Application goes before planning committee at Barnstaple Rugby Club tomorrow (Wednesday) from 10am

Plans for a controversial pay-on-exit barrier at Saunton Sands car park are recommended for approval when they come before planners tomorrow (Wednesday).

Saunton Beach Enterprises is applying for an Automatic Number Plate Recognition System and equipment including barriers, cameras and pay-stations.

Campaigners had protested against the initial proposed charges of £2 for the first hour and £1.50 per hour thereafter, with a locals’ discount of half price for an initial £50 season ticket.

Thousands have signed a petition opposing the plans and the council has received 473 letters of objection.

But a report to North Devon Council’s planning committee, held at Barnstaple Rugby Club tomorrow at 10am, says the fees charged are a matter for the operator and not a planning consideration.

It recommends approval subject to a 1.5-metre-wide gap to allow bridleway access.