While we have been pleased to see that the long awaited car park surface improvements are finally being delivered car parking continues to cause a lot of frustration to residents and visitors.
Easter saw the West Bay Road Car Park north end remain closed despite our requests to West Dorset District Council to open it up. In the event it was no surprise that we were proved right as fine weather led to cars driving around West Bay searching for non-existent car parking spaces, although residential roads in the Meadowlands Estate and elsewhere ended up chock-full of cars.
The timing of the resurfacing isn’t great and no effort has been made to warn motorists of the temporary lack of spaces or provide alternative provision. Meanwhile motor homes can enjoy overnight 24 hour car parking in the Station Yard Car Park for just £2, blocking spaces for other vehicles.
We recently met West Dorset District Council officials at West Bay to discuss this on site. It was good to have some recognition of the pressures West Bay faces and assurances that in future the West Bay Road Car Park will be fully open from Easter each year. There are stated intentions to change parking regulations in relation to parking in Station Yard Car Park subject to the support of councillors. There will inevitably still be a period of parking turmoil as the improvements to surfaces are completed but at least we have had the chance to engage face to face with council officials.
Come and watch the boats being put back into the Harbour and join us for a coffee !
There is a consultation event at the Salthouse, between 10am-4pm this Thursday, 1sr February on planned improvements by WDDC to the surface of the West Bay Road, Station Yard and Bridport Arms car parks.
The Forum has long supported the need for improvements to these car parks to improve their safety, accommodate the maximum number of vehicles possible and enhance their appearance. We hope the schemes put forward will achieve this (there are two options for the Station Yard Car Park), but it is obviously open to those attending the exhibition to make their own judgements as well as suggesting any things, such as signage for example, that could also be improved at the same time.
The attached poster gives details of the event.W Bay Proposed Plans promo
Happy Christmas to everyone who lives in, visits or just plain loves West Bay !
As usual at this time of year we tend to start thinking about Christmas and it is pleasing to be able to use this website promote some seasonal events, including an annual lighting up of the West Bay Christmas Tree on 3rd December – please see our events page for details of those taking place in early December.
The Forum has made representations regularly about the condition (lack of cleaning) of the public toilets in West Bay and were not surprised to learn that the current contractor is pulling out in the new year. We would like to see the management of public toilets transferred to Bridport Town Council, who we believe are much better placed to ensure a reliable cleaning regime is in place.
You may have noticed that the former West Bay Methodist Church – the Chapel on the Beach, has been fenced off. This is to allow work on the building to take place and the main contractors will hopefully be on-site early in the New Year. The plans to create a Discovery Centre for West Bay are being taken forward by the Bridport Area Development Trust and they have recently engaged Design Consultants Smith and Jones (who recently worked on Bridport Museum) to help plan the interior of the building. We hope to be able to share some of their initial ideas with Forum members shortly.
Three other projects in West Bay, funded by the Coastal Communities Fund are being co-ordinated by the Dorset Coast Forum. These are a redesign of the area opposite the George to create a “Welcome Zone”, the creation of a viewing platform and access that can be used by the disabled onto East Beach and improvements to the surface of the railway walk/cycletrack to Bridport. You may recall two consultation events were held at the Salthouse during the summer and we hope to have more details of these projects to share with you shortly.
Finally we were delighted to attend a book launch recently of “Seabird” a photographic account of the fishing community in West Bay. The book and over 250 photos in it are the work of Damian Bird. The book is available from Damian Bird photography or Waterstones bookshop.
If you are not currently a member of the Forum please see the how to join page and keep up to date with everything that is going on in West Bay.