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Beach Office
Tommy, Tim and Rob - Foreshore Inspectors

About the Beach office:

Beach Office

The Beach Office is a front line service for water safety and public wellbeing. Staff are First Aid trained and can also deal with every eventuality from lost children to cuts bruises and questions such as “where is the best fish and chips”!

Tommy Broad, Tim Winter and Rob Dove will take it in turns to bring an update each week.

Beach Office - Tommy Broad, Foreshore InspectorBeach Office - Tim Winter, Foreshore InspectorBeach Office - Rob Dove, Foreshore Inspector

You can read Tommy's, Tim's and Rob's current blog posts on this page below:

See also: Beaches, foreshore and safety and Seafront and River Adur

You can also read Rob Dove's previous blogs here.


19th July 2019: 'Steven Seagull' visits Worthing

Beach Office - Rob Dove, Foreshore InspectorHello my name is Rob and I'm your designated blogger for this week at Worthing Beach Office.

Normally these guys are pretty bulletproof, shaking off most knocks but even the Herring Gulls robustness is no match for the common car.

Back on the blog this week after months off of it, nothing has changed and every day presents a new challenge in some form or another. As you know, at the Beach Office we occasionally work on behalf of our emergency services with various taskings, but every so often it’s our native fauna that needs rescuing, not the human kind.

We’ve probably had one a fortnight, Herring gulls are in the wars at the moment, either ingesting baited hooks complete with line and weight or suffering from impacts such as fast moving vehicles or cycles.

A concerned member of the public came into the office to report a Gull in need on the beach at West buildings shelter sporting a limp wing. I made my way down and dressing for the occasion with safety specs, gloves, a towel in hand and an animal carrier box - swooping up the dehydrated critter and safely contained it in the vented box.

Once back at base, the contained Gull was kept in our office in the shade until Wadars Animal Rescue came to collect him or her for treatment.

Wadars are a lifeline for us and always assist in taking injured animals off our coastline. For a charity they offer a fantastic service and definitely deserve a shout out.

We seem to be attracting an abundance of wildlife this year, with what seems like everything making it clear they want to live in the Boathouse or in the office. Our ‘very common’ Grey seal watches us from time to time and our resident beach Pheasant still patrols up and down between the Pier and the Lido, teasing our two resident urban foxes who I’m glad to say have now successfully received mange treatment and are looking bushier and brighter already!

Hopefully ‘Steven Seagull’ will recover quickly and be back harassing Promenaders for food in the very near future.

2019-07-19 - Seagull

Lets see what next week brings…

OVER ... OUT ...

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12th July 2019: Learning lifesaving skills

2019-07-12 - blog3

Hi I’m Naomi Tinkler. I joined the Beach Office team a couple of weeks ago, looking for a part time job over the summer to improve on my skills and experience.‌

I heard about this opportunity through Worthing College, as I chose to undertake some work experience and through one of my courses this job was offered. Immediately I was interested in what the role offered and what the team does.

After two days of work experience which I enjoyed, they mentioned an opportunity of a summer job after college. I applied online and not long after got a job interview, eventually starting once I had finished my course work and studies.

Throughout my first week, I undertook the role of pier patrols, at first having someone with me so they could help me learn the bylaws of the historic structure in it’s busiest time of the year. By my second day I was out on patrol solo!

The most interesting event to take place this week was when we had the Beaver Scouts visit a group of boys and girls at six to eight years of age. We had the quad bikes, Jet Ski, all terrain buggy and safety boats out for the children climb all over.

2019-07-12 - blog1

We gave them a little speech about our job and what we do along the beach of Worthing. Teaching them also about the international distress hand signals and how to use the many throwlines positioned all along the foreshore, just in case they ever see someone that is in need of help.

I tasked them with teaching their parents with these essential skills when they got home.

They had so much fun and they wanted to learn more, so hopefully they will come back again. I really enjoyed this day, so much fun and a chance to pass on some skills that just might save someone’s life!

