RESIDENTS across the conurbation have expressed their disdain at visitors camping overnight on beaches in breach of the rules.

One man said he was "verbally abused" by overnight visitors and others expressed their anger and disgust at the rubbish left behind by campers.

Kara-Jade Haywood, who lives in Bearwood and went to the beach early on Sunday to see the sunrise, told the Daily Echo: "I think it’s an absolute disgrace, with all the mess and sleeping wherever like it is a free campsite."

She spotted many tents on the sand as well as people sleeping in cars near the beach.

One image even showed a group of people who had slept out in the open air on a blow up mattress.

A Canford Cliff resident, who asked to remain anonymous, was also not impressed with the behaviour of the campers and BCP Council's inaction on the issue to date.

He said he had frequently encountered litter and human faeces while walking his dog on the beach, all of which he says was left by campers.

He added: "There have been quite a few people I have approached to say that camping on the beach is illegal, but one man said 'I'm a rule-breaker, that's what we do'. I have also seen cars parked on the top of the cliffs with people camping in them. This is zero value tourism as it does nothing for the local economy. BCP Council cannot enforce removing them so they should look to international leads.

"The council needs to gain revenue from campers the same way they do from speed cameras by investing in security,"

In response, Cllr Vikki Slade, Leader of BCP Council said: "We can ask people to move on and we are, but we don't have the staff to evict them all. We need the police too, but with incidents like the fire on Saturday night occurring, they can't always help. I agree that it is zero value tourism and is incredibly disrespectful to the community but from the perspective of the police there is no direct harm caused by camping and it is not the highest priority.

"We could spend hundreds of thousands of pounds on security, but there isn't a magic money tree. Saturday night was ridiculous, so there is an emergency meeting planned for Monday, August 10 to discuss additional resources that can be put in."