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SUN Campaign History - 14th Aug 1995

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CONTRAS first formal meeting with the National Trust

Following an open beach meeting a formal meeting was organised between the National Trust, English Nature and four CONTRAS 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:

  1. 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 area.
  2. 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.
  3. 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.
  4. 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;
  5. That the existing, signs are intimidating should be re-phrased (we suggested "Clothing Optional Area Ahead" and "Clothes Optional Beyond This Point"); 

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 could easily be five times as long, and rethink their contentious proposals accordingly.

Read the next page to
discover the
flawed consultation process
the National Trust used to justify
erecting the restrictive posts


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