2019-07-12 - blog2

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28th June 2019: What's a typical day at Worthing Beach Office? There isn't one!

Beach Office - Sylvain Clayton, Seasonal Boat Operator

Hi, I'm Sylvain Clayton, Seasonal Boat Operator, at the Beach Office.

I was approached by a member of staff at Worthing College whilst at a careers meeting about whether I wanted a job at the Beach Office. At first I thought she was joking because it seemed like an ideal opportunity and she asked me in the most offhand way I could've expected.

I applied online for the job and a matter of days later had the interview and had secured the job.

I started working the day after my exams had finished and straight away I was out on patrol on a quad bike with supervision. After two days I was out on patrol on my own and thrown in the deep end.

On my first couple of patrols, I found a fair bit of litter, two dead seagulls and poo bags that definitely did not contain dog waste!

If you were to ask me what tasks might be typical of a working day at the Beach Office, I would be hard pressed to answer that. Some days have gone from shovelling pebbles off of the cycle path at Windsor Lawns to chasing speeding jet skis in a matter of a half hour.

Most days start with a quad bike patrol on which anything can happen, though most of the time it is informing dog walkers that their pet is not allowed on the beach between Splash Point and Heene Road.

On one patrol, we cleared about 10 metres of netting that had wrapped itself around a groyne, and whilst we weren't able to save any of the fish that had been caught in it, we were able to save most of the crabs which was very satisfying.

With aspirations of following a career in the Merchant Navy, I could not have imagined a more ideal summer job, being able to soak up the sun and be working outdoors by the beach six days of the week!

Photo: Sylvain Clayton, Foreshore Inspector, on patrol

2019-06-28 - Sylvain Clayton, Foreshore Inspector, on patrol

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14th June 2019: Discarded fishing gear

Beach Office - Chris Warren, Seasonal Beach Patrol Officer

Hi, I'm Chris Warren, a Seasonal Safety Boat Operator at the Beach Office.

My background is in conservation science. I have a degree in Conservation Biology and previously worked for an organisation called Sea Shepherd as a bridge officer where we patrolled the Vaquita Refuge in Mexico, pulling up illegal gillnets and catching poachers in the act with the assistance of the Mexican Navy.

Studies suggest that half of the plastic in the ocean is composed of discarded fishing gear. This ghost gear floats freely around our oceans, wrapping around itself until it ends up a ball of skeletal mass as diverse as the life in our oceans.

Off the coast of Mexico I've pulled up dozens of illegal nets containing everything from turtle skeletons to decomposing dolphins, but no matter what you find it never gets easier to witness.

By far the hardest to witness was a decomposing leatherback turtle. It's buoyancy held the entire anchored net in suspension. The smell was unbearable as we approached, and we could feel what must have been an agonising experience for this beautiful animal. As we cut the final piece of net from around its neck the turtle inflated, we felt it catch the final breath it had struggled so desperately to catch, the way I describe it is - the soul finally left the animal. The shell opened up, staining the sea red.

Here on Worthing beach on World Ocean Day (8th June) we found several nets adrift. One with several dead dogfish, and the other predominantly spider crabs. The dogfish had very little chance of survival, but the crabs certainly seemed relieved to be free. I expected a pinch, but they were extremely docile after continuously wrapping their legs up in the net until it took us a very long time to disentangle.

Ultimately, these animals want to stay alive as much as you or I, and so for them our efforts literally mean the world. It is an incredibly satisfying feeling, and makes a big difference to the safety and future of our oceans.

We massively appreciate the help from the two members of the general public who called in the net and assisted in the disentanglement.

Photos: Discarded fishing gear

2019-06-14 - Discarded fishing gear

2019-06-14 - Discarded fishing gear on the beach

Photo: Spider Crab

2019-06-14 - Spider Crab

Photo: Dogfish

2019-06-14 - Dogfish

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7th June 2019: Learning how to patrol the beach

Beach Office - Ellie Evans, Seasonal Safety Boat Operator

Hi there, I'm Ellie Evans and I am a Seasonal Safety Boat Operator working with the Beach Office this summer.

