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Coastal Habitat and Processes
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County Durham's northern coastline is composed of glacial drift lying on a bed of magnesian limestone. Cliffs up to 80 feet high are washed by the North Sea and subjected to waves which may have travelled hundreds of miles, creating the profiles and features which make the coastline so interesting.

Red Acre Beach, Seaham

Two estuaries, the Wear to the north and the Tees to the south form it's borders, the Wear having the greater impact on the coastline at Seaham, depositing silt and other materials on the beaches. Seaham's coastline consists of sand, shingle and rock. To the south are beaches which are recovering from decades of dumping from the now defunct coal industry.

Cliffs south of Seaham Harbour

The rocky shore provides a home for common coastal plants and animals, with an occasional  rarity.
This is a coastline offering an interesting range of contrasts for the visitor: erosion, geology, questions of sustainability and economic use.
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A Legend of Buried Treasure
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