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December 12 2013.

Seaford Museum’s popular “Sea Breezes and Sea Beans” 2013 special exhibition will be drawing to a close at the end of the year. To mark the event the Museum is offering free admission to the public on Sunday 15th December 2013, from 11.00am until 4.00pm.

The recent storms and heavy seas have once again reminded the residents of Seaford, and visitors, that the town has always enjoyed a mixed relationship with the sea. But without these periods of turbulence, the opportunities for making some exciting beachcombing finds would be greatly reduced.

Whilst some of the debris washed up on our beaches is the carelessly abandoned rubbish of the modern age, occasionally amongst the trash are some of the treasures of the oceans which have travelled many miles across the Atlantic Ocean from the Caribbean or the coast of South America, including some exotic seeds.

“During the past year we have been able to show our visitors samples of the items that can be found on the beach, what they are, and where they might have come from,” commented Museum Vice-Chairman David Swaysland. “In July, Dr. Ed Jarzembowski, our Museum Curatorial Advisor and expert beachcomber led a beach walk. It was a hot and calm day, not the best for beachcombing, but the people who took part found the exercise really interesting. In fact, it lasted a lot longer than we expected!

“Amongst the stuff to be found on Seaford beach are the more common items such as seaweeds, shells, mermaids’ purses, (the egg cases from rays), and cuttlefish. There’s drift wood, which could just be the remains of an abandoned pallet or a ship’s deck cargo washed over the side in a storm, but might also include the remains of a wrecked ship. Look carefully for possible green marks left by copper nails in ships’ planks or rusty iron bolts. If you examine the shingle you can also find fossils, rocks and minerals amongst the brown and grey flints. All have a tale to tell. As well as the inevitable discarded plastic trash, people have found iron, brass, copper, lead and aluminium artefacts from sea, land and air transport, military activity and fishing.

“But remember, although beachcombing can be great fun, the sea can be dangerous, and even when the wind isn’t blowing a gale, the waves can have a very powerful undertow, so take great care.”

The “Sea Breezes and Sea Beans” exhibition was supported by the British Ecological Society, which marked its Centenary earlier in the year.

Further information about this and other Seaford Museum activities may be found on the Museum’s website: