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Deceiving the public

Labour and Tory councillors are not being straight with residents about the future of Hoylake Beach

Gail Jenkinson and Jane Turner at Hoylake Beach

Labour and Conservative councillors have voted to clear a large part of Hoylake Beach in the full knowledge that the regulator Natural England will never grant approval for their proposals. In so doing they are misleading the public as well as ignoring the damage their plans would inflict on the local environment, the development of natural flood defences and the costly impacts of wind-blown sand for the council and the local community.

Green Party campaigner for Hoylake, Jane Turner, said, “Before the Environment Committee vote on April 15th Natural England made it crystal clear that they could not support the clearance of three hectares of the beach. Nevertheless, councillors voted by majority to do just that. What we needed was a clear proposal based on the needs of the local RNLI with assent from Natural England. Instead, some councillors have engaged in wishful thinking and are raising expectations amongst the public that cannot be met.”

Cllr Jason Walsh voted against the proposals and said, “Natural England and others have found “some of the rarest species on earth on these shores,” adding, “Our landscape evolves over time and what is happening at Hoylake is simply part of that evolution. I believe trying to recover an amenity beach at the site of the current green beach is picking a fight with nature and I believe it is a costly fight that we are likely to lose. “

Green councillors on the committee tabled alternative proposals that would:

  • Provide an amenity beach accessible to all.
  • Protect the emerging sand dunes that provide vital, natural flood defences and will greatly reduce the cost of dealing with wind-blown sand on Hoylake promenade.
  • Provide safe and secure routes for RNLI operations.

Cllr Gail Jenkinson is the Green Party candidate for Wirral West MP. She says, “With sea levels rising and weather patterns changing, it makes absolutely no sense to undermine the natural flood protection that has proved its worth in recent storms. Instead of being honest with people and supporting access with paths to the new amenity beach, Labour and the Tories are fighting nature, which is going to keep costing money every year, and this is on top of the £250,000 of Council tax-payers money they have already wasted. Green Party proposals would be much cheaper and better for people and the planet.