June 28, 2017
Burnham residents call on Environment Agency to halt sand problem

A group of Burnham-On-Sea residents is calling on the Environment Agency to do more to prevent large amounts of sand blocking drives and gates along their road during high winds.

Residents in Maddock's Slade at the northern end of the Esplanade have seen their drives blocked by piles of wind-blown sand in recent weeks.

One resident, Mark Wilson, pictured, told "One elderly resident couldn't get the car out of his drive until a large quantity of sand was dug away."

"The gates on his drive open outwards, but because the sand was piled up so high, they wouldn't open."

"Further along the road, large amounts of sand gather along the walls. It took over four hours to clear it all away on one day."

He added: "We live in a seaside town and our homes are next to a beach so we fully expect blowing sand, but the problem could be better managed by the Environment Agency."

"When there are strong onshore winds and there's a risk of large quantities of sand being blown off the beach onto our road, we'd like the Environment Agency to close the big flood gate along the Maddock's Slade access road onto the beach."

"The access road seems to funnel the blowing sand into Maddock's Slade. Having the main flood gate shut would prevent this." has approached the Environment Agency, which overseas the flood gate, for a comment and is awaiting a response.

Sedgemoor District Council, which oversees the beach and sand itself, said: "As the gentleman rightly states, it is a seaside town and sand does blow about. The dunes are a natural formation and are 'anchored' by plants."

"We are at Mother Nature’s mercy but do our best to clear up as soon as the winds die down. Our clean surroundings team went around the residential areas three times to clear up after the recent high winds."


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