Club cites safety concerns
A yacht club has ‘‘serious’’ health and safety concerns over plans to fix erosion issues at a popular beach site in Marlborough.
The Marlborough District Council wants to reclaim up to 4 metres of Shelly Beach, in Picton, using hard fill and soil, after 50 years of the area being eaten away by the sea.
It lodged a resource consent earlier this year to reclaim more grass area and to also put down a wall of large, flat rocks to protect the beach from wave erosion.
But the Queen Charlotte Yacht Club said in a submission that while the club generally supported the application, it thought a lack of distinction between the beach and club could cause people to wander into hazardous areas. ‘‘The club is concerned for the health and safety of the general public ... straying into an area where power boats and yachts are being launched and retrieved,’’ it said.
Vessels went to and from the club’s launching ramp. ‘‘As the ramp is on the [club] lease, it is under the [club] risk management plan, [so] the club has serious concerns in the area of public safety,’’ the club said.
The concrete safety wall separating the public beach area and the club area was removed late last year to try to slow erosion south of the club’s launching ramp.
Club secretary Ian Gardiner said the club wanted to ensure access to the beach was as safe as possible. ‘‘We want to make sure little Johnny with his starfish, wanting to show mum, doesn’t run into danger when we’re trying to back up a boat at our launching ramp,’’ Gardiner said.
The club also had concerns it would be impossible for smaller craft to access the water from the grassed area if top soil washed off the new rock sea wall. ‘‘The consent application ... highlights the requirement for easy access for small craft coming from the grassed area to the beach to launch,’’ the submission said.
The area was highly valued by