There has been a lot of talk recently about the state of Brodick’s Beach. Over the last few years there has been noticeable change in the shape and profile of the beach, leading to ever increasing rate of erosion. The weather plays a key role in the life cycle of a beach. It can bring in the sand, but also take it away! This is called a sediment budget, and just like any other budget, if you lose more than you put in, you will get a negative effect.
I’ve seen a few photographs on the “Save Brodick Beach” page on facebook of the Fisherman’s Walk and it got me thinking. Perhaps that area of land is sinking, or compressing, meaning the high tide can reach what appears to be further up the land? I’d be interested to hear if anyone has data on this and the results!
The river area behind the beach is tidal so if part of the beach disappears then it shouldn’t affect the reach of the sea at high tide but it will however, leave it more open to direct wave erosion. I’m not sure if the flooding at high tide can be prevented there.
It should be noted that beaches are very efficient at dissipating wave energy, the bigger the beach the less energy there will be to damage the vegetation line.
Restoration of Brodick Beach
As ugly as they are, the geotextile bags are a must where they are, a solid barrier to protect the old landfill area spilling into the sea. However, the slope profile was far too steep when the sand was replenished which turned the beach into a reflective profile which encourages sediment draw down. Each beach has it’s own maximum slope which works the best, and this is dependent on the size of the sand grains.
Possible solutions? Well I’m working on a few ideas which would see the return of the sand to Brodick Beach, there are numerous methods which can be used, but I think it’s going to take time, and hopefully not too much money!
I doubt there is a permanent solution, by nature beaches are mobile, but I’m positive that I can come up with an aesthetically pleasing, ecologically friendly solution to loss of sand from the village end of the beach. Stay tuned for more…
ps. can anyone provide me with rough dimensions of the beach? Also the height from the low tide terrace to the top of the textile bags? And the distance from the low tide line to the textile bags?