AS the second beach hut waiting list opens in Poole, concern has been raised about the cost to residents.

As those on the Sandbanks list, which opened last week, face an average wait of 24 years to be able to hire a hut, Cllr Phil Eades has questioned the £25 charge to be put on a list.

“It is quite outrageous that the beach has been split into six very small areas and that the council is charging £25 to join each list,” he said.

“I wonder why the council’s previous policy of charging a one-off fee of £25 to join the waiting list was changed.

“We now have a situation whereby if a resident does not really mind where a beach hut is situated it will cost him £150 to inform the council of this.

“Could we not allow residents to pay £25 to join as many lists as they want?”

Kevin McErlane, head of culture and community learning, Borough of Poole said: “The fee encourages residents to be selective in their choice of preferred location, as in the past we have experienced issues with people requesting a beach hut and then refusing a hut offered to them as they did not like the location.

“This process encourages people to be selective in choosing locations and this in turn will enable huts to be reissued quickly when they become available.

“The £25 administration fee to join the waiting list has not increased in more than 10 years and this level of charge is broadly comparable to other areas.”

He said: “We could not have anticipated the unprecedented level of demand for the first beach hut waiting list at Sandbanks. In light of this demand, we have offered anyone who subscribed in the first few days a full refund if they feel they are dissatisfied with their position on the waiting list.”

However one resident said: “£25 per list wasn’t much to ask in comparison to paying £1,600 for rental.”