Please take a second to consider some or all of the facts before saying no.
I appreciate it is very easy to make a knee jerk emotional decision against waterskiing and wakeboarding on the estuary, but please consider everything in the round.
First of all we have a big problem. Nearly everyone knows about the potentially mortal dangers of the unregulated free for all that is Starehole Bay. Our children are trying wakeboarding in the most dangerous conditions. This has to be changed.
For many years we had the much larger area of Bar Lodge, in the estuary, available for water skiing. Even during that time some very serious accidents happened in Starehole bay. Since then, skiing on Bar Lodge has been stopped, and now Starehole Bay is even worse.
We are looking to solve all of these problems. By re-introducing skiing back into the estuary, under the umbrella of the BWSF and an organised ski club, we can make skiing in and around our estuary far better and safer. For decades nothing has been done to address these very serious issues.
Even when Bar Lodge was available, it wasn´t ideal and there were calls for a flat water ski area further inland, so we would like to support this area with a flat water skiing resource at Widegates. This will provide a world class flat water ski area for locals and visitors alioke. Elevating Salcombe and Kingsbridge to the level it should be.
We have consulted with all the environmentalist in the area, highlights include scientific studies that prove that birdlife are not disturbed significantly beyond a distance of 50m from a boat. The main blight on the environment in the upper estuary are the algal blooms, the passge of the boat through the water has actually been shown to help in this area. Boats will have to have four stroke or etec 2 strokes, far quieter than ever before. Plus only one boat at a time will ski - so the water remains perfectly calm for the skier. Skiing is restricted around HW, and not on Satrudays when there is racing. Further time restrictions may be put in place if need be.
Tha area we are talking about is the same length as from the Ferry Inn as to South Sands Hotel....and only one boat at a time. A huge area for one boat. The entire space is 1% of the estuary and we only want to use it 1/5th of the time. And again there will only be one boat in that space....
The area will retain all of its essential character, no one will likely no we are there...or that we have been there. Ultimately we will have much better and safer places to ski. Which will our area more attractive to tourists (essential for the economy) and far safer than the current unregulated free for all (essential to stop another fatal accident).
Please think carefully before making a decision, the current situation is a mess and we all need to work together to fix it. Our proposals are the best and possibly only way to sort the problem. Please work with us to improve our plans for the benefit of everyone.
Here is a link to the petition FOR the ski areas, including a video made by ITV news on the issues and dangers. http://chn.ge/1pM8DKY
Thanks and kind regards,