Campaigners Discover They Do Have Access To Castle Cove Beach
8:40am 13th November 2014
After battling to make the steps down to Castle Cove Beach a public right of way - campaigners in Weymouth have discovered they've actually had the right to do so since 2012.
Friends of Castle Cove unearthed legislation that gives the public the right to walk along England's coastlines and Dorset County Council’s legal department have confirmed the finding applies to the beach.
Now the group hopes to work with the council to ensure people can exercise their right to walk across the beach.
The Friends Group’s Legal Researcher Ian Thomas said: "It seemed too good to be true."
"The Friends contacted Dorset County Council, whose legal department confirmed that the public have full statutory right to walk at their own risk over all of Castle Cove beach, except for the private gardens and buildings.
"Councillors have been emailing us in increasing numbers, saying that they would like to get the public back onto the beach again, but they couldn't, because it was private land,"
"The beach is still private, but it is the first in the country to have full statutory public access under the Act."
The Marine and Coastal Access Act of 2009 is intended to enable the public to walk the coastlines of England and because of the Olympics, Weymouth and Portland was granted the first scheme to be put into operation under the Act.