In 1999 the Supertubes Park in da Gama road had become a no go zone. Long gone where the days when surfers from JBay and all over the world could change in the public bathroom in the Park and go for a surf, leaving their clothes and car keys behind in the knowledge everything would be safe and secure upon their return from the surf.
Vandalism, assaults and even rapes were some of the crimes taking place along the last remaining section of untouched Jeffreys Bay sand dunes that overlook the world class surf break of Supertubes.
The sand dunes were becoming increasingly eroded due to the heavy impact of people walking all over them, as well as the weather taking its toll on the exposed sections of dune.
The surf community then decided to get involved and to start looking after the Park as well as the beaches from Supertubes to Point.
The JBU ‘beach parties” saw surfers spending their weekends digging out aloes and transporting them to the beachfront to preserve the last remaining sand dune of the “old Jeffreys Bay”.
“We started off transplanting thousands of aloes from building sites being developed around Jeffreys Bay and planted them in the Supertubes Park as well as at the car park at Point to try stabilise the sand dunes”, said Koffie Jacobs, a long time Jeffreys Bay local surfer and environmentalist.
“We also started to remove broken glass and other rubbish from the beaches and helped clean up oil spills at Supertubes as well”, he added.
With support from the surf community and the surf industry, the Supertubes Foundation has managed to expand their efforts in preserving the beaches of Jeffreys Bay and recently replaced the walkway at Lower Point that was washed away in the floods of 2011.
The grass area at Lower Point was also rehabilitated and the entire community can now enjoy walking on thorn free grass and can gain access to the beach with ease.
Thanks to a sponsorship from Palatzzo Paving and Super Pavers, the walkway to the old judges stand in the Supertubes Park as well as the beach access to Magnatubes now boast walkways that make getting to the beach so much easier.
The Supertubes Park is becoming more and more of a tourist attraction for Jeffreys Bay as a result with local and international visitors all making positive comments about the area.
The discovery of an ancient shell midden at the Supetubes Park will mean that the Foundation will be looking at developing that particular section of the Park into a heritage tourism site that will further benefit what Jeffreys Bay offers its visitors.
Surf tourism has been a sustainable money earner for decades for Jeffreys Bay and heritage tourism will do the same in future. It is heartening to know that the Supertubes Surfing Foundation is taking care of our beaches, not only for us, but for future generations as well.