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Statement from Puxton Park over lone adults ban

Most of the attractions at Puxton Park are geared to under 7s Credit: ITV News

The Managing Director of Puxton Park in North Somerset has issued a statement following a complaint that the attraction has banned single adults without children from entry on child protection grounds.

This has been blown out of all proportion. The main aspect not being reported is that Puxton Park is predominantly an attraction for children aged 0 years to 7 years with 90% of the park dedicated fully to child’s play, which is not suitable for lone adults.

“Some adults may be interested in our falconry department and we offer falconry experience days which are open to all. We have not set out to discriminate against single adults but we take child protection extremely seriously.

We would rather be over zealous when unaccompanied adults visit us armed with cameras than put children at any potential risk. Even schools follow similar policies with regards to the photography of children.

Our members fully support our decisions and we have received nothing but praise for our policy including positive feedback from a Child Protection Specialist, who commended us for our child protection principals.

Within seven years we have only had one complaint about this policy from the gentlemen last week.

At the time of setting the policy the other parks within the area had a similar stance to us. I have spoken to two or three similar client-based parks this morning and they still have the same policy as we do. I’m not going to name names as it’s unprofessional of me to do so.

In light of this coverage we will look at what other parks are doing with their admissions policy, speak to our customers and review.

– Alistair Mead Managing Director of Puxton Park

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Weston's Sand Sculpture festival is under threat

There are fears that sculptures like this will not be returning to Weston-super-Mare next year Credit: ITV News

Weston-super-Mare's popular Sand Sculpture festival may not return to the seafront next year unless it gets sponsorship.

Organisers say it costs around £30,000 to set the event up. They are also looking to improve security and even to include an education centre on site.

The annual festival - which brings in sculptors from across the world - is a big attraction for the seaside town.

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ITV tackles a tonne of water to see the power of the sea

The RNLI has begun a "Respect the Water" campaign in the West Country. 32 lives were lost on the south west coast last year and it wants beach-goers and surfers to take more care.

The RNLI shows the sheer power of the sea by challenging the ITV team (and friends) to move a tonne of water Credit: ITV News/James Chapman

Hopes for a better 2013 for tourism industry

2012 was a tough year for tourism in the South West. The Olympic effect, the difficult economic climate and unsettled weather resulted in a 6% national drop in rural domestic trips and 2% drop in longer domestic breaks. That impact has been felt across the industry, but there’s little doubt that the impact has been the least on businesses that have continued to invest in excellence – in their infrastructure, their people, their marketing, their skills. Those are the kind of businesses that win tourism awards and I invite them all to enter.”

– Robin Barker, Awards Co-ordinator
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