Plus, large lorries are a huge danger to cyclists. That danger could be removed instantly. Lately I’ve noticed the HUGE Jempsons lorries turning onto Rye Hill from Fishmarket Road. It’s absolutely terrifying for pedestrians. Compound that with other traffic trying to get to Camber or elsewhere. I appreciate I’m going off topic a bit here, but removing certain forms of transportation might make other traffic move more smoothly.

  3. My main concern is restricting the number of people on the beaches at the moment in view of the virus! This in itself would then reduce the amount of traffic coming into the area. I know some people have no outside space at home but to travel miles to get to Camber is not appropriate behaviour! The virus is not going away and it’s astonishing that with all the publicity and lock down etc people are not taking the situation seriously!

  4. Firstly I must say we have tried “ Multi Agency “ years ago, more than once I believe, sounds good but didn’t make any difference. May I ask what are the systems that are in place ??? Camber has two ways in so not a single public road ! Shutting the road at Camber turn-off is too late….need to advise drivers on all roads to Camber much much earlier with the neon signs….this would hopefully prevent gridlock in Rye and surrounding areas. Car park communication….surely not that difficult with modern technology? Councillor Mier….as far as I’m aware the double yellows in Camber have NEVER been inforced ? The fine needs to be increased greatly otherwise they just think that’s a cheap price to pay for a day at the beach…. Camber is a lovely place to live, I class myself as very lucky, I love seeing all the visitors but I think everyone will agree something HAS to be done about the parking…..

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