Artificial reef that will act like a huge wave machine for south coast surfers

It may look like a shipwreck off the coast of Bournemouth, but this sunken structure is Europe's first artificial surf reef taking shape.

The man-made structure is about the size of a football pitch and will double the size of the waves crashing into the shore at Bournemouth in Dorset a surfing mecca.

Thousands of tons of sand have been stockpiled on the beach and pumped into giant textile bags that are anchored to the sea bed.

Specialist builders returned this spring to complete the reef 210m from shore and again built up the huge pyramid of sand.

The attraction, that will produce 13ft high waves by boosting the natural height of the breakers, is due to be finished by October.

It was designed by ASR Ltd, a company founded by oceanographer Dr Kerry Black, who travelled the entire Pacific Rim to study 44 of the world's best surf breaks.

He said: 'Surfers like a waves that breaks where you can surf across the face. To do that, you need to break up the regular form of the beach and the reef does that for you.'

Paul Clarke, from the Bournemouth Surfing Centre, said: 'The reef spells a boom time for the area.

'Surfing first hit our beaches in the 1960s and today Bournemouth has the third largest population of surfers in the country.

'For the 10,000 locals and a catchment that includes London, the reef promises to be a huge attraction, the nearest thing to an Atlantic roller this side of Cornwall.

'It will also provide a habitat for greater biodiversity.'

The reef is part of a wider project to regenerate the Boscombe seafront area of Bournemouth.

Luxury flats have been built along with a restaurant, surf shop and changing facilities.
About 60 posh beach huts, or surf pods, that were designed by Wayne Hemingway have also been built and are selling for up to £90,000

Source: MailOnline
By Daily Mail Reporter

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