Posts Tagged ‘Sandpipers Hotel’

Freshwater Bay Harbour Meeting Video

ISLE of Wight surfers came out in force to give an emphatic ‘no’ to plans to build a harbour at Freshwater Bay.
Around 150 people, many of them surfers, packed into Sandpipers Hotel to discuss the harbour suggestion put forward by former commercial fisherman and lifeboat crewman, Dick Downes, as a means to provide shelter for local boats, protect the bay from coastal erosion and make it easier to launch the lifeboat in rough conditions.
But the opinion from those who attended Sunday’s public meeting, chaired by Isle of Wight Council member George Cameron, was strongly against the idea.
Surfers Against Sewerage (SAS) said building a harbour wall would destroy one of the Island’s best waves.
Matt Harwood, chairman of the Isle of Wight Surf Club, said after the meeting: “There was a unanimous feeling that it wouldn’t go ahead, which is really positive.”


Harbour proposal – A report from the Meeting.

A Harbour at Freshwater Bay? by Oliver Harvey

[Al Reed at Freshwater Bay last winter]

It was standing room only, with 200+ people filling the function room at the public meeting held Sunday 25th September at The Sandpipers Hotel , to discuss a proposal for a harbour at Freshwater Bay.

The meeting called by Mr.Dick Downes, an Atherfield resident and fisherman, was to determine initial feelings towards the proposal. (details of his proposal can be seen below)

The Freshwater town counciller Mr.George Cameron conducted the meeting with Mr.Downes.

The councillor, (who confessed he was in favour of the proposal ) kept the room, which was at times a little rowdy, in-order and tried to hear everyone’s opinion fairly – but not before a show of hands requested by one attendee at the start of the meeting, quickly established the rooms overwhelming objection.

Objections came from Freshwater residents, holiday home owners, fisherman, local businesses & surfers alike.

They included:

The loss of a facility used by a multitude of people for the use of a few
The visual impact to an area of outstanding beauty
A harbour would mean stagnant water and strong smell like seen at Ventnor
The proposed harbour wall height would not be sufficient to offer any protection in big swells – one that would offer protection would have to be 15ft tall.
The complete loss of a surfing wave – touted as one of the best on the south coast of the UK

Those in favour were few and far between, with the only reason given for support was, it would help the launching the Lifeboat boat.

Mr.Downes heard and responded to most points taken in a considered & good natured way and even on some points of objection, he concurred.

If the meeting was obtain opinion from the local residents and to determine, if the proposal should move forward – a vote for this was demanded from the audience.

With approx 95% of the room in opposition –the audience felt another meeting is not needed in the future and the proposal should be forgotten about.

At the end of the meeting Mr.Downes was presented a photograph of Freshwater Bay (taken by local resident & photographer, Paul Blackley) to remind him of its inherent beauty and the fact it is area of natural outstanding beauty.


An End to Surfing at Freshwater Bay?

A Freshwater Bay Harbour?

A few years ago, there was a storm that was not very well forecast, leading to some boats in Freshwater Bay sinking at their moorings.
I thought then that with two natural arms across the entrance of the bay, with the channel deepened for the salvage of the “Carl”, it would be relatively easy to create a small harbour here.
When researching the history of this, I was surprised to learn that about 50 (?) years ago, the Council offered the locals a choice of a breakwater to protect the road, or,….. a harbour! I find it difficult to believe how the choice was made, or even if the story was true, but I have been told that at least one local has a copy of the plan for the proposed harbour?
I think there is a case for a harbour to be built today.
The advantages as I see it would be as follows………………………..
1. Shelter for local boats
2. Would provide protection for the Albion Hotel
3. Make launching the Lifeboat a lot easier in rough conditions
4. Provide a “Harbour of Refuge” for small boats caught out in storms that would make the Needles Channel dangerous
5. The West Wight economy is pretty dire. Building the Harbour (which would be carried out in the winter “off Season” period
6. Also, when built, there would be employment opportunities for small fishing and pleasure boats, a couple of passenger launches doing trips to the Needles, and other marine activities
7. Increased activity in the area, with a busy harbour, would draw more tourists to the area, adding to the income of pubs, hotels, etc…
The only downside I see would be the loss of the Western arm of the current bay toi surfers, who use it occasionally.
Provided the two arms of the harbour wall have a low enough profile, it should not spoil the view.
While I am sure a government and/or EU grant could be found toward the cost, (which will be substantial), I think it would be nice if it was built by the Isle of Wight locals, rather than a big firm that would cream off the profits rather than keep it in local hands.
What we don’t want is a cock up like the Ventnor harbour, which, for its size, and what it cost, to my mind was a complete waste of money!
There will be a meeting held in the Sandpipers Hotel on Sunday 25th at 7pm to see if there is enough interest locally to take this forward.

By (Dick Downes….phone 740712)


A Great Day and Night

What a day Saturday the 9th of October turned out to be. The swell started to grow from only a couple of foot first thing to an epic swell that saw Compton, Freshwater Bay and The Pearl all fireing. I checked Compton early and a few of you were either in or going in and it was about 2 – 3ft and building. The wind looked a little strong, making the waves hard to catch but as the swell grew it got better and better. I knew I was only going to get one go at getting a few waves so opted to come back in a couple of hours in hope my timing would pay off. Will still alot of things to finalise for the movie night I did about 15mins filming and the shot off to try and get as much done as possible in 2 hours.

