Hastings council work has made Alexandra Park lake a ‘dump’, says angry resident

The boating lake in Alexandra Park. Picture by Richard Betts
The boating lake in Alexandra Park. Picture by Richard Betts

Council bosses have turned the boating lake in Alexandra Park into a ‘dump’, an angry resident has said.

Richard Betts said he can no longer enjoy his hobby of taking his remote controlled (RC) boat along the lake because of council works there.

He said: “Before the council started this idea of putting islands in the middle of the boating lake, I used to enjoy taking my RC boat down there. But now I can’t take it anywhere as I am an epileptic and can’t drive. Alexandra Park was the closest place for me to go but now I can only take my boat out if I have a friend or family member with a car who can drive me to Eastbourne and that is not often. The lake was once a lovely place for families and others to go and sit around. But now it looks like a dump.”

Councillor Warren Davies, Hastings Borough Council’s lead member for environment, said: “As a borough we are very proud of the innovative, natural and sustainable processes that have been put in place in the park; the primary function of the ponds at Alexandra Park is to purify water.

“The floating planted islands are key to this purification process ensuring the water when it reaches our beaches meets the current very strict EU standards for clean bathing water.

“These necessary changes in the ponds have ensured the stringent water quality standards have been met with no loss of beauty and increased biodiversity. Indeed, without these measures it was likely our beaches would have failed the clean bathing water tests earlier this year.

“There are two annual tasks that must be carried out in the ponds at the park; removal of excess weed and the removal of leaves and twigs in the autumn. Weed removal is currently being carried out in the former boating lake as part of the natural process of yearly pond maintenance. This weed and debris is then converted into highly nutrient compost that is used on planted areas within the park.

“There has never been an intention to reduce activities available to residents and visitors in the park and we welcome the opportunity to discuss alternative areas that would be appropriate for use with the local remote control boat club.”

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