With a lack of cash machines and closed park-andrides, residents expressed fears that tourism in Lyme Regis may suffer unless something is done.
Lyme Regis Town Council has been urged to take “emergency action” as the town’s infrastructure struggled to cope with an increased number of visitors over this year’s spree of Bank Holiday weekends – raising fears that local businesses may miss out on the domestic tourism boom.
Holidaymakers over the last May bank holiday weekend arrived to find park-and-rides closed, non-functioning cash points and the women’s toilets out-of-use on Marine Parade, where the town’s amusement arcade is situated.
Residents took to social media to criticise the problems, with one person saying there might as well have been “Lyme Regis closed” signs on the entrances to the town.
Adding urgency to the calls, the seaside town has recently seen growth in visitors as more Britons look to take holidays within the country.
Pointing to the lack of cash machines, concerns were also expressed that local businesses and traders – particularly amusement arcades, which rely on ATMs – will suffer as a result of bad infrastructure and may not be able to
take advantage of the rise in tourist numbers.
Lyme Regis’ Lloyds Bank closed last month leaving the town with just one free ATM outside Tesco Express, but this was out of order for part of the Bank Holiday weekend.
“It is unacceptable there were no working cash points in the town over the Bank Holiday weekend and understandably this has caused a lot of frustration and inconvenience for residents, visitors and businesses,” said deputy town clerk Mark Green.
Lyme Regis Amusements Arcade owner and town councillor George Symonds has been pushing to improve infrastructure and tackle untidiness. In a council meeting in April he requested large wheelie bins for the seafront to aid with the town’s increasing waste collection problems.