Closed - but Boscombe bodyboarders still love the surf reef

Bournemouth Echo: Bodyboarders Clive Stopper, James Blackwell and Paul Middlewick are still using the reef at Boscombe despite it being officially closed Bodyboarders Clive Stopper, James Blackwell and Paul Middlewick are still using the reef at Boscombe despite it being officially closed

A GROUP of bodyboarders love using the Boscombe Surf Reef despite it being officially closed on safety grounds.

They say around 20 bodyboarders – and a handful of stand-up surfers – still use the reef, which they claim is far less dangerous than a natural reef.

But Bournemouth council has repeated its advice that people should not use the reef.

Paul Middlewick, 29, an aerospace engineer from Southbourne, said: “We know we are in the minority of those who do actually think it’s alright.

“It’s faster and more difficult than the waves at the beach.

“We have been around the world and all completed at national level and we know what we are talking about.

“The longboarders wanted waves where they could stand up for 200 metres. They hate it because it’s a dumpy, difficult ride, and they haven’t got the long, perfect wave they were promised.

“The quality is quite unpredictable but there’s no issue over safety at all. We’ve all been in a lot more dangerous positions than on the Boscombe Surf Reef.

“If you go in, the RNLI warn you, but they can’t stop you.”

He added: “This was a run-down area before and no one came down.

“£3million for the regeneration of this area is peanuts, really.”

The reef was opened in November 2009 but closed in spring 2011 after the council discovered two damaged bags had partially deflated, following a reported boat strike.

Clive Stopper, 28, from Southbourne, said: “The power of the reef waves is tenfold that on the beaches.

“I paddle out knowing even a small wave will pack a punch, something that will never happen on the beach.

“I don’t think you will find many surfers travelling up from Cornwall because the variety and quality there will always be that much greater.

“But I have been using the reef consistently and it has provided some of the best surfing I’ve had in Bourn-emouth.

“And you cannot have a safer alternative.

“If you get slammed on the bags, all you do is bounce!”

James Blackwell, 23, from Southbourne, an aerospace engineer, and former national bodyboarding champion, said: “It’s a really good wave for bodyboarders, really powerful – you can go a lot faster than you can by the beach.

“Any reef in the world is a lot more dangerous than this.”

A Bournemouth council spokesman said: “The reef has been closed for safety reasons and therefore we would advise people not to use it.”

Comments (22)

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11:48am Mon 30 Apr 12

John T says...

Paul Middlewick said: '£3 million for the regeneration of this area is peanuts, really.'
If you, the Council Taxpayer, pay peanuts, you can expect monkeys like this.
Paul Middlewick said: '£3 million for the regeneration of this area is peanuts, really.' If you, the Council Taxpayer, pay peanuts, you can expect monkeys like this. John T
  • Score: -1

11:50am Mon 30 Apr 12

tapeworm says...

“It’s a really good wave for bodyboarders, really powerful – you can go a lot faster than you can by the beach.
Exactly what I've been saying all along.
“It’s a really good wave for bodyboarders, really powerful – you can go a lot faster than you can by the beach. Exactly what I've been saying all along. tapeworm
  • Score: 0

11:51am Mon 30 Apr 12

MikeFrench says...

“£3million for the regeneration of this area is peanuts, really.”

Is it really??

I see the 'reef' every day from the clifftop and it is very rare that I see anyone bothering with it - anyone with any local knowledge would know that the West side of Boscombe pier is far better for surfing.
“£3million for the regeneration of this area is peanuts, really.” Is it really?? I see the 'reef' every day from the clifftop and it is very rare that I see anyone bothering with it - anyone with any local knowledge would know that the West side of Boscombe pier is far better for surfing. MikeFrench
  • Score: -1

11:51am Mon 30 Apr 12

MrPitiful says...

Oh my Lord, wait until that old Bob79 bloke & all the others who hang on to his every word see this!

Hold on to your hats!!
Oh my Lord, wait until that old Bob79 bloke & all the others who hang on to his every word see this! Hold on to your hats!! MrPitiful
  • Score: 0

11:56am Mon 30 Apr 12

John T says...

