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Stormy weather reveals wartime beach defences

By North Devon Journal  |  Posted: March 06, 2014

  • Catchline: Putsborough Sands Date: 03/03/14 Caption: A number of wooden posts have also been discovered in the sand.. Picture credit Claire McBride.

  • DEFENCES: Stone boulders and metal spikes have been unearthed by the recent bad weather. Picture: Claire McBride.

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DEFENCES from the Second World War could pose a risk to surfers after they were uncovered on Putsborough Sands.

Concerns have been raised over a possible risk of injury after high tides and poor weather unearthed the defences.

They include a number of metal spikes and coils, traditionally used to support barbed wire, and several large concrete boulders.

The objects were left behind by US troops who used the beach as a training ground ahead of the D-Day invasion.

Claire McBride, who discovered the defences, said she feared someone would be injured by the objects, particularly during high tide.

She said: "Because so much sand has been taken away there's now a lot of stuff that has been left exposed. The sand level has been taken down probably about three or four feet. There's a lot of very sharp pieces of metal sticking out of the sand now and there's quite a lot of concrete and wooden posts along the beach.

"Obviously the spikes could cause some nasty injuries, and you wouldn't want to hit your head on the stones or posts either. If it's high tide and you're out surfing, it's going to be very difficult to spot them."

The defences were uncovered on land believed to belong to the Crown Estate, near the area known as Black Rock. Although the objects are expected to be once again covered by sand in a number of weeks, the Crown Estate is currently investigating whether any action needs to be taken.

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