Boss of swanky seaside hotel lashes out over sand plaguing his resort

I know it’s Sandbanks, but this is ridiculous! Hotelier at exclusive Dorset hotspot accuses council of failing to act over huge amount of sand which is swept from the beach onto his premises

  • John Butterworth runs the Sandbanks Hotel in Dorset and is plagued by sand 
  • He says he is spending about £1,000 a week to clear it from his hotel’s terrace  

A hotel boss running a seaside getaway at the exclusive Sandbanks resort has lashed out over the vast amount of sand blowing from the beach into his plush venue.  

Hotelier John Butterworth says he is forking out £1,000 a week to clear the sand plaguing his swanky Sandbanks Hotel in Poole, Dorset. 

The four-star premise, which can charge up to £379 a night for a room, is right on the beachside of the resort – which includes millionaire football managers and celebrities among its residents. 

But John has blasted his local council and accused it of failing to tackle the problem, which has become so bad there’s almost no distinction between the hotel wall and beach. 

‘We have been here as a family-run business for over 60 years and this hotel alone pays at least £4,000 in council tax a week,’ Mr Butterworth said. 

Hotelier John Butterworth has accused his local council of failing to act over tonnes of sand plaguing his swanky Sandbanks Hotel (pictured) in Poole, Dorset

Mr Butterworth says he spends up to £1,000 a week to sweep the sand – which blows over the wall from the beach – away from his hotel’s terrace

John Butterworth (right) has blasted Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole Council and accused it of failing to tackle the problem, which has become so bad there’s almost no distinction between the hotel wall and beach, he says

‘All we ask is that they clear the build-up of sand to stop it coming over – but they just won’t.

READ MORE: ‘I paid £13.5M for the world’s most expensive bungalow in Sandbanks – it’s a total ‘death trap’ and full of mould’

‘What annoys me is that we see council bulldozers come and clear the area by the public toilets when the sand blows over.

‘So it seems to us that they’ll clear the areas that benefit them, but not a local business. It’s a disgrace.’

Mr Butterworth’s colleague, Jo Clements, said the council should do more to help beachfront businesses ahead of the summer period.

She said: ‘I’m so angry, it’s soul-destroying. This sets a very poor example to our visitors.

‘This terrace is also used for a takeaway pizza facility for people on the beach, how are they supposed to reach it when the steps are buried in sand?

‘People will say, ‘you’re on a beach, deal with it’. It’s not about that, it’s about the council not maintaining it.’

Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole Council  said that as they solely manage the beaches, it is not responsible for the clean-up of sand on the hotel grounds.

They said they have prioritised maintaining access for emergency vehicles along the 12-mile promenade, but their seafront team has cleared sand in front of the hotel. 

The four-star Sandbanks Hotel (pictured) sits right on the beach front of the exclusive Dorset resort and boasts a 10m indoor pool, sauna and small gym

In the summer it serves pizza on the beach. But hotelier John said the site is plagued by sand, which blows over the seaside wall and onto the terrace 

At points, the wall almost vanishes entirely under the sand, which has blown up against it from the beach

A BCP spokesperson said: ‘The ongoing task of keeping our 12-mile-long promenade clear of wind-blown sand is challenging and demands a certain amount of prioritising.

‘Our first priority is always to maintain access for emergency vehicles and thoroughfare access for pedestrians, pushchairs and wheelchairs along the Prom.

‘Whilst we look to undertake planned management of sand on the rest of the beach, storm events and other operational pressures – such as the recent Bay Run along the Prom – can result in us needing to adjust our schedule.

‘We are aware of the Sandbanks Hotel’s concerns about banked sand on the beach close to their terrace. Our seafront team have now been able to carry out the beach clearing activity in this area, resulting in the removal of the bulk of sand in front of the hotel.

‘Due to the caution required, so damage is not caused to the wall, there is likely to still be some build-up of sand remaining against the wall as the tractor cannot scrape along it.’

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