Whenever I mention the ghastly and unsightly ‘sewage pipe’ pouring muck into the sea someone will correct me to say that it is most definitely not a sewage pipe but merely a rainwater runoff outfall.
Now Councillor Peter Chowney, a qualified microbiologist and leader of the council, has confirmed that it is indeed a sewage pipe.
As he has pointed out it contains misdirected human sewage as well as faeces from ‘dogs, seagulls, foxes, badgers and so on’.
My concern, as a regular sea swimmer, is not whether or not the level of coliform bacteria is too high as I always swim with my mouth firmly shut. My concern is about the awful impact on tourism that this monstrosity in our midst must have.
Who would take a picture of themselves holidaying on the beach at Hastings to post on Facebook or Instagram with a ugly pipe pouring its toxic contents into the sea in which young children are happily frolicking?
We in Hastings have become used to this eyesore and it doesn’t have the same impact on us as it does on visitors.
If I went to Brighton or Marbella or Rimini and there was a sewage pipe pouring wastewater into the sea I would seriously reconsider before holidaying there again.
I am not along in this view – the image of this pipe has never appeared in publicity material for the town.
Fifteen years ago Hastings stopped dumping sewage in the sea and now redirects it to Southern Water’s wastewater treatment plant.
A simple diversion of the outflow from our sewage pipe into the system that feeds the plant at Pebsham would solve two problems: the ongoing emission of diarrhoea-causing coliform organisms into the most popular part of our beach and also enable us to get rid of the massive rusting and disgusting sewage pipe that disfigures our lovely seafront and devalues our attractiveness to tourists.
The new pier will only increase the impact of this excrescence as visitors will be able to see it from a much wider angle, increasing the numbers exposed to its repulsiveness.
Failing that, let’s cover it up with brickwork or run the outflow pipe below the beach to release its contents further out to sea.
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