I have to say I was dismayed by this article in the Daily Mail, which reported the abuse of a surfer at Bude’s popular Summerleaze beach, by a paddle boarder.
Now, I’m not a Daily Mail reader, so this came to me via an alert. However, when I read it, I was taken aback on many levels.
Firstly, that the incident happened at all, and secondly that the report was so badly written. The article then went on to have a go about Cornish ‘nationalism’. I’m not Cornish but I found it offensive.
The feedback I received from posting it on FB was both useful and interesting. Not least was the expressed view that the story was taken entirely from Bude Banter, which is a popular FB group among Bude locals and others. That might explain why, although the report was said to be an interview, it didn’t really read like one. Nor did the Mail express any interest in adding the ending which was, yes, an apology. Swift action by the local police led to this outcome:
Bude Police came to see me at my work place this morning after seeing the video either on here or via youtube. They have been and spoken to the man in the video and he has apologised. I think this is now dealt with and I can’t praise Bude Police enough for coming to see me without being prompted. Thank you to the other chap for his apology; it truly does take a bigger man to say sorry than it does to say nothing.
As someone who loves Bude and tries to report it in a positive way, I’d like to challenge the Daily Mail to include the part about the prompt action by Bude Police, the apology from the paddle boarder, and the magnanimous acceptance of that by the surfer. But that probably isn’t controversial enough.
I stick by #BigUpBude.
I’ve never been unfortunate enough to suffer any abuse in Bude in my four years here, which includes spending a lot of time at the beach.
The incident should not have happened. After this, I hope it will not happen again.
As for the surfing community, I think they’re amazing. I look at the work done by the volunteers who run Waveriders, and Budehaven’s Boardriders, who look out for each other. I think of the surf schools who go over and above the call of duty to help coach their pupils. I think of the Surf Life Saving Club and their great work.
And, I heard only this morning, that Bude surfers are having a 6.30am surf tomorrow, in honour/memory of their colleague, Rob Walters, who very recently sadly passed away. One of the guys has just reminded me (and I’ve mentioned them many times before) that Bude also has an active Surf Action group where they take ex veterans out to surf every Thursday and Saturday, helping them cope with both physical and mental problems they are having be it PTSD or physical injuries.
That, to me, is far more indicative of the Bude community than the Daily Mail take on the story.