Replacing sand at Grace Darling Park not sustainable

The Shire of Gingin says it is time to find another solution to spending thousands of dollars on sand at Grace Darling Park each year that is then washed away. Picture: Shire of Gingin

THE Shire of Gingin says replacing sand after erosion at Grace Darling Park is not a sustainable option and another solution needs to be found.

Shire of Gingin President Sam Collard said the park in Lancelin had been temporarily closed due to erosion undercutting a gazebo there making it unsafe for members of the public to use.

Cr Collard said the recent storms had also badly eroded the beach.

He said the gazebo and barbecue would be relocated to a safer area within the park until a decision was made for a longer term solution.

“The section of beach at Grace Darling Park has been subject to inundation for several years, with the shire carrying out ongoing sand renourishment works, (which is) the Department of Transport coastal engineers’ preferred erosion mitigation option at this location,’’ he said.

“But it is obvious that sand renourishment at Grace Darling Park is not a sustainable option.

“Every year we spend thousands of dollars on sand works and every year the sea washes it back.

“It’s time to look at another solution.

“In the meantime, the shire asks that people stay away from the area while works are being carried out and to respect any barricading that has been erected in the interests of public safety.’’

In Should Grace Darling Park be moved? (Yanchep News Online, June 25, 2016) the Friends of Lancelin Coast said they wanted to start discussing a planned retreat from Grace Darling Park and for the park’s infrastructure and lawn to be relocated.

John Hatch from the Friends of Lancelin Coast said Grace Darling Park should be returned to natural dune to create a soft beach to absorb wave energy in an attempt win back the area’s natural shoreline and beach.

He said the group also wanted the shire to start educating the public about the positives and negatives of installing infrastructure on the beaches and costs involved in maintaining it.

In early 2016 $20,000 worth of sand the shire had carted in to replenish the beach was washed away.