MrPitiful wrote:
Oh my Lord, wait until that old Bob79 bloke & all the others who hang on to his every word see this! Hold on to your hats!!
It's Bob49 actually...perhaps you should lay off that VAT69 for a bit!
[quote][p][bold]MrPitiful[/bold] wrote: Oh my Lord, wait until that old Bob79 bloke & all the others who hang on to his every word see this! Hold on to your hats!![/p][/quote]It's Bob49 actually...perhaps you should lay off that VAT69 for a bit! John T
  • Score: 0

12:10pm Mon 30 Apr 12

Bob49 says...

Odd how no one is ever seen on this reef, or do they only surf at night as claimed before ? If so then they should beware, not of the disintegrating reef but the phantom boat which supposedly struck the reef, also at night.

Mind you I think we can guess where this ridiculous, last desperate puff is coming from -

"£3million for the regeneration of this area is peanuts, really.”

£3m ?

The known figure is closer to £13m, with over £2m having to be taken from the capital reserves to bail out the losses. This figure does not include the costs of repairing the crumbling pier and it's broken lights, or the unknown costs of the final removal of this beach hazard.

As to regeneration, what is actually meant is exclusivity for the Barratt flats as the beach is almost empty in the summer. Anyone visiting the area will see what was left has been mostly washed away leaving a horrible pebble strewen mess. Even the volley ball courts are now in danger of of being washed away.

So what next ?

The Imax and "how we all still watch films there and what a great earner this has been for the council" ?
Odd how no one is ever seen on this reef, or do they only surf at night as claimed before ? If so then they should beware, not of the disintegrating reef but the phantom boat which supposedly struck the reef, also at night. Mind you I think we can guess where this ridiculous, last desperate puff is coming from - "£3million for the regeneration of this area is peanuts, really.” £3m ? The known figure is closer to £13m, with over £2m having to be taken from the capital reserves to bail out the losses. This figure does not include the costs of repairing the crumbling pier and it's broken lights, or the unknown costs of the final removal of this beach hazard. As to regeneration, what is actually meant is exclusivity for the Barratt flats as the beach is almost empty in the summer. Anyone visiting the area will see what was left has been mostly washed away leaving a horrible pebble strewen mess. Even the volley ball courts are now in danger of of being washed away. So what next ? The Imax and "how we all still watch films there and what a great earner this has been for the council" ? Bob49
  • Score: 0

12:21pm Mon 30 Apr 12

John T says...

MrPitiful wrote:
Oh my Lord, wait until that old Bob79 bloke & all the others who hang on to his every word see this! Hold on to your hats!!
Ahoy, ye and avast, ye scoundrel!
I hear word that Capt. Ahab (retd) has been spotted hereabouts.
[quote][p][bold]MrPitiful[/bold] wrote: Oh my Lord, wait until that old Bob79 bloke & all the others who hang on to his every word see this! Hold on to your hats!![/p][/quote]Ahoy, ye and avast, ye scoundrel! I hear word that Capt. Ahab (retd) has been spotted hereabouts. John T
  • Score: 0

12:29pm Mon 30 Apr 12

thevisitor says...

I understand it has been renamed the 'Charon Reef'. Started off as a great idea, but soon found to be a total waste of space and dispensed with.
I understand it has been renamed the 'Charon Reef'. Started off as a great idea, but soon found to be a total waste of space and dispensed with. thevisitor
  • Score: 0

12:54pm Mon 30 Apr 12

paulhumber123 says...

oooh here we go again!

it seems the regeneration is to blame for all the bad weather we've had recently washing away the sand!

nice on bob!
oooh here we go again! it seems the regeneration is to blame for all the bad weather we've had recently washing away the sand! nice on bob! paulhumber123
  • Score: 0

1:02pm Mon 30 Apr 12

paulhumber123 says...

"nice one bob" i meant!
"nice one bob" i meant! paulhumber123
  • Score: 0

1:13pm Mon 30 Apr 12

stopps says...

