Page last updated at 11:48 GMT, Wednesday, 22 July 2009 12:48 UK

Patrol warning to beach naturists

Cefn Sidan Beach
Cefn Sidan is one of the most popular beaches in west Wales

Naturists have been warned that they are not welcome on a seven-mile long beach which is popular with families.

Police and rangers will patrol during summer in uniforms and plain clothes at Cefn Sidan in Carmarthenshire, and CCTV will also be used.

"No Nudism" signs have been defaced, and officials say the area is attracting both those with sexual motives and genuine naturists.

British Naturism said the authorities should work with them.

Carmarthenshire council, which manages the beach and the nearby Pembrey Country Park, said naturists had been visiting Cefn Sidan since the 1960s, but nudism was not and never had been permitted.

An area of Morfa Dyffryn, near Barmouth in Gwynedd, is the only official nude sunbathing area in Wales.

Carmarthenshire council said its rangers and police had received complaints about the behaviour of some visitors.

Many of the visitors have travelled from other parts of the country attracted by misinformation on websites and blogs
Clive Scourfield

Executive board member Clive Scourfield said it was a serious matter which the council had to address most summers.

"The council have signs which have been vandalised.

"No Nudism signs have had the 'No' scrubbed out. All the literature makes it clear no nudism or naturism is allowed.

"We are fully co-operating with the police and organising regular patrols and new signage.

"Disturbingly many of the visitors have travelled from other parts of the country attracted by misinformation on websites and blogs and less salubrious magazines and sites.

"There is even information on how to get to there from Irish ferry ports and trails highlighted through the forestry.

"Cefn Sidan might be a wide expanse of seven miles of beach and dunes but it also attracts thousands of visitors, families and their children, who use the whole of the beach - which is part of its attraction."

Naturists are just like anyone else - very tolerant and considerate and understanding
British Naturism spokesman

Pembrey and Burry Port police officer PC Vanessa Vaughan said: "The public need to know that we will respond to any incidents reported.

"I have met with the park management and agreed to make regular patrols with rangers with officers in uniform and plain clothes.

"I also have access to CCTV cameras to record any offences."

Social nudity

But British Naturism said the council and police needed to differentiate between genuine naturists and those with a different or sexual motive.

A spokesman said naturism was purely about enjoying the outdoors without wearing clothes.

"What I would want everyone to understand is being naked in a public place is not against the law," he added.

"Social nudity is perfectly legal anywhere."

But he added naturists did not want to cause offence to others.

"Naturists are just like anyone else - very tolerant and considerate and understanding," he said.

"If people are using that beach for sexual motives we are just as keen as anyone to stop that sort of behaviour."



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SEE ALSO
Naturists lose battle for beach
27 Apr 09 |  Suffolk
Nudists stray as signs go missing
30 Apr 07 |  North West Wales
Beach signs leave naturists cold
02 Jun 08 |  Humber
Wales has first nudist beach
16 May 00 |  Wales
Naturists hold beach try-out days
05 Jul 06 |  England

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