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Fire damage warning after Balmedie beach incident

By David Porter

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The good weather made for a busy weekend for Aberdeenshire Council's seasonal access rangers with many people out enjoying Aberdeenshire’s stunning countryside and coast.

While most people were behaving responsibly, there were a few who did not - one particular instance resulting in significant damage to the local environment again through a discarded barbecue on the dunes near Balmedie Country Park which was completely avoidable.

A spokesperson for the council rangers said: "Some of the fire damage to our countryside could take years to recover from.

"We always recommend a stove for outdoor cooking as it’s much safer and cleaner than a barbecue, but if you are using one please do so safely and responsibly by following the advice on our leaflet responsibleaccess-bbqsandfiresinthecountryside-leafletjune2020-004.pdf (aberdeenshire.gov.uk)

"Sadly there was also damage caused at the toilets at Balmedie - the new disabled toilets are now out of use because someone broke a key in the lock which needs to be replaced.

Disposable barbecues have caused issues at Balmedie
Disposable barbecues have caused issues at Balmedie

"The ladies toilets are currently under repair after suffering extensive vandalism.

"Please note that only the gents toilets remain open and will have to play a unisex role until further notice – and only one person at a time should be using the facilities under Covid arrangements.

"So if you are visiting Balmedie or any of our other attractions, please Know the Code before you go:

* Care for our environment, please take away everything you take in

* Respect the interests of others, including those who live and work in the countryside

* Be responsible for your own actions, including being a responsible dog owner

For more details visit https://www.nature.scot/scottish-outdoor-access-code"

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