Perhaps that £3 m (£13m accoRding to gob49 ) Would be bettEr spent on eduCating pAuLhumber123 how to spell.
Perhaps that £3 m (£13m accoRding to gob49 ) Would be bettEr spent on eduCating pAuLhumber123 how to spell. stopps
  • Score: 0

1:20pm Mon 30 Apr 12

Bob49 says...

Curiously it is only the area opposite the reef where the sand has been washed away.

As to the regeneration that has been a failure, as admitted by the council. That's why it is never refered to as such.

The discussion amongst a certain number now is when will the remains of the reef be removed, how much will it cost and from where will the money come from ?

'Heroic' last efforts to save it are doomed. That was why the there was no surf festival this year and why the surf pods have been renamed beach pods.

Perhaps Canute like, you might want to round up a few more to cling onto the volleyball posts before they are washed away, that's if you can remove all the volleyball players who have been playing there all winter - mostly at night, we are told.
Curiously it is only the area opposite the reef where the sand has been washed away. As to the regeneration that has been a failure, as admitted by the council. That's why it is never refered to as such. The discussion amongst a certain number now is when will the remains of the reef be removed, how much will it cost and from where will the money come from ? 'Heroic' last efforts to save it are doomed. That was why the there was no surf festival this year and why the surf pods have been renamed beach pods. Perhaps Canute like, you might want to round up a few more to cling onto the volleyball posts before they are washed away, that's if you can remove all the volleyball players who have been playing there all winter - mostly at night, we are told. Bob49
  • Score: 0

1:30pm Mon 30 Apr 12

paulhumber123 says...

"That was why the there was no surf festival this year"

good one bob!
"That was why the there was no surf festival this year" good one bob! paulhumber123
  • Score: 0

4:31pm Mon 30 Apr 12

stopps says...

Bob's the man, he know his stuff
Bob's the man, he know his stuff stopps
  • Score: 0

5:38pm Mon 30 Apr 12

Bob49 says...

As does everyone else, but well done for trying to stop the inevitable - even if it does involve you lot trying to re-enact the Parrot Sketch, again.

Now perhaps you could tell us how good the films are at the Imax, and why it is still worth keeping.
As does everyone else, but well done for trying to stop the inevitable - even if it does involve you lot trying to re-enact the Parrot Sketch, again. Now perhaps you could tell us how good the films are at the Imax, and why it is still worth keeping. Bob49
  • Score: 0

10:00pm Mon 30 Apr 12

Dr Strangelove says...

Still doing the puff and spin about the smurf grief !!!
Still doing the puff and spin about the smurf grief !!! Dr Strangelove
  • Score: 0

3:12am Tue 1 May 12

MikeFrench says...

Another 'enhanced' photo required to show how wonderful the reef is me thinks.........
Another 'enhanced' photo required to show how wonderful the reef is me thinks......... MikeFrench
  • Score: 0

9:16am Tue 1 May 12

penhale says...

stopps wrote:
Perhaps that £3 m (£13m accoRding to gob49 ) Would be bettEr spent on eduCating pAuLhumber123 how to spell.
Here we go another school teacher.
[quote][p][bold]stopps[/bold] wrote: Perhaps that £3 m (£13m accoRding to gob49 ) Would be bettEr spent on eduCating pAuLhumber123 how to spell.[/p][/quote]Here we go another school teacher. penhale
  • Score: 0

1:05pm Tue 1 May 12

Bob49 says...

MikeFrench wrote:
Another 'enhanced' photo required to show how wonderful the reef is me thinks.........
Could this be the same Paul Humber whose 'enhanced' photos are on an ASR blog and being used to demonstrate that the reef works ? Perhaps an undeclared interest.

As to the reasons behind this last desperate attempt to stop what's left of the reef from finally being dredged out, I should imagine that the consequent fall out might be a bit uncomfortable for some.

