Sea Plane lands in Littlehampton Harbour

Sunday, 27th July saw a very busy one-day Littlehampton Water Front Festival organised by Littlehampton Harbour Board. This year’s event proved enormously popular with locals and visitors alike.  Much credit must go to Littehampton Harbour Master Billy Johnson and his wonderful team for creating such a carnival atmosphere despite all the ongoing construction works of Littlehampton’s sea defences.

The event which included an open day at Littlehampton’s RNLI with visiting RNLI boats from neighbouring stations; dingy sailing, swimming racing and many other attractions, however the real star of the show as the arrival of a Sea Plane which after a fly over landed to a round of applause in the River Arun.

Littlehampton harbourboard staff

Littlehampton Water Front Festival was compared by Keith Croft a well-known and much-loved master of ceremonies for Littlehampton events. Keith the crowd updated and entertained throughout the day with up-to-the-minute information on what was happening. Above Keith is announcing the arrival of the sea plane.

Littlehampton Sea Plane 2

The Sea plane arrives and touches the water briefly before heading back out again for its final landing approach. The plane, a Cessna C182R is a single engined aircraft which can land both on water and runways. Owned and piloted by Captain John Russell, this plane is a familiar aircraft in the Solent and the Isle of Wight areas.

Littlehampton sea plane

If you look closely at the yacht’s rigging you can see the seaplane coming in to land.


Just about to touch down.


Touching down.


Safely down. Note the trolley like wheels at the front of the floats. Under the floats the landing gear allows this plane to land on traditional runway surfaces as well as water.

Littlehampton Sea plane 6

Harbour staff assist the plane and tow it to the pontoons where everyone could get a closer look.

Littlehampton Waterfront Festival crowds

This year’s event certainly managed to pull the crowds to Littlehampton and everyone I spoke to (or overheard) were loud in their praise for the interesting and enjoyable event this was and much credit again to Billy and the team at Littlehampton Harbour Board for putting on such a great day’s entertainment.

Littlehampton Waterfront Festival crowds 1

Crowds enjoying Littlehampton’s Waterfront Festival

Waterfront Festival view

All the visiting boats were open to the public to have a wander around and see what the inside of a lifeboat looks like and chat to the friendly RNLI crew who were manning the vessels.

Waterfront Festival patrol vessel

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Rubbish, by Arun District Council.

Who would have thought that with £14million being spent on a regeneration project in Pier Road and surrounding environs that the simple matter of providing alternative public bins would prove such a great hurdle for the collective, well-paid, (in my view often over-indulged) senior management at Arun District Council?

Here’s the facts.

1. October 21st 2013 The Environment Agency move into Pier Road and Arun Parade and close it to vehicular traffic.

2. The Contractors remove the street furniture including the bins.

3. No alternative bins were provided.

At every stakeholder meeting since then the issue of lack of bins has been raised and at every meeting we’ve had the same update – ‘it’s been looked into..’

Given that this is a pre-planned capital expenditure project with a whole host of well-paid professionals to oversee it’s delivery, you’d imagine that someone would have thought about providing bins? Sadly not. Thus it became necessary for myself to continually tweet pictures of rubbish strewn areas – particularly in and around the Oyster Pond and the North end of Pier Road. At one point it go so bad that I undertook street cleaning myself only to be told by the bureaucrats at Arun District Council that the reason that their operatives weren’t cleaning Pier Road is that it was already cleaned.

So I stopped my daily sweeping and instead watched as the daily gathering of morose street cleaners arrived to push the dirt around in the sea breezes.

If you’ve seen Arun’s grass contractors who blow the grass cuttings all over the place – including into the side of your car, your property, yourself as you walked past, you’ll be familiar with what I’m describing.

So back to the bins.

Arun finally (after 8 months) decided to provide extra bins at the Oyster Pond. The delay in providing them was explained to me by an Arun employee who said that the ‘bloke who authorizes the bins is off sick and it could take up to 10 weeks as there’s a backlog..’

So finally when the staff member was well enough to attend to what is after all Arun District Council’s statutory duty, some extra bins were provided at the Oyster Pond.

But what about Pier Road North?

If you’re not familiar Pier Road North is the area outside out shop, Coastal Cycles, The Mooring’s Tea rooms and also extends really to the new Riverside Walkway where the harbour board offices are located.

As Pier Road’s waterside is effectively closed to the public, this area has become an alternative area for the public to sit and eat fish and chips, ice cream as well as a crabbing area for children.

So, it would make sense would it not for Arun to provide bins in this area? I’m reluctant to use the words ‘additional bins’ as this is misleading – remember all Pier Road and Arun Parade’s additional bins were removed by the contractor – so contrary to Arun’s claims in its tweets – we’re not asking for ‘additional bins’ were asking for alternative bins.

After much behind the scenes communications, a tweet finally from Arun District Council to announce that they’re unable to provide bins in this area as the land is owned by the Harbour board. They have, however, to their credit increased the collections of the existing bin. But obviously, more bins are needed.

Next week we hopefully will see a much-needed influx of visitors to Littlehampton, which will generate its own share of additional rubbish including food wrapping, and all the debris that goes with visitors to the seaside.

Yet Arun cannot provide enough bins as the land is owned by the Harbour Board.

And have Arun actually bothered to ask the Harbour Board would they mind if they erected some temporary bins?

And have Arun actually bothered to ask the scheme contractors would they accommodate some bins at the entrances to their site?

No of course not.

Far easier for this collective group of over-paid clowns to give what could only be described as the most bizarre explanation for doing nothing, and be grossly misleading in the process as the pictures below demonstrate.


A familiar and entirely unacceptable scene in the regenerated area of Littlehampton.

Note please, that the above bin (you’ll see a close-up of it in a moment) clearly belongs to Arun as it’s got the Arun District Council Logos. However, Arun District Council are refusing to put additional (temporary) bins in this area as the land is owned by the Harbour Board, which incidentally is also a partner in the current regeneration scheme.


Rubbish stacking up in Littlehampton as Arun’s over-paid bureaucrats are powerless to act, save for pumping out nonsense reasons as to why they can do nothing.


Here’s the bin, clearly marked ‘Arun District Council’ which sits next to the sea-shell recipe holder, which is another Arun District Council creation/idea both of which sit on Harbour Board Land.

That’s two pieces of Arun District Council’s street furniture cited on Harbour Land where they now say they’re unable to place a bin here as it’s own by the Harbour Board…

Who are these clowns trying to kid with their tweet



When clearly they have already a bin on Harbour board land, a sea shell recipe placard, a dog poo bin and a bench!

Not forgetting of course, their own award. This award received by the then Chairman of Arun District Council for conservation of their newly created Riverside Walkway. Imagine an award for conservation, but they can’t put a blasted bin on the area! And, the real irony is that they embed their clearly ill-deserved award into the Harbour Board’s wall!


Why is providing much-needed alternative bins (to replace the ones that have been removed during the construction process) so difficult for Arun District Council?

Pier Road North needs additional bins.

So, Arun, can we please finally have some?

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