Beach huts delay

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PLANS to reintroduce beach huts in St Annes this summer have been postponed.

It is understood Natural England will need to carry out an environmental assessment because of the sensitive biological nature of the dunes.

Stuart Robertson, of the Dalmeny Hotel, was selected by Fylde Council to build the huts and has held initial talks with planners.

The plan involves moving the dune in front of the sensory garden. That dune is fairly recent, but is within the borders of a biological heritage site.

The council said it could be argued the loss of the dune would be balanced by a possible removal of invasive white poplars elsewhere in the dunes and that its other work in preserving the dunes from erosion and to protect lizards and plants elsewhere would lead to the huts having an aggregate neutral effect. However, a delay looks inevitable.

A council spokesman said: “The council is as keen as ever to see beach huts on the seafront. It now looks unlikely that they will be there this summer, but we still look forward to seeing them in time for the influx of visitors who will visit the area for the Golf Open next year. We are fully committed to the plan, but no-one can ride roughshod over environmental legislation.”

A disappointed Mr Robertson said: “We are undeterred. It has taken us six years to get this far and it gives us a bit more breathing space and time to choose the different materials.”