Polzeath beach, a one time hangout for Prince Harry, a draw for teen sex, drug use and bad behaviour

It’s always been a magnet for public school pupils blowing off steam in summer. But as one of the beach rangers charged with policing Polzeath reveals, this year it’s descended into an orgy of drugs, vandalism and underage sex.

Andy Stewart, the muscular 53-year-old coastal ranger on Polzeath beach, and retired local police officer, could be forgiven for wanting an early night.

For two weeks he and his two cohorts, along with the local police and restaurant security guards, have been patrolling the beach until the early hours, trying to manage the hordes of public school kids, many as young as 12, who descend after dark to take part in what is affectionately termed among parents as ’snog week’.

That, however, is a label that does not begin to cover the darker side of the late-night carousing this affluent part of Cornwall has become famous for in July.

Certainly for the citizens of Polzeath, what really goes on in their beautiful town among the sons and daughters of some of the UK’s wealthiest families — drunkenness, vandalism, under-age sex — is no laughing matter.

So concerned were residents at last year’s antics that this year Andy’s team has been joined by two policemen every night, and two security guards — Jezra Mackenzie and Jules Turner — who work the door at the Surfside restaurant.

They’ve also installed infrared cameras directed at the beach, sweeping torchlights and police enforcement of a new ban on alcohol on the beach.

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