‘They have taken too much sand!’

FLOODING ... Sea water covers Foreshore Road during a high tide which happens up to five times a year. The beach management work which has been carried out this week aims to minimise this happening

FLOODING ... Sea water covers Foreshore Road during a high tide which happens up to five times a year. The beach management work which has been carried out this week aims to minimise this happening

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A LOCAL businessman is criticising Scarborough Council by claiming that workers have removed too much sand from the South Bay.

The work, to level sand and move it from the foreshore area to in front of the Spa, began last month and lasted for around two weeks ahead of the main tourist season.

Brian Hewitt, who runs an art gallery in Eastborough, said that the sand used to be level with Foreshore Road but now there is a drop of around three feet where it has been removed.

However the council has claimed the work to regrade the beach is vital to prevent the incoming tides running up the beach and flooding Foreshore Road – known as the beach ramping effect.

Stewart Rowe, the council’s principal coastal officer, said: “There is a tendency for sand to accumulate in front of the sea wall at the north end of South Bay in the lee of the West Pier.

“In winter this results in frequent wave uprush over the wall and across the road, causing property damage and the need for regular clean-up operations. Sand blocking drains and gullies restricts the free drainage of floodwater which lengthens the duration of flood incidents, prolonging the misery for those affected.

“When beach volume reaches a critical level in the northern section, sand is excavated in the vicinity of the Foreshore and then spread and graded in front of the sea wall that protects the Spa approach road.”

He added that if the measures were not taken the beach levels would accumulate to the point where waves would overtop the seawall and cause even more serious flooding in Foreshore Road.