Bembridge Harbour Trust has been selected by Southern Co-op’s Bembridge store as its fundraising partner for the year, supporting the charity’s efforts to protect the ecology and viability of Bembridge Harbour.
The Bembridge Harbour Trust, formed to protect and enhance the benefit of the harbour area for the community, will set aside all money raised to restore the Harbour’s Groyne No 1, which would help protect the harbour from filling with over 2,500 tonnes of shingle and sand annually.
BHT chairman, Jeremy Gully, said,
“We see it as having real ecological and sustainability benefits.
“The whole community would suffer if the harbour and its natural environment are not accessible, protected and enhanced.
“This is one simple way to help keep the Harbour working for one and all.”
Built in the 1900s
Groyne No 1, was built in the 1900s to prevent the effects of longshore drift and to direct and concentrate ebb tide flows, helping to carry sediment out to sea.
However, as the groyne suffered the neglect of previous Harbour owners, the amount of sand and shingle entering the harbour has recently accelerated, not only reducing the usable area for the community, but also threatening RAMSA-recognised soft mud bird feeding habitats.
Jeremy Gully said,
“Judicial investment in the groyne will protect both the environmentally sensitive bird feeding habitat and help the harbour itself reduce the need for invasive, expensive, repetitive and disruptive mechanical dredging.”
Besides being an ecologically sound solution, harnessing natural forces, a restored groyne is expected to help the business, social, sporting, tourism, training and educational potential of the area.
“BHT believe the core of a viable harbour is the ability to navigate to and in it.
“This allows the surrounding community to thrive.”
‘Love our Harbour’
All money raised through the Southern Co-op’s charity partnership will go towards developing the Harbour Groyne No 1 project, with the BHT working alongside the project leaders, Bembridge Harbour Users Group and in turn the Harbour Authority.
BHT’s ‘Love our Harbour’ motto closely chimes with Southern Co-op’s ‘Love Your Neighbourhood’ community programme.
Helping engage the community
Nikki Stone, Duty manager at the Sherbourne Street store (pictured top left), said,
“It is good to find and organisation promoting the same values as the co-op.
“If it’s good for the community then Southern Co-op, like BHT, will do what we can in support.
“This Groyne project along with the range of awareness events proposed should help engage the community and see good things achieved. Come and see us at the store, pick up a leaflet and get involved.”
Report by Jeremy Gully as Chair Bembridge Harbour Trust. Ed