Salem beach users happy for planned upgrade
Carl Gilchrist, Gleaner Writer
Users of the Salem fisherman's beach near Runaway Bay in St Ann are expressing delight at the announcement that the beach is to be upgraded.
Long regarded as a fisherman's locale that nevertheless accommodate recreational activities, the fishermen, however, are hoping that the upgrade will also mean direct help for them.
"I feel great, I feel good that it will be upgraded because we want it to be better," remarked Lesline Wilson-Haye, who has operated a shop on the beach for the past 27 years.
"I think we need some better facilities here and the fishermen need some help too."
A new vending facility for fishermen was opened at the beach in April 2011, which facilitated easier access for customers.
The fishermen are hoping that any additional upgrade will impact them even more directly this time around.
According to fisherman Leonard Bailey, aka Stereo: "The bathroom working but it can upgrade; put in light and make sure we can have 24-hour access because fisherman come any hour. The (fisherman's) co-op will have to meet and decide what we all need but I personally would like to see the Government assist us. We need wires and more access to get engines."
Bailey said there is enough space to accommodate the fishermen, vendors and people who want to use the beach for swimming and other activities.
Pete, who has been making a living scaling fish at the beach for the past six years, said new shops are needed to make the place look better. He also suggested that fishermen be given assistance while on fishing breaks.
"Sometimes we need to give the fish a break, like a one-year or two-year break so we need finance, so during that time, we can have something fi take care ah we self and we family," he stated.