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Concerns raised over rapidly eroding Ynys Môn beauty spot beach and car park

18 Jun 2023 3 minute read
A bench at the Lleiniog car park – the edge is creeping closer amid tidal erosion, image by Dale Spridgeon

Dale Spridgeon, local democracy reporter

Concerns have been raised that a “treasured” Ynys Môn beach, known for its geological and archaeological “wonders” is crumbling into the sea.

The speed and dramatic impact of storms and powerful Menai Strait tides is “rapidly eroding” Lleiniog beach, near Llangoed, Ynys Môn, the cliffs a car park and picnic site.

Local man Gareth Phillips believes sea defence work, carried out by Ynys Môn Council in 2018 to protect coastal properties, has speeded up the decline of what is an area of outstanding natural beauty (AONB) and a designated site of special scientific interest (SSSI).

Mr Phillips, who forms part of a group of friends keen to protect the local area, has made an impassioned plea to the authorities to do something to address the problems to “protect the area’s heritage.”

Long studied by scientists and academics for its rare rocks and Roman and medieval historical features, the area was left bare when heavy machinery was used to pile up boulders dating back to the end of the last Ice Age at the top of the beach in 2018.


The coastal area has long been impacted by erosion, and the powerful, rising tides of the Menai Strait as well as being battered by storms.

But now sandy areas are visibly changing and disappearing as the sedimentary cliffs break down and a water channel on the beach has completely changed direction.

At the carpark and picnic area – the edges are cracking, leaving wooden benches and tables closer to the deteriorating shoreline, despite extensive historic tidal defence work consisting of nets of rocks and large boulders.

The problems have prompted some local concerns that the well-used recreation area, known for its stunning views – could eventually disappear altogether.

Along with the impact of climate changes and rising seas, Mr Phillips has also questioned whether new work to create tidal defences could be having an impact by redirecting the powerful waves towards the carpark and beach.

Gareth Phillips and Dr Nick Stuart investigate the crumbling edge of the car park impacted by sea erosion, Image by Dale Spridgeon

‘Jewel in the crown’

He said: “Lleiniog beach is an absolute treasure, it is the jewel in the crown of Ynys Môn.

“It is famed for its archaeological and geological wonders and it has suffered over the last few years. It had some appalling damage carried out by large earth moving machines on the apparent instructions of the council.

“We have had huge barriers built to protect newly built houses near the coast and we now have erosion at the carpark, which is an asset much appreciated by visitors and the community.

“We see the land is rapidly eroding, my plea is, please, please, the authorities that deal with care for these things, please look at and protect our heritage for now and evermore.”

One local who wished to remain anonymous said there had been “dramatic changes” to the area.

“It looks completely different to a year ago, the edges of car park are gradually disappearing, each time I go down there more has gone, the beach looks completely different.”

Another passer-by said: “It is just shocking at how much it is changing in such a short time at Lleiniog.”

Ynys Môn County Council and Natural Resources Wales were approached for comment.

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