Respect the beaches

Keith Alfred Adolph Blake, Ottery

In 2008 my sons took me to Strandfontein beach to do some real fishing and since then I have been hooked on the social sport of shoreline fishing (which I do) whenever I have the time. In all this time I have met other fishermen and on their advice and their experiences I have learnt more or less how to fish the waters along our beautiful coastline.

On two occasions I have written to the Cape Argus about the poor state of Muizenberg and Strandfontein beaches.

On Sunday March 13, my son, Morné, and I went to two spots along Strandfontein beach to do some shoreline fishing and what got my mood to high tide was the presence of small cardboard boxes, blue plastic paper and lots of two-litre bottles, some empty and some filled with water, as well as other filth strewn on the beach. There also was a board, which had stains on it, which a fisherman would use to cut their bait on – a type of home made breadboard.

I had no doubt that these articles were used by fishermen with no respect for the beaches.

May I ask those guilty of this dumping: would you allow your neighbour to dump dirt on your pavement and in your parks where your children play?

I am hoping this letter will reel in the consciences of those guilty of the dumping on our fishing spots. Remember our blessing we say to one another when we are on the beach: “stywe lyne”. Let not the catch of the day be a plastic bag or something else dumped on the beach. Next time some of us go fishing let this be your motto “Leave nothing on the beach, only your footprints.”

* These letters have been shortened.