Anger as Camber slipway in Portsmouth is still off limits for trailers

Boating enthusiast Kevin Turner from Fareham. Kevin and dozens of others like him can't get their boats into the water at The Camber in Old Portsmouth, because there is nowhere to park their trailers as all the spaces are taken up by Ben Ainslie Racing or reserved for KB Boats. ''Picture: Sarah Standing (151079-3713)
Boating enthusiast Kevin Turner from Fareham. Kevin and dozens of others like him can't get their boats into the water at The Camber in Old Portsmouth, because there is nowhere to park their trailers as all the spaces are taken up by Ben Ainslie Racing or reserved for KB Boats. ''Picture: Sarah Standing (151079-3713)
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A FRUSTRATED boat user is angry over the ongoing wait for slipways for those who use trailers.

Kevin Turner, from Fareham, says he is disappointed that neither the slipway at the Camber in Old Portsmouth nor the one at Eastney are accessible.

I came down last week to see they had turned it into a Ben Ainslie car park

That was despite being told that the lack of space – caused by construction work on the Ben Ainslie Racing base – would be completed by the end of this month.

Mr Turner, 52, said that while the slipway at the Camber, opposite Land Rover BAR, is still operable, there is nowhere for boat users to park their trailers while their vessels were in the water.

He said the area, known as Trimmers Court, used to be able to cater for 15 to 20 trailers at one time.

Mr Turner said he hoped the area would be restored to public use once the sailing base had been constructed.

He said: ‘When I came down here three or four weeks ago the builders were gone and I thought they had a chance to put the trailer parking back.

‘Now I see they have turned it into a Ben Ainslie car park.

‘I was very disappointed about it. It’s a brilliant slipway but it’s no good anymore because it hasn’t got the parking facilities. Once again, we have been fobbed of by the council and lost a very much-needed facility.’

But a Portsmouth City Council spokesman said boat users would soon be able to park their trailers in the area again. The spokesman said: ‘Trailer parking has been provided at the Camber – enough for around six small trailers. The spaces are occupied by a large trailer at present but we expect this to be moved very soon.

‘We will have signage in place as soon as possible explaining that the spaces are only for 24 hours and are available on a first-come-first-served basis.’

Mr Turner said the current situation had led to people parking boat trailers on the slipway itself, which was not allowed. He said: ‘It clearly states you are not to leave them there.’

Mr Turner said most boat users would be happy to use the slipway at Eastney, but it was still inaccessible due a thick bank of shingle over the pavement.

The shingle needs to be regularly cleared as stones are brought in by the tide. But the council is unable to keep this slipway clear because of a lack of resources.

The council spokesman said: ‘Unfortunately, limited resources mean we’re not able to maintain the Eastney slipway as we would wish.’