I have come from a completely different kind of job, previously being a health care assistant, so I am enjoying this new challenge.

I have currently been working here a whole month now and have learnt lots so far. My first week included learning about the job role and what responsibilities I have in this position. I have learnt how to patrol the beach in order to prevent incidents and accidents happening before they do. Unfortunately, there was no such chance of avoiding an incident that occurred in my first week on the job...

In my first week of training I was out on patrol with my colleague Tim and was called down by a member of the public in regards to his grandad who had had a little stumble. We located the gentleman sitting at the park by the Perch in Lancing. With my medical background I assessed the gentleman's ankle, which he complained was throbbing and had been for the past couple of days.

With no visible or obvious damaged, I had advised him to keep off the ankle and to pop some ice on the affected area. Also suggesting that it was probably best that he went to his local GP for a more thorough assessment. After this we managed to get his family member to be escorted up onto the park to come and collect the gentleman. All was well and the family left with smiles all round.

So far my favourite part of the job is meeting new people every day and helping to provide a safe environment for the public to use. I also enjoy spending my time on the quad bikes patrolling the beach - this gives me the opportunity to not only patrol, but also to help clear up the beach (you will tend to see me off the quad bike and litter picking)! Currently, I am working on my level 2 powerboat qualification alongside my day to day duties.

So if you see me clearing the beach or out on patrol, be sure to come and say hello!

Ellie

2019-06-07 - Ellie Evans, Seasonal Safety Boat Operator,with one of the Beach Office Patrol ATVs

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31st May 2019: Seagull rescue!

Beach Office - Chris Warren, Seasonal Beach Patrol Officer

Hello. I'm Chris Warren, 25, from North West England. I've come to Worthing to work seasonally on Beach Patrol. I'd happily be doing something like this for nothing in return because I value the role it plays in the community and for the environment, and I also simply enjoy patrolling in such a beautiful location.

On Bank Holiday Monday (6th May 2019) we received a call out to Worthing Pier. We were briefed that a seagull had become entangled and was in distress on the pier, anchored down by something small but heavy. Myself and Rob, a Foreshore Inspector at Worthing Beach Office, responded immediately armed with a net, tin snips and a cardboard box.

Upon arrival at the end of the pier it was quickly apparent that the seagull was no longer there, as we had been advised might be the case by passing pier-goers. We noticed a few people looking over the side and sure enough there was our gull, looking rather uncomfortable.

We were not equipped to attempt a rescue from such a distance, so Rob quickly set about asking the local pier fishermen for a suitable net. Meanwhile, I kept an eye on the bird. I could see that its left wing and beak were constrained by translucent fishing line, preventing it from taking flight as well as an object holding the bird down.

Equipped with a long net capable of reaching the sea level, Rob returned with a local fisherman and begun attempting to catch the bird. As the net was lowered the bird was dragged by the strong tidal current underneath the pier, preventing Rob from controlling the position accurately whilst out of view. I moved to where I had eyes on the situation and directed Rob's efforts to catch the bird. With several near misses and a crowd massing to spectate, the pressure was on.

The net came down for a final pass under the bird as the crowd roared to heave, and up came the gull, met with cheers of relief. With the wire cut and the hook drawn out of the gull's beak, the bird looked well. I lowered the bird into the box, and with one final show of disgust as I closed the lid, it gave me a bite that almost took skin off through work gloves! I didn't hold it against the bird, I think I'd have been a bit hacked off as well if I'd taken a hook through the jaw and almost drowned entangled in plastic line.

Back at the Beach Office I took the box to the slipway where I gently opened it. Strong winds, plenty of room, perfect for take-off were it not for the box. With a stumble and a few big wing beats the gull was up soaring once again.

