Stones and rubble washed up on a busy stretch of Prestwick beach are being removed as South Ayrshire Council starts its first annual clean-up. The measures were approved after a report made recommendations to improve maintenance through an ongoing programme of works.
A Trommel sieve machine, used during a trial period earlier this year, will now clean the rest of the beach from Burgh Road to the former outdoor swimming pool. The machine, fitted with a 30mm sieve, picks out larger stones and rubble but leaves the sand in place.
The process will be repeated annually before the start of the bathing season, so that locals and visitors can enjoy pristine sands. Where possible the material removed from the beach will be taken away and reused by the Council, with one potential use identified as base material for drainage ditches.
Councillor Ian Cochrane, South Ayrshire Council’s Portfolio Holder for Sustainability and the Environment said, “It’s great to see this work get underway and I’m sure that the local community will be extremely pleased at the change in the quality of the sand they’ll soon see on this busy stretch of beach.
“We know from our pilot project that this method delivers visible results and given we’re committed to revisiting the clean-up every year, the flow of man-made materials being washed up on the shore will now be actively managed.
“This latest development is the culmination of a successful partnership between the Council and the Prestwick community, and is one that we expect to leave a lasting legacy on this stretch of coastline.”
The work is the result of partnership between South Ayrshire Council and the community, with the project being supported by Friends of Prestwick Seafront, Prestwick Civic Pride, Prestwick North Community Council, and Prestwick South Community Council.
Norrie Smith, Vice Chair of Prestwick South Community Council said everyone involved had put a lot of time and effort behind the scenes, “It’s fantastic to see the clean-up begin at Prestwick Beach, which is something we've been working hard to achieve.
“The groups involved all came together to press for something to be done here, with the results we’re seeing today the result of a series of meetings with partners, and of much wider discussions with the community.
“We’ve worked closely with South Ayrshire Council to come up with a solution, with the operation now getting underway the start of a much needed maintenance programme.”
The first clean-up began on Monday, 16 October and is expected to take three weeks to complete subject to prevailing weather conditions.