New surf patrol for Papamoa Beach

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The surf lifesaving season is fast approaching and this year will see a new patrol set up to keep swimmers in Papamoa East safe.

Surf clubs begin patrolling on Labour Weekend, but are in the process of ensuring lifeguards were prepared for the season.

Papamoa Community Surf Rescue Base Trust chairman Jim Pearson said lifeguards were going through refresher and patrol trainings, as well as IRB training.

"Our core reason of being is to protect people on the beach and save lives. Everything else we do is with that core mission in mind. Even when we do surf sports, we have developing lifeguards in mind," he said.

Papamoa surf club would be doing a new patrol in Papamoa East, and Mr Pearson said they were working through the details about where and when it would take place.

"We've had discussion with iwi and Eastern regions as we just want to make sure where we could set up satellite patrol."

He said the need for a patrol there had become readily apparent with the increase of beach users in the area.

The club was still fundraising for a new club house, aiming to raise $4 million with help from funders.

A new club house would accommodate the new members who were joining the club.

"With the growth in Papamoa in the last year we're expecting quite a huge growth in membership," he said.

"The current facility is, both the space and layout, bursting at the seams.

"That's really why the new build is such an urgent priority."

He expected more than 400 junior surf members this year. Last year's total was 395.

Their total club membership last year was 756.

Mount Maunganui surf club general manager Glenn Bradley said they were looking forward to getting patrols underway on Labour Weekend.

"We have a really busy weekend of activities with the season kicking off for our lifeguards, and a really big weekend of training," he said.

Papamoa Surf Club
- Junior Surf Registration at the Club
October 12, 4pm-6pm
October 16, 2pm-4pm
- First day of Junior Surf is Sunday November 6, 10am
- First day of Lifeguard Beach patrols starts October 22 (Labour Weekend).

Mount Maunganui Surf Club
- October 30 is registration for junior surf/nippers between 5 to 13-years-old, 10am.

Omanu Surf Club
Registration Day for junior to masters
Where: Omanu Club rooms
When: Sunday October 16, 10am-midday.
Or beat the queue and either pop into the office Monday to Friday 9am to 12pm or register online.

- Bay of Plenty Times

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