While I was away my phone didn’t stop. I had messages saying nearly every break from Freshwater Bay right round to Sandown were breaking. When I came past Freshwater Bay there was too much water and I couldn’t wait any longer. At Compton I met up with Andy Haworth (Devon Lanes and Longboards) who was already on the cliff top filming (Can’t wait to see the footage Andy). After quick introductions he exclaimed that in all his times on the Island he had never seen Compton like that. While talking a set came through and I hadn’t seen anything like that at Compton for a very very long time. I then ran back to my car to get changed and get in. With only about 15 – 20 people in the water it was perfect, I managed to get a couple of the big set waves right to the beach. When I wasn’t catching waves it was just great to watch some of you guys getting some great waves and the standard of surfing on the Island is very high. I don’t know all of you, but being out there on Saturday really showed that all those days surfing in small wind chop, onshores and just getting in when there was any wave has produced some excellent surfers on the Island.

I only had a short time at the beach and only managed to photograph Compton for about an hour. If any of you have any good photographs of anywhere on Saturday please send them in to us and we’ll put up a gallery of all your shots. I have seen some great shots of The Pearl and Freshwater Bay on Facebook so send them to us too.

Havig such a great swell during the day it couldn’t have been any better for the Movie night. With everyone buzzing from the waves earlier in the day the Sandpipers was soon full to the brim and a wall of noise as everyone talked about the waves. We started the evening with ‘Devon Lanes and Longboards’ by Andy Haworth (If you are interested in buying Andy’s movie go to his website here Devon Lanes and Longboards ). This was followed by a great movie by Sid Pitman ‘Surf Rats’. We also had Strat Cat Productions who very kindly set up a screen and played movies in the Sandpipers big hall all night from ‘Brown Water’ by Sid, ‘Isle of Wight Surf Club’ by Annie Macpherson and Andy Haworths footage from the day. A big thanks to Mark, Nigel and the boys for helping making it a great night. The evning was to finish with ‘Fusion’ by Ross Johns and you can also buy his movie at surfclips.co.uk. At this point I think most of the Ale in the bar had gone and people still wanted more, so by popular request we put on Bert’s ‘Wight Water’. We went on playing movies well into the early hours and raised over £100 for the Freshwater Lifeboat. Many thanks to all who came and especially Jason, Andy, Ross, Annie, Sid, Bert, Al, The Sandpipers Hotel, the West Wight Landscape Partnership and all who helped to make the evening a great success (Apologies if I forgot anyone).

If anyone took any photos during the Surf Movie Evening we would love to put a few on here too, so send them in to paul@wightsurfhistory.co.uk


Surf Movie Night

Surf Movie Night featuring ‘Devon Lanes and Longboards’ by Andy Haworth. The film was born out of the love of surfing and an appreciation of North Devon, its waves, its people and its places. Devon Lanes and Longboards features many of the UK’s top Longboarders surfing at various beaches around the North Devon area. Starring local surfers including Ben Haworth, Ashley Braunton, Phil Hill and many more. It also features other top Longboarders such as Ben Skinner, Elliot Dudley, James Parry and Adam Griffiths.

The motivation to complete and publish the film was stimulated by the awful news Andy’s sister was diagnosed with secondary cancers in April 2009. Andy wanted to show her his love and support by making and dedicating this film to her fight against cancer and to donate all the profits from the film to a charity of her choosing.

If you enjoy watching the movie on Saturday why don’t you buy a copy and in doing so support a fantastic cause.

http://www.born2surf.info/born2surf/Devon_Lanes_and_Longboards,_surf_film_by_Andy_Haworth_-_longboard_surfing.html

Another movie on show is Fusion a film about surfing around the beautiful, diverse and wave-rich coastline of Great Britain, featuring the country’s best surfers at the best spots when they’re at their best, from the beach breaks of Cornwall to the heaving slabs of Caithness.

If you appreciate good surfing and relate to the extremes that make the British surf scene truly unique then you’ll certainly enjoy this film.

You can also buy this movie at http://surfclips.co.uk/

You will also have the opportunity of watching classic IOW Surf Club movies by Annie Macpherson, Sid Pitman, Bert, Alan Reed and others….


Surf’s Up with IW History on Film

Sidney Pitman

‘Surf’s Up with IW History on Film’ by The Isle of Wight County Press


Surf Movie Night

Come and join us for an evening of old and new Surf Movies at Sandpipers Hotel, Freshwater Bay, Isle of Wight.

7.30pm Saturday October 9th 2010.

We have a couple of 2010 UK surf movies ‘Fusion’ and ‘Devon Lanes and Longboards’ and will also be featuring the Isle of Wight Surf Club movie made in the very early 1970’s by Annie Macpherson as well as a couple of movies made by Sid Pitman during the 70’s too.

Bring along your own surf movies as we will have a mobile Cinema outside where we aim to be able so show anything that you may have. We will be able to show standard 8 and super 8 sound, VHS (full size and mini), Full and mini DV tape, and DVD disks.