Take a photo to help monitor coastal change

Posted on 11th June 2024 | in Community

No, it’s not part of the Bord Waalk sculpture trail, but a strange fixture on the Braid has intrigued walkers for several weeks now.

The structure is part of the Coast Snap project which has just launched in this part of the world, with three posts already in situ and three more about to be placed.

Nick Brodin at the Amble Coast Snap post on the Coquet estuary/Braid

The project encourages members of the public to help scientists monitor the coast by sending in their photos. The wooden structure is basically a giant monopod with a smartphone mount, on which people place their mobile phone to take an image of the same view.

This Coast Snap project is part of the Berwickshire and Northumberland Marine Nature Partnership, whose offices are at County Hall in Morpeth. Partnership Officer Nick Brodin told The Ambler that the original idea for Coast Snap came from a project at the University of New South Wales, Australia. The idea has now taken root all over the world.

“It’s basically a citizen scientist monitoring project,” said Nick. “We want to get a regular supply of photos from the locations so we can use them to monitor coastal change. We’ve chosen places with good public footfall and a dynamic habitat, and we will be able to see how they change over time.”

Put your smartphone in the cradle to take the photo

The Coquet estuary was identified as an important area to monitor because it is part of the Northumberland Marine Special Protection Area (SPA) and provides feeding grounds for important seabirds, such as terns and eiders.

The team work with Dr Seb Pitman at the Geography department at Newcastle University, who will use the images to help measure beach levels and see how the land is changing over time. They will also be able to use the information to monitor storm levels and its effects on the area.

There are similar Coast Snap posts at Tweedmouth and Beadnell, with another due at Coldingham Bay, and two at South Northumberland very soon. You can find Amble’s Coast Snap post right next to the Flock Sphere on the Braid.

Members of the public are encouraged to take photos using the cradle on the post and email them with the date and time to marine.partnership@northumberland.gov.uk or upload them to social media with the hashtag #CoastSnapAmble. There’s also an app you can download directly onto your phone.

Already the feedback has been very positive, with over 30 images sent in the first three weeks, and Nick wanted to thank those who have taken part.

“It’s only been a few weeks, but there’s been a good reaction so far. We’re very pleased with the response and we’d like to thank everyone who has sent in their photos.”

Anna Williams

See more at www.xbordercurrents.co.uk/projects/coastsnap/


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