Save Ocean Beach

The natural and physical resources of Ocean beach and its adjacent City Dunedin are under threat and you can help!

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Harvest time at Springfield Estate, Methven, where 23 binders were at work. - Otago Witness, 30.12.1908.
Harvest time at Springfield Estate, Methven, where 23 binders were at work. - Otago Witness, 30.12.1908.
The Ocean Beach is a scene of incessant warfare between land and water, and an annual inspection of the frontier of silver sand shows to what extent one or the other has prevailed.

The Ocean Beach possesses remarkable characteristics, one of which is the undertow that makes it such a dangerous place to bathe from, and incidentally shifts so many tons of sand.

For this the tremendous inrush of billows to the Brighton Bight is mainly responsible.

The heaped-up waters find an easy egress by the narrow channel between White Island and Forbury Head, through which they pass at the rate of three miles an hour, thus causing a scour, which, though felt most severely at St. Clair, affects the whole foreshore right down to Lawyer's Head.

Were it not for the Ocean Beach Domain Board, a high spring tide, accompanied by a heavy gale from southerly, might result in a flooded St. Kilda.

A buffer has been found in the sand, swept to and fro by the sea and blown about in clouds by every wind.

Not a very stable material but with a little ingenuity and a great deal of perseverance the Domain Board has succeeded beyond expectations.

Scrub fences were erected to act as revetments, and the sand drifted and covered them, precisely as it blotted out the cities of the Pharaohs.

More fences were made and in turn covered, and the coarse, hardy sand grass, spreading and growing steadily, served further, as it were, to bind the compact.

• A strong, respectable-looking man came before the Benevolent Trustees yesterday, and, with the homely burr of Scotland, asked for aid.

He was 30 years of age, was married, and had been employed as a warehouse measurer in Glasgow.

Times were bad there, and he had scraped together enough money to pay his passage to New Zealand.

Having had experience of work in woollen mills, he applied at the Oamaru, Roslyn, and Mosgiel mills in vain.

On Monday he had walked in from Mosgiel, after having spent Sunday night in a stable, and was now literally starving.

He broke down then, and the big manly frame, weakened by hunger and the long, vain search for work and independence, was shaken with weary sobs.

The trustees promised him immediate help, and sent him off with a coin, cheered and grateful, to buy himself a good square meal. - ODT, 10.12.1908.