Today the Planning Inspectorate could have been deciding the future of the waves at Challaborough. However, SAS contested the proposal to dump rock armoury on Challaborough beach, mobilised the local surfing community and ensured their concerns over this inappropriate coastal defence scheme were heard just in time.
Over a thousand local surfers, waveriders and beach users signed SAS’s Protect Our Waves (POW) petition to the Planning Inspectorate opposing the dumping of rock armoury on the beach as this could impact on the quality of waves at Challaborough. This resounding response sent a clear message to all involved, damaging the important surfing waves at Challaborough was not an option.
The developers suggested the proposal was needed to protect 2 cliff top holiday properties. Their initial application was declined by the local authority, so the developers submitted an appeal to the Planning Inspectorate. However, independent shore line assessments predicted little or no cliff erosion over the next 100 years. The POW campaign promoted the social and economic importance of the waves at Challaborough and submitted official comments alongside their 1,098 E petitions sent to the Planning Inspectorate. Today SAS campaigners intended to be at the Planning Inspectorate’s hearing, but instead SAS campaigners and the Challaborough surfing community can celebrate a great POW campaign victory!
The developers have withdrawn their appeal to the Planning Inspectorate and the waves at Challaborough have been protected from this development.
SAS Campaign Director Andy Cummins says: “This is a great POW victory for Challaborough and reinforces the importance of waves to the entire community, both economically and socially. Without a passionate surfing community who were willing to stand shoulder to shoulder with SAS this great wave could have been lost.”