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Rubbish left on Greatstone Beach, New Romney, following 'cookout' event

This is the aftermath of a huge beach party that saw hundreds of people descend on the Kent coast, prompting a police response.

Police were called to the event at Greatstone near New Romney last night where hundreds of people gathered for the 'cook out' - four officers were injured responding to an altercation nearby.

Rubbish left on Greatstone beach after a party. Picture:Pd Photography
Rubbish left on Greatstone beach after a party. Picture:Pd Photography
Broken glass left on the roads near the beach Picture:Pd Photography
Broken glass left on the roads near the beach Picture:Pd Photography

Residents have told how they have discovered human waste in carrier bags and bottles of urine lying in the street.

This morning pictures have emerged of the mess left behind including nappies, broken glass and people's shoes.

One resident said: "Well, woke up this morning after eventually getting to sleep after lots of shouting, swearing and banging of car doors and boots and of course horn beeping, to used toilet paper in my front garden and human waste left in a carrier bag and urine bottles on my back drive and verge.

"I'm so angry, there must be something as residents we can do."

Another, Lita Andrews, said: "Just put my bins out and it looks like a rubbish tip on all the grass verges in Dunes Road all the way down to the woods.

"I am absolutely disgusted with these scumbags. No respect for anything that is not theirs.

A nappy left in the street Picture:Pd Photography
A nappy left in the street Picture:Pd Photography
Rubbish left on a nearby car park. Picture:Pd Photography
Rubbish left on a nearby car park. Picture:Pd Photography

"Thank you to my neighbours that have and are already clearing up outside their properties."

Scores of litter pickers were out this morning.

Hundreds of bags of litter - containing human waste, wipes, masks, food packets and more - have been collected from the sand to make it safe for children and families.

Julie Elliott, who lives near by, was one of the many volunteers helping out.

She said: “We drove past yesterday and saw how busy the beach was. I woke up this morning and saw the pictures online. I think it is terrible.

Hundreds of bags of rubbish were collected
Hundreds of bags of rubbish were collected

“My kids and grandchildren play here. I felt we had to help clean up.

“People are welcome here and obviously it is great for the economy but just please clean up after yourselves.”

Paul Harris from Lydd on Sea said there were cars parked everywhere, even on people’s drive ways.

He added: “We were over run. The cars were parked in people’s gardens and drive ways and along The Parade and the back streets.

“The beach was trashed, and the dunes. I’ve been picking up sanitary items even and cigarette butts.”

Another woman said her bins were moved so someone could park on her drive, blocking her in.

Organisers did admit the event "got out of hand" but denied doing anything illegal.

Social distancing laws mean gatherings of more than 30 people need to be approved, which the cook out was before police withdrew permission with 48 hours to go after learning three coach loads of revellers were set to attend.

Everyone paid £27.54 for a ticket but organiser Orette Williams said the money was to cover the three coach-loads of people who attended the event and the company gave out food free of charge.

The cook out was initially planned to take place in Camber, East Sussex, but was blocked by Sussex Police.

Residents also saw people throwing take away containers on the floor, and using wipes to get the sand off their feet before also discarding of these on the floor.

Waste company Veolia were also at the beach this morning collecting waste.

Police were also in the area.

Julie Knight said while some people were littering, others were embarrassed of their behaviour.

She said: “I came down yesterday, I was handing out rubbish bags and some people were asking for bags. They were actually embarrassed about what was going on.

“So while it was a disgrace, their were some nice people. It’s just a few who ruin it for everyone else.”

The crowds and parked cars made travelling through the area very difficult

People had congregated to the Romney Marsh beach using three sold-out hired coaches and a range of minibuses and private cars.

The gathering was organised by Flavour Boss - a jerk restaurant in Croydon - and was originally planned for Camber before they were turned away from the coastal destination.

The sheer volume of people turning up, coupled with illegally parked cars, caused traffic chaos while a number of police vehicles were on hand to try to keep the peace.

One resident said: "So dangerous. No respect for anyone. They are blocking driveways and parking on double yellows.

"We were blocked in on our driveway and they parked across our front gate on the footpath, disgusting behaviour."

Revellers took to Greatstone Beach as part of a pre-planned 'beach cookout' yesterday (40184504)
Revellers took to Greatstone Beach as part of a pre-planned 'beach cookout' yesterday (40184504)

Another major issue was the lack of mask-wearing, as was evidenced by video footage from inside a bus en route to Greatstone and videos from late in the night.

Izettin Olgun, who owns the Coastal Kebab shop on the seafront said police had told him to shut due to the number of people and inability to ensure they were socially distancing.

This he found difficult to do due to the number of people trying to push their way into the eatery.

Police on the scene were met with overwhelming numbers and smashed glass across much of the seafront and its paths.

Reports that a policeman had been stabbed have been rejected by Kent Police.

Repeated confrontations with the police were caught on camera last night

So far a clear picture of what went on last night has not been provided by police.

Read more: All the latest news from Romney Marsh

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