Menace of scooter riders along cliff top

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On Sunday 24th August hundreds of scooter fans descended on Eastbourne.

The majority of these simply wanted to enjoy the good weather while indulging in some 1960s nostalgia, a time when hordes of scooter riding mods regularly flocked to the South Coast.

Unfortunately, up to around 100 of scooter riders put themselves and others in danger by going off road to race up and down and along the grass between the road and the cliffs between Birling Gap and Beachy Head.

It was a Bank Holiday Sunday so the area had attracted many tourists and local people wanting to enjoy the peace and tranquillity of this beautiful stretch of coast.

Instead they found themselves having to compete for space with scooters racing back and forth along the cliffs, sometimes within five meters of the cliff edge. The air was full of petrol fumes and the sound of revving engines. Mindless scooter riders with lunatic grins did not give a damn about others wishing to enjoy the views. A skid on the grassy surface could easily have led to death and injury to people, including families and children, walking along the cliffs. Clearly it is illegal to ride/drive a powered vehicle along the cliffs.

I reported the matter to the police, but for some reason they choose to ignore this threat to the health and safety. Was this because police resources were stretched beyond limit quelling large scale riots in suburban Eastbourne or that they were dealing with multiple bank raids? Or was it because the income generated from scooter fanatics has a priority over the safety of other members of the general public? I am not sure what was worse, irresponsible scooter riders or sleeping police officers.

Peter Calladine

Lewes