Measures introduced to try and combat instances of anti-social behaviour and safety concerns at Tenby harbour pier over busy holiday periods, are to become a permanent fixture in 2024.
Local authorities took the decision over the Whitsun holiday period to close off a section of the harbour pier at high tides, after serious safety concerns resurfaced with the volume of youngsters and people jumping in the water causing risk of injury from vessel movements within the harbour.
Anti-social behaviour concerns were also raised, with teenagers congregating down the pier, drinking and then diving in the sea, with some choosing to climb onto nearby premises to gain higher vantage points to jump from.
One boat operator reported that on one occasion, five teenagers jumped from the pier directly in front of his vessel, with one shouting ‘bomb the boat!’
“I appreciate that teenagers need to have fun but a tragedy isn’t far away if this isn’t policed correctly,” he remarked.
The volume of ‘boy racers’ driving to the location for meet ups had also been flagged-up by the authorities as an anti-social concern, with efforts to reduce the numbers being made, including introducng fencing to close off the pier and security staff.
Pembrokeshire Count Council’s Cabinet Member for Residents’ Services, Cllr Rhys Sinnett said at the time: “It is a working harbour and there are very real safety concerns from boat operators and Harbour staff when individuals use the area to swim and jump.
“We took the decision to restrict access to the end of the pier to boat owners and trip ticket holders at high tide following serious concerns raised about the volumes of people and risk of injury from boats.”
At this month’s meeting of Tenby Town Council, Cllr Joe Criddle who works as a skipper within the tourism sector for Tenby Boat Trips, told his fellow councillors, that at the recent meeting of Tenby Harbour Users Association they had been told that the temporary gate installed on the pier during the summer had resulted in a positive impact on anti-social and dangerous behaviour.
He said that it had been confirmed that a permanent gate was to be designed with a pedestrian gate within it, a move that was welcomed by all harbour users.
At a recent meeting of Tenby Harbour Users Association, when discussing the matter with members, chair Angus Dunlop noted how the temporary gate had almost overnight, changed the culture and negative atmosphere emerging at times on the pier.
The crowds which had been gathering at the spot, were moving elsewhere, he stated.