Don't miss a story sign up to the North Devon Gazette's FREE daily newsletter CLICK HERE

Pictures: Community spirit cleans up at Hele

PUBLISHED: 22:47 02 February 2014 | UPDATED: 12:43 03 February 2014

Beachside Cafe owners Alex Campbell and Kim Hitchins praised the community spirit that helped to spare their premises from serious flooding.

Beachside Cafe owners Alex Campbell and Kim Hitchins praised the community spirit that helped to spare their premises from serious flooding.

Archant

Coastal community clears up after promenade and businesses take a pounding from the sea.

The high tides at Hele Bay on Sunday morning. Picture: Jay Joachim. The high tides at Hele Bay on Sunday morning. Picture: Jay Joachim.

THE owners of the Cafe Beachside at Hele in Ilfracombe have praised the community spirit of friends and neighbours who turned out on Saturday night to save their business from the sea.

People braved the crashing waves last night in a frantic bid to keep the roadside drains clear of seaweed and debris to prevent major flooding.

The power of the tidal surge saw Tarmac ripped from the road, promenade bench and planters tossed about and damage to the front of a Beachside Holiday Park building.

Alex Campbell and Kim Hitchins, who bought the café last year, were expecting a struggle after similar scenes with the big tides in early January.

The sea front at Hele Bay took a pounding. The sea front at Hele Bay took a pounding.

“We knew from previous experience we had to keep the drains free of kelp otherwise the water has nowhere else to go,” said Alex.

“We were out here with the help of a lot of our neighbours, for about two-and-a-half hours, getting battered. Not that I condone people coming down to the promenade in that, but we would have flooded otherwise.

“The power of the waves was incredible, at one point I was standing on a piece of Tarmac and could feel myself moving up the street - it was a pretty hairy, pretty dangerous night. But we did not really have any major damage – we lost a tea cup and mug, plus a couple of plant pots.

“We had a really good turn out, a good community spirit and some really experienced people who have lived by the sea their entire lives, we managed to keep each other safe.”

Debris, seaweed and chunks of Tarmac broken up by the waves at Hele Bay, Debris, seaweed and chunks of Tarmac broken up by the waves at Hele Bay,

Residents are now worried the promenade wall at Hele is about to give way, after the weekend’s storms left a large crack running along its length.

Other News Stories

32 minutes ago

Justeen Easton has been nominated for a Pride of Britain Award, after setting up a charity for grieving families in memory of her daughter Ellie.

Read more
Yesterday, 19:10

Amelia Womack, deputy leader of The Green Party, has been helping the candidates canvass for forthcoming Braunton district and parish council by elections

Read more
Yesterday, 13:03

Station near Lynton is crowned champion for best community engagement at the SuperStation Awards 2017

Read more
Yesterday, 11:35

Route 39 Academy’s new free school building is set to open in September next year, and this week supporters gathered for a traditional topping out ceremony at Steart Farm.

Read more
Yesterday, 11:02

We have compiled nine snaps of snow-hit towns and villages across Devon and are challenging you to name them all correctly.

Read more
Wed, 17:30

With Hugh Grant playing Jeremy Thorpe in a new BBC drama being filmed at Chittlehampton this month, former assistant agent Peter Bray recalls the real Jeremy Thorpe behind the headlines

Read more
Wed, 16:28

The A361 Link Road was closed in Barnstaple due to reports of a man on the wrong side of the railings on Rumsam Bridge.

Read more
Wed, 16:17

Do you agree with plans for a new ‘Devonwall’ constituency? See what other Gazette readers think here and take part in our poll.

Read more
Wed, 15:10

Police and an ambulance were called to Broad Street in Ilfracombe last night (Tuesday) after an incident outside of The Sandpiper Inn.

Read more
Wed, 15:02

The owners of The Tavern in Barnstaple hope to convert an unused part of historic pub into maisonette, hostel and managers flat.

Read more

Local Weather

Heavy Rain

Heavy Rain

max temp: 14°C

min temp: 11°C

Most Read News

Useful Links

Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Subscribe to the paper
Competitions
North Devon Football League
Order Photos
Family notices
iwitness24
Facebook
Twitter
Google Plus Page
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Read Online

Image
Read the North Devon Gazette e-edition E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter
HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Local business directory

North Devon's trusted business finder

Find planning applications