Sandy shores return to Killiney beach for first time in years

Large amount of sand washed up on traditionally rocky south Dublin stretch at weekend

Priska Haefliger walks ‘Freddie’ the dog on the sand on Killiney beach. Photograph: Tom Honan

Priska Haefliger walks ‘Freddie’ the dog on the sand on Killiney beach. Photograph: Tom Honan

 

Killiney beach, traditionally a stretch of rock and pebbles on the south Dublin coast, has been covered in sand in recent days.

A large amount of sand washed up at the weekend and covered the beach for the first time in years. Small sections of wet sand would only be found on the beach during periods of low tides in the past.

Killiney beach, traditionally a stretch of rock and pebbles, was for the first time in years covered in sand in recent days. Photograph: Tom Honan
Killiney beach, traditionally a stretch of rock and pebbles, was for the first time in years covered in sand in recent days. Photograph: Tom Honan

A spokeswoman from Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council said the local authority was aware of the presence of a “significant amount of sand on Killiney beach in the last 48 hours” despite the spot ordinarily being known for “its pebble and stone characteristics”.

“Council engineers on site today have confirmed that this came about as result of a natural coastal process known as sediment transfer,” the spokeswoman said. “In itself it is a relatively common occurrence but one that has not occurred on Killiney beach in this type of volume for a number of years.”

Killiney-based Labour councillor Carrie Smyth said she first saw the new bank of sand covering the beach during a weekend walk.

“There was a thin enough layer of sand covering the beach, I just put it down to the low tide,” she said.

A view of sand which has built up on Killiney beach in Dublin where Priska Haefliger took her dog Freddie for a walk on Tuesday. Photograph: Tom Honan
A view of sand which has built up on Killiney beach in Dublin where Priska Haefliger took her dog Freddie for a walk on Tuesday. Photograph: Tom Honan

A beach on Achill island in Co Mayo made headlines in 2017, when it reappeared after a near 30-year absence.

Dooagh beach was washed away during the winter of 1984 but returned when hundreds of thousands of tonnes of sand was deposited back on the shoreline in April 2017. However, earlier this year the beach was washed away again, following several weeks of heavy seas.

Similarly, the local authority has cautioned that the new sandy shores of Killiney beach may not last long enough for locals to enjoy them this summer.

“It is possible that the sand may transfer again to another location in the short term; council engineers will continue to monitor Killiney beach accordingly,” the council spokeswoman said.