The Marine Infrastructure Delivery Office (MIDO) has advised that they will place dredged sand from Swansea Channel on Blacksmiths Beach, as part of overdue dredge works.
This follows consistent advocacy by Ms Yasmin Catley MP - Member for Swansea and the Bring Blacksmiths Back group, for the sand to be used to replenish the beach.
However, MIDO has advised that dredging is expected to be completed by November. This is a significant extension of their initial time frame that anticipated that dredging would be completed in early 2022.
In July 2021, Parliamentary Secretary for the Hunter Taylor Martin MLC stated that Swansea Channel would be the first major NSW waterway to benefit from the Liberal Government's $6.2 million dredging program. This funding was announced as stimulus funding. Almost a year has passed since this announcement and Swansea Channel is yet to be dredged.
In addition, Ms Yasmin Catley MP - Member for Swansea also wrote to MIDO about placing a portion of the dredged sand at Redhead Beach, after it suffered significant coastal erosion during storms and heavy swell earlier this year. MIDO are yet to advise if this will occur.
Ms Yasmin Catley MP - Member for Swansea said 'it is pleasing that MIDO have listened to both mine and the Bring Blacksmiths Back group's pleas to place the sand dredged from Swansea Channel on Blacksmith Beach, however, I am extremely disappointed that the completion date has been delayed'.
'Swansea Channel was supposed to be the first major NSW waterway to benefit from a $6.2 million dredging program that the NSW Liberal Government announced last July. The fact that works are yet to commence and have been delayed is unacceptable'.
'MIDO has also not informed me if dredged sand will also be placed at Redhead Beach. In March, this beach was battered by storms and heavy swells. It makes sense for MIDO to leave sand here too'.