Lifeguard Patrols at Tathra Beach Extended

A dedicated group of local businesses have bonded together to raise funds to extend the lifeguard patrolling service at Tathra Beach through to the end of February.

Bega Valley Shire Council currently provide lifeguard services for eight beaches across the region from Boxing Day through to Australia Day, traditionally the peak period for holidaymakers in the region, but the new agreement means that Tathra Beach will now be patrolled 7 days a week throughout February.

Rob White from Tathra Beach House Apartments has been one of the key drivers of the campaign and feels that the move will be a boon for the local tourism industry.

“I’ve been in the tourism industry for twenty years, and come the first day of February there has never been a patrolled beach option for holidaymakers. February has the same water temperature as January, and very often better weather conditions,” Mr White said.

“Although people have gone back to school there are still a lot of younger families, and retirees wanting to enjoy a beach holiday along the Sapphire Coast.”

“We want to promote the region as a great beach holiday destination, and we want people to have a safe time at the beach. While it gives Tathra a point of difference at the moment, hopefully it will spread to the other beaches in the Sapphire Coast region, further enhancing the area’s reputation as a great holiday destination.”

Local businesses Bega Valley Motors, Big 4 Tathra Beach, Tathra Beach Family Park, Tathra Beach House Apartments, and the Tathra Chamber of Commerce have all backed the campaign by donating significant funds to assist in the provision of the lifeguard service for an extra month. Additional funding from the Southern Phone Grants Scheme made up the difference and ensured this project would come to fruition.

Australian Lifeguard Service Manager Brent Manieri said the arrangement will help promote beach safety in the region.

“We’re delighted that the business community have bonded together to enable locals and tourists alike to swim at a patrolled beach throughout one of the busiest months of the year.

“Lifeguards play an active role in keeping our beaches safe as they are well trained to deal with an array of emergency situations,” Mr Manieri said.

Photograph: L-R Carmen Risby (Tathra Beach Family Park), Jason Buttgereit (Bega Valley Motors), Rob White (Tathra Beach House), Mitch Van der Meulen (Lifeguard), Shayne Rettke (Lifeguard Supervisor) and Kerry McKay (BIG 4 Holiday Park Tathra Beach). Courtesy of Bega District News.

Thu 15 Jan 2015