Concrete evidence

THE mystery of the concrete blocks buried under Lancing Beach Green may now be solved, following more than 70 people coming forward to help.

Lancing Parish Council clerk Richard Wickens said many people had contacted him after the article in the Herald on April 29 - including some of the people who had worked on the project to bury the giant concrete blocks, which were part of the World War Two anti-tank defences on the beach.

Builders unearthed two blocks last month and soil samples have now been taken to see if they have contaminated the area.

Wing commander Geoffrey Shore said: "At the end of the war, in 1945, they had to get rid of the defences. They had to blow up all the mines. We used to hear them going up. The iron was fairly easily demolished and carried away.

"Then the last thing to happen was they had to get rid of the concrete blocks. The original plan was that they were going to form the beach path."

Although that plan was abandoned, some blocks were used for a small path on the green which can still be seen today.

Mr Shore said the blocks were 6ft by 6ft and were too big to be removed or blown up, so they were eventually buried.

An article in the Shoreham Herald, dated January 18, 1946, reported that hopes were high that the defences would be cleared by the summer.

The article said: "Mr F. Baddock, clerk to Lancing Parish Council, expects all tenders for removal of the 176 concrete blocks, block houses and gun emplacements, the network of tubular scaffolding and the barbed wire entanglements to be in by tomorrow."

The work was expected to last for three months and the Herald reported in March of the same year, complete with pictures, that the military was busy working on burying the blocks.