Red tape and spiralling costs has resulted in the end of the popular Mullion Surf Life Saving Club.
The club said it was “with regret” that it had been unable to form a committee to keep going at its annual general meeting.
It suffered a particular blow in February when the clubhouse was destroyed by storms and heavy waves. The steps were damaged and the contents of the clubhouse, including lifesaving equipment, were washed away, at an estimated cost of £7,000.
Jan Willey, ex secretary, said in a statement from the club: “The small committee has worked hard to get the club up and running again over the past five years and they are proud of what has been achieved, but sadly this latest blow in terms of the storm-damage sustained to both the hut and the equipment, and the total dedicated commitment needed for such a long-term project is too much for such a small committee to overcome.
“It has become increasingly difficult over the past few years to meet the huge commitment needed in terms of the necessary training for both coaching and health and safety requirements that have to be met as legal requirements to operate.”
The committee acknowledged that fundraising to replace the damaged equipment would not be a problem, as they had already had enquiries from various local organisations offering to help.
However, with all the health and safety regulations that now had to be adhered to, together with the limited number of surf coaches, the problem of trying to enrol people onto training courses that would involve much time and travel, the ongoing commitment of the coaches to be on the beach for every training session and the situation of the clubhouse – plus the fact that Cornwall Council now insisted on a five-year commitment from the club to lease the building and operate the toilet, before they would undertake any repair work – it had all become a “huge responsibility” that the small committee was “not able to surmount.”
Former chairman Mark Tonkin thanked everyone who had given their support to the club over the past five years, including the RNLI lifeguards, Cornwall Council, Surf Life Saving GB, Cornwall Surf Life Saving, all the Boxing Day swimmers and helpers, everyone who had donated funds for the club over the years, and last but not least, all the young members who made it “so worthwhile.”