Marine Lake restoration work advances

Weston Marine Lake.

Weston Marine Lake. - Credit: North Somerset Council

Work to restore Weston Marine Lake and flush out built-up silt are forging ahead with a new trial in motion this week.

North Somerset Council has pledged to invest £300,000 to bring the lake back into use as a community hub for watersports. The authority is now awaiting a licence from the Government’s Marine Management Organisation, which will permit the removal of built-up silt from the lake.

In the interim, the council is trialling various methods of silt agitation to encourage large amounts of the material to be flushed out with the tide. In recent weeks, an excavating digger has worked alongside the causeway to churn up compacted silt, resulting in a reduction of an estimated 1,800 tonnes, approximately five per cent of the total silt volume. 

Work to flush silt from Weston's Marine Lake

Marine Lake's faulty sluice gates have been removed and diggers are churning up the silt to enable the spring tides to flush it out. - Credit: North Somerset Council

In the coming weeks, while the lake remains closed to the public, a digger will continue to agitate the silt around the lake's northern edge, alongside the concrete walkway below the RNLI building. 

This afternoon (Thursday), Selwood Pumping will be at Marine Lake to trial the use of a high-pressure hose and pumping system, to disturb the silt which has built up in the middle of the lake.


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Executive member for neighbourhood and community services for the council, councillor Mike Solomon, said: “I am pleased with the progress made at Marine Lake so far. 

“The excavating digger has been very effective and I’m pleased Selwood Pumping are lending their expertise to the project as well.

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“The more silt we can encourage to leave the lake naturally while we wait for our licence, the less silt removal we’ll need to pay for this autumn.”

The walkways around the lake, including the causeway, remain closed to the public to protect their safety during the works, although access for the RNLI will be maintained at all times. 

The council is working with the newly-established Community Interest Company Weston Marine Lake Mudlarks on the possible long-term maintenance and finance arrangements for the restored lake. To get involved with Weston Mudlarks, log on to westonmarinelake.co.uk

The council’s investment in Weston’s Marine Lake is part of a £700,000 Great Lakes project that will involve revitalising Clevedon and Portishead's coastal lakes also.

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