From David Grimshaw.
YOUR sports columnist Chris Lake informed JEP readers on 17 June that hotelier David Seymour had produced revolutionary plans of remarkable vision to create in St Ouen’s Bay (as his legacy to the Island) a state-of-the-art surfing paradise.
Through the Jersey Surfboard Club website and the letters page of the JEP, surfers of all ages strongly condemned the overall size of the £10 million development and considered the plans unacceptable for both surfing and environmental reasons.
These letters subsequently drew comments from Helier Clement (JEP, 23 June), who hoped that ‘the nimby brigade would not get their selfish way and the Watersplash would be developed for the future benefit of all’.
With the future benefit of all in mind, I am sincerely hoping that the two JEP journalists and, more importantly, David Seymour, had the privilege as I did to view the stunning Channel Television programme ‘Wild West Jersey – a natural playground’, brilliantly photographed and produced by Sue Daley and sincerely and sympathetically narrated by Mike Stentiford, who was filmed with the land management team working diligently and happily in the west’s unique national treasure trove of wild orchids, sea lavender, green lizards, lapwings, spoonbills and many more natural delights.
It is disappointing that these dedicated conservationists have now been made aware that – not dissimilar to the star of the bay, the endangered marsh harrier – St Ouen’s Bay itself is once again under ecological threat, for if the plans for the Watersplash surfing centre are successful, a precedent will be set for other opportunist developments, causing a further detriment to the whole bay and its ecology.
Chris Lake reported that David Seymour is a member of a surfing family and just wants to do his best for the bay because he loves surfing. So can we hope that if he seriously wants to do his best for the bay, then past, present and future generations of the Islandwide surfing family, and all who appreciate the wild and unique St Ouen’s Bay, will wish that he considers more modest plans for the Watersplash, leaving the Island with his future legacy of just a small footprint in the sand.
Les Talus Verts,
Rue du Grouet,