Gwynedd residents criticise 'diabolical' new beach access as ladder installed in place of ramp

Gwynedd Council confirmed the ladder is a temporary safety measure, while the details of a more permanent replacement for the old ramp are being thought out. Credit: Media Wales

People have reacted with anger to the "diabolical" new, temporary access route onto the seafront in Criccieth, Gwynedd, after the old ramp was destroyed in a storm.

Several people spoke out on social media after a vertical metal ladder appeared, linking the promenade to the shore.

Urgent seafront repairs were commissioned at the beach when winter storms damaged sea barriers and a concrete public access ramp. A wooden groyne has since been repaired and in recent weeks the eastern beach has recovered much of the sand previously washed away.

Gwynedd Council is currently considering various access options to replace the now-demolished ramp and said the ladder has been installed as a safety measure.

However residents took to social media to complain that many cannot enjoy access to the beach while waiting for a more permanent solution.

Winter storms damaged sea barriers and a concrete public access ramp at the seafront in Criccieth. Credit: Media Wales

One woman posted online: “I can’t believe what I’ve just seen. Instead of replacing the old ramp the council has installed this! Utterly disgraceful!”Others wondered how young families, dog owners and people with mobility issues would be able to climb down. A pensioner, aged 74, claimed it was an “accident waiting to happen”, another resident labelled it “diabolical”.The old ramp was demolished for health and safety reasons as it was considered "beyond reconstruction".

Dr Catrin Jones, clerk of Criccieth Town Council, said that in the absence of a beach ramp, the ladder was installed purely as a safety measure to prevent people getting trapped by the incoming tide.

She said: “Concern had been expressed by the Coastguard and RNLI about the vulnerability of beach users when the tide comes in.

"We are continuing to press for a replacement beach ramp but we have been informed by Gwynedd Council that it needs to apply for funds before any work can be done.”

Gwynedd Council said it is currently looking at options for the design and location of a new ramp for future beach access. Credit: Media Wales

Gwynedd Council confirmed the new ladder is a temporary installation to prevent beachgoers being trapped by the incoming tide.

A spokesperson said: “Following essential repair work to the main groyne at the eastern end of Criccieth beach and the recent removal of the collapsed access ramp, a new ladder has been installed on the sea wall as a temporary measure to provide an escape route in an emergency."New signage will also be positioned within the next few weeks. The council is currently considering different options regarding the design, location and construction of any future beach access.”