VOTE: Do you welcome the decision to reopen the Bognor launch ramp?

Three members of Arun District Council's foreshore team at the foot of the ramp
Three members of Arun District Council's foreshore team at the foot of the ramp

Jetskiers are welcome again at the launch ramp in Bognor Regis.

The seafront facility at Gloucester Road has been officially re-opened by Arun District Council more than three months after it was shut.

But one of its most regular users said many of his friends had abandoned the town because of the uncertainty about the ramp.

Terry Skilton said: “I’ve come back this year but, possibly after that, I won’t bother, to be honest.

“A lot of my friends have gone to other places such as Margate.

“Bognor’s definitely going to lose out because of this. The loss of revenue is terrific.

“I would be spending £6,000 in the town in these six weeks alone. There would be 30 of us at the ramp.

“What’s at the ramp now is absolutely diabolical to what used to be there. It doesn’t open until 10am and shuts at 5pm exactly.

“But a lot of us want to be in the water at 8am and you can’t get your craft ashore at 5pm if there’s a high tide and a strong wind.”

The Observer reported at Easter the anger at the ramp’s closure.

The ramp had been operated for years by a private company on Arun’s behalf. It has not been revealed why that arrangement has failed to be repeated this year.

At Easter, the council said it would operate the ramp in 2012 before it sought tenders from those who wanted to run it next year.

Cllr Paul Dendle, the council’s cabinet member in charge of tourism activity, said: “It’s my hope that now the weather is warming up people will really make use of this well-managed seafront facility.

“Bognor is an excellent location for all kinds of water-based activities and the council is keen to remind people that the ramp is ready for use.”

The launch ramp will be open daily until September 2.

Have your say

Do you welcome the decision to reopen the launch ramp?

You can cast your vote by clicking on the poll at the top right of this story.

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