Advice to stay out of the water at 14 Thanet beaches remains in place – eight days after pumping station failure

Warning signs at Thanet beaches Photo Rebecca Douglas

Advice against bathing or entering the area below the high water mark at 14 of Thanet’s beaches following an unscreened wastewater release from the Southern Water pumping station at Broadstairs continues to remain in place following further inspections of the coastline.

All signs will stay displayed on the affected beaches between Westbrook Bay and the Western Undercliff in Ramsgate.

This follows a failure at Southern Water’s Wastewater Pumping Station in Broadstairs on Tuesday (October 5).

However, Thanet council says that due to the improving picture it is hoped the advice can be lifted before the weekend.

Cllr Ash Ashbee, Leader of the council said: “Every day we continue to advise people against swimming in our waters is quite frankly a day too long. Being forced into a position where we have to ask bathers, water sports enthusiasts and even businesses not to go about their normal activities on the grounds of safety, is simply unacceptable.

“I have again called for a meeting with Southern Water executives to express my strongest dissatisfaction and to understand exactly when things are going to improve. It’s encouraging to know that discussions are underway at a national level on these issues, but my priority is to the residents and businesses in Thanet, and I say enough is enough. I will ensure that our voices are heard once again and will be expecting the strongest and quickest action to resolve these ongoing wastewater issues.”

Photo Rebecca Douglas

Contractors for Southern Water have carried out beach inspections every day to assess the impact of the spill and to clean up any evidence of debris. Council officers are also continuing to carry out visual inspections.

This weekend Broadstairs is due to be the grandstand for the final Tech Race of paddleboarding’s GBSUP National Series.

The Viking Bay Classic is scheduled to be staged on October 16 in partnership with Kent Surf School and Kent SUP Racing after the latter was asked by GBSUP (Great Britain Stand Up Paddleboarding) to host the final event of its national Ocean Technical series.

A public protest over the Southern Water waste releases on Thanet’s coastline has been organised by Save Our NHS in Kent. This will take place at Margate’s harbour steps on Saturday, October 23 from noon.

Final race of Great Britain Stand Up Paddleboarding series to be held at Viking Bay