After some fairly fierce lobbying and complaints from local residents and businesses, West Dorset District Council have finally relented and opened the gates that lead to the northern end of the West Bay Road car park. They were certainly opened by last Friday afternoon. The prolonged and unexplained closure over the Christmas and New Year period led to considerable difficulty for many motorists and a great deal of frustration for residents. Many people have mentioned the difficulties they faced during the holiday period.

On West Cliff there has been the strong smell of gas for a number of days. Enquiries reveal that the leak is coming from a damaged gas main that runs under a hedgerow in an area of damp ground between near the waste transfer station. The gas company are to explore the situation at the beginning of this week. There is a possibility that this work will not be straight forward, due to the isolated location, and may require special equipment to be used on site. The smell is very strong and unpleasant at times. Local residents are concerned that this matter is resolved as quickly as possible.

Last weekend the charter boat Jolly Dodger had its first outing of the season and it was very worthwhile with some magnificent fish caught. To find out more about this and other fishing expeditions visit the or phone 01308 421800.

On Sunday (6), a congregation of 30 people gathered in St John's Church for this year's Epiphany carol service led jointly by the Rector of Bridport, Rev'd Deb Smith, and team vicar, the Rev'd Pete Stone. The service was followed by mulled wine, fruit juice and pastries, courtesy of the Cornish Bakery. No one was keen to take up Pete's invitation to be baptised in cider which, apparently, was an old custom in this part of the world!