Beach huts for tourists

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HOLIDAYMAKERS in Portsmouth will now be able to rent out beach huts for the first time.

Two huts on the seafront that are available for rental on a weekly basis will no longer be reserved just for local residents, in a bid to bring in as much cash as possible.

It is thought new bookings, that were approved at a culture meeting yesterday, could bring in an extra £2,000 a year to the council.

Jo Dalling, the council's business support manager, said: 'We are pleased to be able to offer beach huts to visitors outside of the city.

'They will bring in another £2,000 a year if fully booked. It will also make secondary spending on the beach better and it shows visitors we are welcoming them. It might encourage them to stay an extra few days, you don't know.

'We found they weren't always in use by residents. Last year we widened the net but it was still the same.'

Cllr Frank Jonas added: 'I think that it's a really good idea about the beach huts. It can be even  more of an attraction if people can go online and book it.'

Weekly costs of hire for a hut are currently £96 between April 6 and June 21, and £36 between November 9 and April 4. During high season the huts cost £163.20 to hire for a week.

The rentals will not be available to visitors during high season (June 22-September 6).