CONTRAS first formal meeting with the National Trust
open beach meeting a formal meeting was organised
between the National Trust, English Nature and four
representatives. The meeting was chaired by National Trust Managing
Agent Mark Harold
on 14th August 1995.
Will they heed 1,084 nudist calls?
CONTRAS were given nearly two hours to present the arguments of 1,084
angry beach users and the Trusts representatives heard them out. CONTRAS representatives forcibly made the following points:
- That the new "Heather Walk" path,
advertised in the
National Trust's promotional leaflet for visitors who wished to avoid seeing
nudists (and handed out at the car parks during the 1995 season)
passed right through the middle of the traditional nudist
- That, if they insisted on a new path for non-nudists it should
be routed to the landward side of the broadleaf woodland which forms
a natural screen.
- That the area between the northern marker and the point,
currently little used, should be added to the nudist area to provide
for the expanding nudist population.
- That there should be advisory signs on Footpath 6 much nearer to
the road, so that
visitors not wanting to see nudists would be saved the long hard slog all
the way to the edge of the beach;
- That the existing, signs are intimidating should be re-phrased (we suggested
"Clothing Optional Area Ahead" and "Clothes Optional Beyond
The National Trust, despite agreeing that nudist use is growing,
refused to accede to any of these logical and reasonable suggestions.
They say that
they do not intend to designate any area as exclusively for the use of any
particular group. To our knowledge, no-one has claimed exclusive rights for
nudists, neither is there any intention to stake such a claim. We are quite
happy to share with textiles, even though they have exclusive rights on 2.5
miles of the Shell Bay and Studland beaches. Meanwhile, the National Trust encourages
textiles to dilute our 900 metres of sand, and tries to force us into a tiny
area of dunes.
CONTRAS left with the impression that, by and large, it had
been a useful and constructive meeting.
On August 17 CONTRAS handed to Mr Hann for his superiors a list of 1084 names and
addresses of protestors, 194 of them National Trust members, all totally against the
proposed restrictions. CONTRAS hoped the National Trust will take notice of this list, which
easily be five times as long, and rethink their contentious proposals
next page to
flawed consultation process
Trust used to
erecting the restrictive posts