GOREY residents fear that one of the jewels in Jersey’s crown is being tarnished by the ‘horrific’ stench of seasonal seaweed.
The village, with its iconic castle and pier, has been the scene of many a photo and picture postcard but at the moment, when the wind and tide combine, it also harbours a pungent whiff.
Business owners and residents – concerned that visitors might be put off by the odour and flies – are calling on Ports of Jersey to clear it away.
The publicly owned company, which has responsibility for the harbour, has said that this week’s forthcoming spring tides should flush out the problem.
Matthew Jones, who runs the Moorings Hotel in Gorey with his wife, Iselin, said: ‘We’ve had online reviews which have praised the hotel and the area but have mentioned the smell, which at times can be pretty horrific.
‘It has been a feature of life since we’ve been here, but it does feel as though it is getting worse.
‘More and more people are mentioning it and recently a guest asked if we could shut the door of the café because it was getting a bit much.’
He added: ‘Of course, we understand that this is all part of being by the sea and it is seasonal, but equally this is a beautiful part of the Island, and popular with tourists, so if it can be cleared to get rid of the smell and the flies, then it should at least be looked at.
‘Also, it’s dependent on the tide and the wind, so it doesn’t smell all the time.
‘The Infrastructure Department does clean the area around the slipway by Rhona’s Café, but it’s never happened by the harbour, as far as I am aware.
‘It used to be cleared, so I’m not sure why it’s not now. The only time it’s properly cleared is just before the Gorey Fete.’
Long-term Gorey resident Jason Meads agreed that the smell was ‘pretty disgusting’.
‘It definitely stinks, at times, and no one ever comes to clean it up,’ he said. ‘The harbour is the money shot of Jersey, so I think would be a smart move to look after it.’
In response, a Ports spokesperson said: ‘A member of our harbour team inspected Gorey Harbour and found a small amount of seaweed near the bottom of the slipway, which was cleared by our cleaning team over the weekend.
‘There is some seaweed that has been stranded at the high-tide mark among the moorings. It tends to settle in the harbour from time to time, depending on the prevailing wind direction. It is a natural occurrence during high spring tides, when it can become stranded on the high-water mark as the tide then neaps.
‘We are heading towards spring tides again this week, which will flush out the weed naturally.’