Burry Port: Fishermen facing 'an uncertain future' as marina enters administration

Credit: ITV Cymru Wales

Burry Port Marina has entered administration, leaving the community facing an uncertain future.

Administrators say they will "continue to operate it" while they "consider what to do".

But the people who rely on it for their livelihoods are already feeling the pinch, with many worried about their future.

Geoffrey Flemming has been fishing in the harbour for 50 years. He said: "It's just beyond, what's happening here.

"I've even been thinking of packing the fishing up because of everything.

"At the moment it's been in such a state that's it's difficult to come out close to bottom water because of all the muck. There's even grass growing on the mud out here.

He continued: "You'd think with the state it's in with the boats not floating all the time, the moorings would be cheaper, but they've gone up this year.

"Let's get it back to normal, we just can't go on like this."

Carmarthenshire Council says it's continuing to speak to the local community and various stakeholders.

Carmarthenshire County Council have been helping adminstrators to find a stable operator to take over the running of the marina.

Adrian Davies' family have had a boat in the harbour for years, he said: "My brother was a commercial fisherman, he passed away 2 years ago, and I took over the running of the boat.

"The harbour, it's pretty much unusable. On low tides you can't get out. You're limited on time

"There's nowhere else round here, you've either got to travel to Swansea or there's no where else.

He says the harbour is like "the heart of Burry Port" and is "so busy in the summer". But he fears the council wants to "wash their hands of it".

Mr Davies said: "Who knows who's gonna take it over? because it needs so much money spent on it."

Discussions have also been taking place to decide what immediate and ongoing work needs to happen to make sure the marina remains viable.

Martin Tummuscheit runs a boat maintenance business and says he's seen the quality of work "drop off".

"We can't get as much for our business," he said. "If the marina is working well then the business flourishes with it.

"For me it's sad to see. I've been Burry Port born and bred and to see where it's going is not good at the moment.

"Everybody's doing their best to keep going here and it's helping us tick along but it's the difference between ticking along and doing well.

He added: "I really hope the outcome will be that someone will take over and bring it back to a standard that the area deserves."

Administrators say it's likely the process of finding someone to take over will continue into 2024.

But it's not just the fisherman who need the harbour. Meryl Trussler lives in the area and is worried about a "knock on affect" on the local economy.

She said: "We love coming as a family, we come at least three times a week. It's ingrained in us now we just love coming down here.

"This is a lovely attraction for tourists and if that stops then it could have an affect on local businesses, families like us who come down.

The situation is "not a quick fix" says Matthew Richards, a partner with Azets and joint administrator. 

“It is likely that this process will continue into 2024. The  continued cooperation of all stakeholders is appreciated.”

Cllr. Hazel Evans, Carmarthenshire County Council’s Cabinet Member for Regeneration, Leisure, Culture and Tourism says they're continuing to speak to local community and stakeholders.

She said the council is "committed to finding a long term, sustainable future for Burry Port Harbour."

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