Clean up operation as high winds blow sand off beach into homes
- Credit: Caroline Stubbs
People in a coastal village have once again found themselves clearing sand from their homes after strong winds blew sand off the beach and into properties.
A clean-up operation has been launched in Bacton and Walcott after gale-force winds caused by Storm Darcy, which battered the county over the weekend, picked sand up off the beach and blew it into the villages.
The area hit headlines around the world in September 2020, when it was hit by a sandstorm which caused swathes of powercuts and buried properties, cars and homes in sand.
Following the recent high-winds, which were swiftly followed by freezing temperatures and snow, North Norfolk District Council’s Coastal Partnership East Team is preparing to help clear sand from the worst affected properties. The team will work alongside contractors and NNDC road sweepers once weather conditions improve in the area.
Pauline Porter, chairman of Walcott Parish Council, said the village was not as badly affected as it had been in September, with different properties suffering this time around, but for those frequently finding sand coming into their homes, it was a problem.
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She said: "It's not quite as a bad as last time, in that nobody has had to be dugout. From what I can gather homes that weren't affected last time have been this time.
"Far fewer people are affected by this sand than would be if we had water coming over the wall but there are a handful of people it's having a serious effect on because, sand is being driven into properties, getting through windows into car engines, jamming locks up, people are having to get locksmiths out.
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"It's a handful but it's not nice for the people that are affected," she said.
In 2019, around 1.8m cubic metres of sand was pumped onto the beach in front of the Bacton Gas Terminal and the villages of Bacton and Walcott as part of a new Sandscaping Project to protect homes from erosion and flooding. At the time it was publicised that windblown sand may be at greater risk in the first 18 - 24 months following the scheme.