A view of the completed works alongside the duck pond and Imperial gorund. Photo by Simon Horn. Ref exe 5506-32-13SH To order your copy of this photograph go to www.exmouthjournal.co.uk and click on Photo Orders.
Friday, August 16, 2013
Broken glass and old batteries found on the foreshore of Imperial Recreation Ground have led to safety concerns from users.
Kite surfer Adrian Toole had spotted ‘a lot of broken glass’ on the edge of the Duck Pond, and he had even cut his foot.
The area, which is on top of an old dump, is popular with dog walkers, kite surfers and windsurfers and has recently been resurfaced by East Devon District Council (EDDC).
The work followed concerns from the Environment Agency that the concrete barrier on the foreshore, which stops the rubbish from the old dump from sliding into the River Exe, was crumbling.
So EDDC contractors resurfaced the area and repaired the concrete barrier.
But now the contractors have finished work, users are concerned that dangerous debris has not been cleared up.
Mr Toole said: “What I would like to see is for the sand (on the foreshore) to be cleaned 10 metres down, or replaced entirely.
“Items have been working their way up through the surface and I think the work has disturbed it.”
He said that EDDC’s chief engineer Keith Steele had told kite surfers that if anything dangerous was found, the workers would pick it up as they went.
He added: “I am not sure that they have done that.
“It’s dangerous. It’s the nature of our sport that you are bare footed, and this stuff is often invisible, just below the waterline. I have cut my foot and people walk their dogs there.
“From what I have seen, they have done a very good job but they need to finish what they started.”
An EDDC spokesman said: “The works have been carried out correctly, but it was always inevitable that some debris from the old tip would be turned up by the works.
“Other glass, plastic etc is not likely to have come from the tip itself, but may also have been disturbed by the works.
“We have been careful to regularly update local water users and I am pleased to report that some of them have even offered to help us to remove this debris.
“A final clear-up will be done by our contractors this week.
“We will continue to monitor the situation regularly thereafter.
“It is possible that we may have to organise further so-called ‘litter picks’ along the shore for a while and again it would be good to involve voluntary/community groups in this.”