Concern for beach users
ACCORDING to surf club members, you need to get on your hands and knees to access Minnie Water beach from Nip Welsh Park.
Prone to erosion, the water has eaten away the earth between the Minnie Water Surf Life Saving Club and the ocean many times, but according to a representative from the club, it's in a dangerous state right now. "We've had a lot of erosion at the front of the club," they said. With Nippers season just around the corner, the club is concerned that children, parents and grandparents may be harmed as they try to gain access to the beach.
"At the moment, people who are not completely fit and able-bodied cannot access the beach," they said. "It's well over a metre drop off."
The club has been in negotiations with Clarence Valley Council for a number of months, but the spokesperson said they keep hitting brick walls.
"We're asking council to try and address our access problems," they said.
"Surf Life Saving Australia NSW and Australia has a policy of inclusion and diversity, everyone needs the ability to access the beach.
"Kids could fall down, older people could lose their balance. If you're not 100% mobile it's not a good idea."
The spokesperson added the vehicle access, which is acting as the main access to the beach, is not in good shape.
"You can walk up further north, but the access is not much better," they said.
Clarence Valley Council natural resource coordinator Reece Luxton said over the past 12 months, council has used sand from surrounding beaches to replenish the access area.
"But the repairs have been short-lived because subsequent high tides have taken the sand away," he said. "Council is working with the Solitary Island Marine Park Authority, which has responsibility for the intertidal zone, and the Yaegl people, who are the native title owners of the beach, in an attempt to find a long-term solution. "Until that happens there is access via the formed vehicle ramp to the south of the clubhouse."