About five seconds later the adrenaline clearly wore off and it stalled into the sea to catch a break, but certainly seemed well enough to fly on to a full recovery. Fair winds my feathered friend.

Gulls may get on our nerves now and then, be it the deafening squawk, a barrage of guano all over our vehicles or stealing our chips, but the fact remains - These birds have character near and dear to the hearts of many of us who hail from seaside towns around the UK and even around the world, so when one is at risk of drowning you can't help but go to great lengths to end that suffering.

I've helped to rescue hundreds of animals during my work at sea; It doesn't matter if it's a colossal whale or a tiny crab, knowing you've made a difference to the environment and to the life of an animal, a life as important to it as your life is to you, is worth getting out of bed in the morning and certainly helps you sleep at night.

2019-05-10 - Releasing the seagull on the beach

2019-05-10 - Releasing the seagull on the beach - watching it fly away

Have a great weekend

Chris

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24th May 2019: Developing a programme of training and experiences

Beach Office - Tim Winter, Foreshore Inspector

Hi, I'm Tim, one of your Foreshore Inspectors at Worthing Beach Office.

I joined the team two years ago as a Seasonal Boat Operator, working the five month summer season as safety boat crew. Just over a year ago a vacancy arose for a full time Foreshore Inspector and I signed up.

Before joining the team, I had a brilliant career training and managing teams of engineers for some of the biggest and well known financial services companies in the UK.

Throughout the winter months, I have been working with Worthing College and the career placement team to develop a programme of training and experiences for students interested in a public service career.

We have hosted eight students on work experience, most of which have now applied for the summer position. It's been fantastic to see so many enthusiastic candidates who view this opportunity as a career stepping stone.

In the past week I have been delivering training courses that I wrote during the winter period, these covering the skills required to operate our all terrain vehicles, boats and jet skis. It's been great seeing the students taking the helm of the safety boat for the first time and with this comes the journey to become expert.

The training modules are based around and follow the principles set out by the RYA (Royal Yachting Association) and culminates in formal qualification.

With two more eager seasonal staff joining the team in July, the Beach Office is most certainly optimistic and excited for the summer season ahead!

Photo: Me (Tim Winter - at the right) training some of last year's staff ahead of the summer

2019-05-24 - Training session at the Beach Office

Photo: Two of our training booklets

2019-05-24 - Two of our training booklets

Photo: One of our jet skis at the Beach Office

2019-05-24 - One of our jet skis at the Beach Office

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10th May 2019: What's been appearing on the beach this week?

Beach Office - Tommy Broad, Foreshore Inspector

Hello my name is Tommy and I'm your designated blogger for this week at the beach office.

This week on the foreshore area you may have seen some construction work going on between us at the beach office and the pier this week, this is due to (WOW) Worthing observation wheel, and this is our newest seafront attraction that has been purposely built for Worthing. Once the wheel has been erected it will measure a total of 46 meters high which makes it the highest observation wheel to be placed in the south east of England.

At the start of the week we recovered a 45 gallon oil drum which had been washed up opposite Brooklands; this oil drum had emulsified oil in it due to it being in the sea for a long time. It was completely rusted over so we didn't know where it came from but we got it removed from the beach as soon as possible. We use a specialist contractor to ensure any pollution is minimised and the contents are disposed of correctly.

2019-05-10 - The 45 gallon oil drum which had been washed up on the beach opposite Brooklands

2019-05-10 - The 45 gallon oil drum close up which had been washed up on the beach opposite Brooklands

Since the start of the month we have gained another two members of staff due to the start of the summer season, Chris and Ellie.

Within the first two days we had one of the seasonal staff assist our foreshore inspector Rob dove in rescuing a sea gull that had been caught up under the pier structure and had become tangled in fishing line. Due to this they managed to rescue the bird with a local fisherman's landing net and managed to bring it back to the beach office where we decided to release the bird as it was unharmed and able to fly.

