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Last Updated: Thursday, 24 May 2007, 13:07 GMT 14:07 UK
Beach gets 20,000 tonnes of sand
Newbiggin Sand
Bulldozers work on shaping the new sands for Newbiggin.
A Northumberland beach has undergone the first stages of its revamp.

Twenty thousand tonnes of sand was pumped on to Newbiggin's beach to restore the once popular golden sandy bay, which has been eroded.

The sand was brought from Skegness and blasted on to the shore from a giant dredger anchored in Newbiggin Bay.

Wansbeck Council's bid to attract visitors back will see 500,000 tonnes brought up the coast line over the next four weeks.

The council's 10m project, funded by Defra, was started to help with erosion problems which have been building up over three decades.

'Economy boost'

Concrete steps and boulder barriers were introduced at the beach to protect the promenade from further damage.

Trevor Straker, Head of Wansbeck's Environmental Services, said: "When we talked to local people about what they wanted to see the project achieve, they were overwhelmingly in favour of bringing back the beach to Newbiggin.

"In its heyday Newbiggin was a really popular little resort, and if we can bring back the visitors that should provide a genuine boost to the local economy."

The Dutch dredger Oranje
Oranje will make almost 30 trips between Newbiggin and Skegness

The dredger was in Newbiggin for little over three hours pumping its cargo onto the beach through a submerged pipeline, before heading south again.

It will make the journey between Newbiggin and Skegness almost 30 times with each round trip taking just under 24 hours.

0ver the next month the Dutch dredger Oranje is to travel between Newbiggin and the dredging site 20 miles off the Lincolnshire coast near Skegness.

A 200m-long breakwater is also being constructed as part of the project, where statues sculpted by artist Sean Henry will stand.

It is the first time such an operation to replenish a beach in this way, has been undertaken anywhere along the North East coastline, according to Wansbeck Council.




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18 May 07 |  England

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