COUNCIL bosses are looking at creating a waste site next door to Three Shells Beach and Southend Pier.
Southend Council wants to move a rubbish depot from Lucy Road and has earmarked the site between the pier and Adventure Island as the possible location for a storage shed for ten 1,100- litre rubbish bins.
The proposed site, in Marine Gardens, off Western Esplanade, is used as a car park for pier staff and equipment storage, but could be turned into a store for the bins.
The plans have prompted fears the bins could attract rats and more seagulls and lead to smells, noise and traffic problems during a busy summer season.
Objecting: Robert Steele
Robert Steele, 64, from Shelley Square, Southend, said: “Three Shells Beach is popular for families and tourists, so why is the council proposing a waste storage unit at the side of the pier?
“Lorries will be travelling on the service road by the beach.
This will cause a danger, not to mention the smell.
“If this went ahead, I believe families would eventually avoid the area. Does the council really believe this is a good idea?”
On display? The planning notice
A public notice has been posted in the pier service road, but not on the beach, and Mr Steele believes fewpeople will see it there.
There are 17 parking spaces and ten would be left following the changes, which the council says is enough.
Twenty one rubbish collectors would work on the site during summer, with just four in winter and rubbish trucks would visit the site between 9am and 11pm all year around.
Seaside spot: Three Shells Beach
A statement with the application said: “The site is adjacent to Adventure Island, a significant source of lighting noise and movement. It is envisaged the proposed use would not increase noise levels significantly.”
Three other sites, at Darlows Green, Pitmans Close and the corner of Lifstan Waywere ruled out.
Proposal: Planned rubbish shed
A council spokesman said: "This plan has been carefully designed to manage any potential issues and it should be stressed that rubbish will not be held overnight or for long periods of time. The council is well aware of the importance of our beaches to local people and businesses, and how important they are for tourism and visitors.
“It is therefore essential that we keep the seafront clean and tidy, and this facility needs to be as near to the seafront as it can be to allow us to do this.
“This is the most suitable and best option on council owned land within this area. It will be safe secure storage on a temporary basis, and is not a waste treatment plant.”