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‘Things have really deteriorated’: Visitors say Clam Harbour facilities in need of repair

Clam Harbour Beach Provincial Park is a popular spot for surfers, swimmers and those just looking to relax or play in the sand. It’s also well known for its annual Clam Harbour Sand Castle Competition.

While many people flock to the beach for its beauty, they say the facilities are less impressive.

Surfer Al MacGillivray will often make the two-hour journey from his place to the beach in order to catch some waves, but he says it’s been disappointing to see the lack of maintenance to the amenities.

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“It seems like the last couple of years things have really deteriorated; doesn’t look like there’s as much money to put towards the infrastructure,” he said.

“A lot of the washroom facilities and change facilities are kind of run down. It doesn’t look like anything is kept up.”

The province’s website for Clam Harbour Beach advertises washrooms, change rooms and showers.

The facilities are all in place, but there’s currently no running water flowing through any of the taps or showers.

“Running water is very important, you know, for hand sanitation, food safety, washing your feet after coming from the beach,” said Mary Andrews who visits the beach annually for a family picnic.

She, too, says things have been deteriorating over the past few years.

“I noticed the boardwalk the last couple of years is starting to deteriorate,” she said.

“It’s disheartening because it’s a great family beach.”

Similar concerns were raised about facilities at Lawrencetown Beach, another provincial park. At the beginning of the summer a group of volunteers got together and repainted the Beach House themselves.

“The beach house here at Lawrencetown has been neglected for the last five years,” said John Fluke at the time. “We decided to take it upon ourselves since the government wasn’t doing anything to paint the shed.”

Kevin Murphy is the MLA for the Eastern Shore and says Clam Harbour, Lawrencetown and Rainbow Haven are all part of a larger redevelopment plan to improve infrastructure, with Lawrencetown beach the furthest along.

“They all have infrastructure put in place in early to mid ’80s, all at the end of their lifespan.”

A public meeting for the new developments at Lawrencetown Beach was held in June, Murphy says a similar meeting is being planned for Clam Harbour as well. As for the running water issue, the department of Lands and Forestry says in this case the water holding tank was drained because a tap in the picnic park was left open.

READ MORE: Thousands attend Clam Harbour Beach Sandcastle Competition (Aug. 20, 2017)

Murphy admits that water supply is an ongoing issue in the area because everything is on well water, and wells going dry is not uncommon for the area this time of year.

“We certainly recognize that and the park is in the early stages of a redevelopment plan. We’re conscious of these things and are doing our best to repair and keep these things up and running,” he said.

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