St Andrews beaches damaged by bonfires

Damage caused by a bonfire.
Damage caused by a bonfire.

Bonfires on St Andrews’ iconic beaches are damaging the environment and putting people’s health at risk, according to two local organisations.

Fife Coast and Countryside Trust and St Andrews Environmental Network are calling on beach users to stop burning pallets for bonfires on the town’s beaches.

The appeal was issued after staff from both organisations were left cleaning up after a bonfire on Castle Sands earlier this week.

They said St Andrew’s “beautiful beaches are being blighted by this behaviour”, explaining that it damages the marine environment and puts people’s health at risk.

They said this “unacceptable behaviour” must stop.

A spokesperson for the two groups added: “We are therefore appealing to all local business to stop giving pallets to the general public – there are many community groups that will use pallets.

“For example, St Andrews’ Men’s Shed upcycle pallets into furniture.

“We would ask all beach users to respect the environment and follow the Scottish Outdoor Access Code, especially in respect of lighting open fires – ‘keep them small and remove all traces of the open fire before you leave’.

“Our beautiful beaches should be a safe environment for all to enjoy.”

Concerns have also been expressed in the past about fires, and fireworks, damaging the famous dunes at West Sands.

Restoration projects have been organised to help repair patches of the dunes which have been damaged.

There have also been complaints about the amount of litter left strewn along the beaches in the last few years, with the trust also raising concerns.