As a resident of Seaside Drive, I find it exceptionally disheartening to read the September 9 letter from Mr. Adams, criticizing the state of Flea Beach and the efforts of the Sheringham Point Lighthouse Preservation Society.
In response to his concerns regarding a bear, we live in a rural, semi-wilderness and I suspect bear dens, even cougar dens, are quite a common occurrence in the area, although many go unnoticed. We are living on Vancouver Island in shared territory with all types of wildlife.
In addition, I must object to Mr. Adams’ criticism of the SPLPS. There is no other group that does more for our local community than the Sheringham Point Lighthouse Preservation Society. The society, and its volunteers, take care of Flea Beach, and for the past five years have also cared for the local Lighthouse Trail. They are responsible for protecting the land surrounding the lighthouse and are working hard to preserve the community’s beautiful lighthouse, ensuring an important piece of history and a spectacular, natural location are saved for future generations.
Like any good organization, the society asked local residents how they envisioned the future of the Flea Beach area and then created a plan from that consultation. The result of that consultation was that many of the local residents asked that the beach remain natural and open as it has for the last 40 years; no tables, benches or amenities. Most of the residents wanted the driveway fixed and the trees that were cut down replanted. A tree that did pose a danger, hanging over the driveway, was recently cut down.
Everyone understands that when work on a public area is done correctly (after the community input and proper approvals), it will take a bit more time to complete – but it’s being done to benefit all members of the community.
In the 11 years we have lived on Seaside Drive, Flea Beach has been an unspoiled (until someone illegally cut down trees) perfect sandy cove from which to launch boats, picnic or just walk. That is part of its charm. Manicuring the acreage, would, aside from enhancing some people’s view of the ocean, alter the whole tone and would lead to the need for more upkeep than if left natural.
Thanks to all the SPLPS volunteers for helping make Shirley a better place to live.
Alison and John Quinn