BEACH hut owners and chalet tenants are today calling for money raised from the rents they pay at Felixstowe to be ploughed back into resort facilities.

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Suffolk Coastal says the rent is used to protect council services – such as street cleaning, free public toilets and rubbish collection.

Hut owner Barbara Grace, part of the team aiming to set up a new owners’ association, said: “If the average rent is say £500, then the council is raking in £500,000 a year from the huts alone.

“That money should be spent on Felixstowe seafront, resort activities or improvements, not being used in Leiston or Saxmundham to pay for street cleaning.

“If hut owners paid £10 a year to join an association, we could raise £10,000 a year to jointly fund improvements we might like to the hut sites if the council would also contribute by giving back some of our rent towards projects.”

Ms Grace said she had researched beach huts rents at sites run by other coastal authorities and discovered that at some resorts council tax payers were charged half-price – to avoid people unfairly paying twice for services to which they contributed – while people from outside the area paid the full rent.

Council leader Ray Herring said: “If they do get the people together, a beach hut owners’ association would be very useful and I think it is a very positive position.”

1 comment

  • Maybe im looking at it too simplistically but... The council own the land, can charge what they want and can use the money for what they want. I rent my house and I can’t tell my landlord how to spend my rent money!!! Having a beach hut is a privilege and they are in high demand, if you don’t like the charges then give it up and make way for someone that will pay the increase. Our family had a hut at Felixstowe (I’ve lived here all my life) when I was growing up and it was a luxury that not everyone could afford. There are complaints about the rent increase, yet they are willing to pay additional money into an association pot, which would just cause more problems as people would want the money spend on their section of the beach! Im not sure what the cost of the chalets are but im sure the council could make at least double the current amount by renting them out on a daily basis to tourists. Also, you can’t compare other areas costs to this area – I wouldn’t be happy for people to get half price if they pay local council tax, as I don’t get a reduction for not having a beach hut, not having cleaning services daily down my road or not having gardeners tending to my borders. We are in a recession, so many services have been withdrawn or costs increased in order to balance the books – this is just one of them and people need to accept this unfortunately. You’ve heard the council tell you that they are not changing their mind so I don’t really see what options you have as ultimately you are on their land. Sorry, but that’s just the way it is these days.

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    Thursday, February 28, 2013

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