Our new staff each bring complimentary skills to our service. Chris is a marine mammal medic and he is sure to be able to put his skills to good use in his time with us.

Have a great weekend

Your foreshore inspector, Tommy Broad

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26th April 2019: Littering on the seafront

Beach Office - Rob Dove, Foreshore Inspector

Hello my name is Rob and I'm your designated blogger for this week at Worthing Beach Office.

Right under our noses, at a time when I assumed attitudes were changing and littering was seen just as socially unacceptable as not picking up mess after your dog ... it's hard to not get frustrated when littering is being done deliberately and without a care.

As you can see from the photo, the offence was committed right outside the Beach Office around our free to use deck chairs. If the culprits had been witnessed leaving the site in this state a fixed penalty notice of £50 would have been issued to them if they did not return and pick up the rubbish and dispose of it correctly.

2019-04-26 - Litter on the beach - right outside the Beach Office, around our free to use deck chairs

It really can lower morale on a sunny day when beach goers have to sit amongst rubbish blowing along the beach and into the water; adding to the plastic pandemic that is already affecting the English Channel.

All this said many of you are passing through the Beach Office, collecting litter picking equipment and helping the Council clean up drifting rubbish and detritus our sea leaves behind.

One such group that put in a herculean effort on Tuesday was the Worthing McDonald's team who walked from the pier to the Sea Lane Cafe in Goring and back, collecting a huge bounty of plastics from the tide line.

2019-04-26 - The Worthing McDonald's team with the bags of rubbish they picked up during their beach clean

It's great to see businesses based in our town taking the issue seriously and putting in the hours to assist in cleaning up litter, sadly much of which is mainly takeaway food packaging.

Speaking to the McDonald's volunteers they were keen to re-visit another time soon and keep looking into ways of reducing plastic from their packaging.

If you would like to do a beach clean as part of your work's team, please go online to the Adur & Worthing Councils' website, search 'open space events' and fill out the online form.

Alternatively, if passing the Beach Office with friends, why not come in and sign out equipment.

Help create a cleaner local marine environment and change some mindsets along the way.

OVER ... OUT ...

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19th April 2019: Pier of the Year, boat ramps, Easter and deckchairs

Beach Office - Tommy Broad, Foreshore Inspector

Hello my name is Tommy and I'm your designated blogger for this week at Worthing Beach Office.

This week on the Foreshore scene the big news is that we have won Pier of the Year. It's the second that we've won the award with the first being in 2006. This of course got quite a lot of attention, and on Monday we had BBC television crews coming down to film on our pier for that evening's showing.

Along with our prime pier of the year, the boat ramps along the seafront have been cleared by excavators ready for the summer season. Allowing myself and the rest of the team to have better access to the sea from the beaches during our busiest period of the year.

One of these ramps is at the Beach Office so that we can start our summer water patrols, another is at the Worthing Sailing Club and the last is at Alinora Crescent in Goring where the public are allowed to launch their personal vessels from.

With the Easter weekend approaching alongside some warmer weather, we at the Beach Office have been servicing our vehicles and inspecting our equipment so that they are in their best conditions for the coming summer months. We have also been prepping training manuals for our seasonal staff that will be joining us from the first week of May for a week of intensive training.

Also joining us this week for the first time since the end of last summer are Worthing's beach deckchairs! Free to the public between the pier and the lido area, they will be available between 9am and 5pm at our office. All we ask is that you return them home.

Another addition to our seafront are the new big black bins which are situated along the promenade. We ask that when leaving the beach you please take all your rubbish with you and use these provided bins, as we want to keep our beaches as clean as we can for your pleasure and also for the safety of our treasured marine life.

Have an amazing Easter weekend!

You can find out more about our pier here:

Your Foreshore Inspector, Tommy Broad

2019-04-18 - A deckchair on the beach with Worthing Pier in the background

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