Interesting how much coastal erosion has taken place in 76 years.
Roseisle Beach Defences cont’d.
The concrete blocks were built in situ, mostly by Polish troops, using the sand and pebbles found on site. On many of the decaying blocks you can see the steel reinforcing rods inside. Something that struck me was that each block seemed to have had an extra layer added to the top. Some of these have fallen off and are lying next to the block. While doing some research I read that they had been built 4ft high but that that was felt to be too low so another foot was added later. You can see on some of the blocks the pattern of the wooden shuttering. Also on some of the blocks that there are the remains of steel hoops sticking out the top. These were to thread the barbed wire through which zig-zagged along the line of blocks securing three continuous coils of barbed wire along the seaward side of the blocks.
You can also see some larger blocks with corrugated sides at at least three locations. These would be entrances through the barbed wire barrier. One entrance remains complete with two large blocks side by side, one with three staggered holes, the other with three staggered slots. One can imagine that heavy moveable wood or steel beams would be slotted into the holes to close the gap.
The blocks and pillboxes were constructed along the edge of the sand dunes above high water mark. The fact that most of them are now on the beach below the high water mark shows just how much coastal erosion has taken place in the last 76 years. Interestingly, the blocks towards the Burghead end of the beach are now contained within the dunes so while the western end of the beach is eroding, the dunes at the east end are being added to.
To be continued………..