Beach cleanliness fears over claims of redundancies

Beachlands, Hayling Island
Beachlands, Hayling Island
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon and Plaid Cymru leader Leanne Wood at the Scottish National Party conference

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THE future of a beach recognised for its high standard of maintenance could be thrown into jeopardy.

That is the concern from residents in Hayling Island after some of the service staff for Hayling Beachlands were reportedly made redundant.

According to these residents, the site has already gone downhill in their absence – and now the future of the beach’s Blue Flag status could be under threat.

Richard Coates, from Hayling Island, said: ‘I came across a few of the staff members having a leaving do in a nearby cafe – they told me that a number of them have been made redundant, despite everything they have done for us all.

‘Not only is this a disgraceful way to treat loyal hard working staff, but I am almost certain that Hayling will lose its Blue Flag status over the coming years and with it goes one of the very few reasons for visiting families wanting to spend holidays on the island.’

The staff responsible for cleaning the beach are employed by Norse South East, a company that specialises in cleaning and maintenance.

Their employment is a joint agreement with the company and Havant Borough Council.

Ward councillor for Hayling East Cllr John Perry said: ‘I have heard that two of the staff members have been made redundant.

‘The service is a joint venture between Norse South East and Havant Borough Council, and we were told that the service would be maintained with the agreement. In my opinion, it is disingenuous of the Conservatives on the council to say that these services are safe, then make staff members redundant.’

Cabinet lead for environment and neighbourhood services, Cllr Michael Wilson said: ‘I can’t say I’m surprised by Cllr Perry’s comments.

‘To be honest, it is not something that we can really comment on at this moment in time.

‘Matters such as this fall on the directors of Norse South East, so it is no longer a decision that would be made by Havant Borough Council.’

Norse South East was approached by The News but refused to comment.