A meeting of the culture and amenities sub-committee in Harold has expressed disappointment over the village’s failure to win a coveted Blue Flag Award for the third year in a row.
The rejection email cited ‘poor water quality, a general lack of ice-cream kiosks, bucket-and-spade retailers and lifeboats. Oh, and not being located at the seaside.’
But, rather than just record ‘downhearted’ in the minutes, the committee used positive thinking and came up with a proposal to give Harold a better chance of getting a Blue Flag next year.
Councillor Crossley (Con) was just back from a week in Tenerife, where he had discovered that Player de los Americanos has a totally artificial beach. “They shipped in some sand from Morocco,” he told the meeting, “stuck some palm trees and bunting around and, ole, it’s a resort.”
“The first step,” said Crossley, “is to apply for an EU Inner Rural Cultural and Recreational Regeneration Initiative Grant for the required funding, but in case I made that up, how about we all chip in, hire a lorry and fetch some sand over from Canvey Island? We could make a nice beach down by the old canal.”
Councillor Cummerbund (Lib), however, pointed out that they already had quite a lot of ‘sand-like stuff’ in the Council Warehouse, but Crossley said it was ‘grit,’ “and, anyway, nobody wants to go to the seaside when it’s snowing.” The meeting closed with an agreement that a feasibility study should be set up to look into the general idea of creating a small seaside area somewhere in Harold.
“It’ll bring in the tourists,” added Crossley, “and provide fresh air and exercise facilities, with scope for hosting major sports events…” He then drifted off into a private reverie about judging the women’s beach volleyball final.