Neighbours get their wish as Heysham mussel beds reopen

The Oakley Road slipway was the official access point for the mussel beds in 2015.
The Oakley Road slipway was the official access point for the mussel beds in 2015.

Mussel beds at Sandylands will reopen for the fishing season on Monday (July 25) with a different access point after complaints from residents.

Fishermen will now use the Battery car park to get to the beds after a row over them using the Oakley Road slipway in 2015.

Residents complained the high number of vehicles going up and down Oakley Road, a residential street, was dangerous and noisy. The official access point will now move back to the Battery for this season.

Monitoring of the beds and their re-opening is a matter for the North Western Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authority but access to the slipways and beach is the responsibility of Lancaster City Council.

Coun David Smith, Cabinet member with responsibility for Environmental Services, said: “The fishermen have a common law right to access the bay to make their living and the council’s role is to try and strike a balance between their requirements and those of residents and visitors.

“Having spoken to local people about their concerns on last year’s arrangements, we’ve decided to move things back to the Battery, for this season.

“We’ve already got comprehensive information on how access from Oakley Road worked, so it seems sensible this time to use the Battery slipway and again to gather similar data.

“This will provide us with the information we need to make an up to date comparison between the two locations, which will help for future seasons.”