Much needed answers might be pushed for and the true level of losses and future liabilities could also be revealed. It could then be seen for what is was - no more than a multi million pound marketing ploy for the Moneycome development, paid for by us the taxpayer.
[quote][p][bold]MikeFrench[/bold] wrote: Another 'enhanced' photo required to show how wonderful the reef is me thinks.........[/p][/quote]Could this be the same Paul Humber whose 'enhanced' photos are on an ASR blog and being used to demonstrate that the reef works ? Perhaps an undeclared interest. As to the reasons behind this last desperate attempt to stop what's left of the reef from finally being dredged out, I should imagine that the consequent fall out might be a bit uncomfortable for some. Much needed answers might be pushed for and the true level of losses and future liabilities could also be revealed. It could then be seen for what is was - no more than a multi million pound marketing ploy for the Moneycome development, paid for by us the taxpayer. Bob49
  • Score: 0

3:42pm Tue 1 May 12

anonymoussurf says...

http://i23.photobuck
et.com/albums/b354/b
leh5150/tellmemore.j
pg
[IMG]http://i23.photobuck et.com/albums/b354/b leh5150/tellmemore.j pg[/IMG] anonymoussurf
  • Score: 0

6:35pm Fri 4 May 12

Ultrarunner says...

The comments on here really go to show what a bunch of cretins there are in this town, Bob49 - £13 million? did you just pick a random number out of your minute head and blurt it out onto the comments page here? And MikeFrench, you don't surf, that much is clear from your comments. Face it numpty's you all envisaged that a few bags of sand would produce world class waves in an area of the world where it is rare to get good conditions, let alone great conditions, the council are to blame for this anger you all feel because they led you up the garden path and you all fell for it - they only wanted to sell of the land for flats of course!! Truth is the reef produces good waves when conditions are right and us lucky few get to ride them without the plebs that usually surf the beachies because lets face it - they don't have the skill. So from all of us "local" bodyboarders and surfers that do enjoy it, thanks - your hard earn tax money provides us with decent waves on occasions...... and don't feel bad - it could have been worse they could have obscured a fantastic view with a building that is now desolate.... oh wait they did..... suckers!!!!! :-)
The comments on here really go to show what a bunch of cretins there are in this town, Bob49 - £13 million? did you just pick a random number out of your minute head and blurt it out onto the comments page here? And MikeFrench, you don't surf, that much is clear from your comments. Face it numpty's you all envisaged that a few bags of sand would produce world class waves in an area of the world where it is rare to get good conditions, let alone great conditions, the council are to blame for this anger you all feel because they led you up the garden path and you all fell for it - they only wanted to sell of the land for flats of course!! Truth is the reef produces good waves when conditions are right and us lucky few get to ride them without the plebs that usually surf the beachies because lets face it - they don't have the skill. So from all of us "local" bodyboarders and surfers that do enjoy it, thanks - your hard earn tax money provides us with decent waves on occasions...... and don't feel bad - it could have been worse they could have obscured a fantastic view with a building that is now desolate.... oh wait they did..... suckers!!!!! :-) Ultrarunner
  • Score: 0

9:14pm Tue 8 May 12

Bob49 says...

The £13m is the councils own figures. Try checking rather than posting up a pile of semi literate fair tales.

NOBODY envisaged anything other than what has happened. Check past posts when this was predicted over 5 years ago.

Carry on with your delusions and the 'Brigadoon' style surfing and boat strikes. None of which happen as well we all know and you do as well.

The real point is who is going to pay to have this rotting, safety hazard finally dredged up - as it cannot continue to slowly disintegrate leaving the beach virtually closed off to visitors for yet another summer season.
The £13m is the councils own figures. Try checking rather than posting up a pile of semi literate fair tales. NOBODY envisaged anything other than what has happened. Check past posts when this was predicted over 5 years ago. Carry on with your delusions and the 'Brigadoon' style surfing and boat strikes. None of which happen as well we all know and you do as well. The real point is who is going to pay to have this rotting, safety hazard finally dredged up - as it cannot continue to slowly disintegrate leaving the beach virtually closed off to visitors for yet another summer season. Bob49
  • Score: 0

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