Holy Island causeway blocked by people 'wanting to view the tide coming in'

Credit: HM Coastguard

It's not unusual for the coastguard to be called out to rescue people who've become trapped after ignoring the tide times while trying to reach Lindisfarne, but this season has seen a new phenomenon.

A coastguard rescue team was called out to Holy Island - because sightseers had wanted to watch the tide come in.

On Monday HM Holy Island Coastguard was forced to issue a new kind of warning, after a group of people blocked the road in an apparently deliberate attempt to watch the tide rushing in to cover it.

A spokesperson for the team said they had been initially called to concerns about two people said to be snorkelling near the bridge on the causeway.

By the time they arrived there was no sign of anyone in the water. But, the spokesperson said:

45 minutes after the official closing time, the causeway had become blocked by vehicles wanting to view the tide coming in. Please be aware that the water covers the road at different points, which can quickly cut you off. Check the tide times before travelling to Holy Island and make sure you and your vehicle are completely clear of the causeway before tide time.

HM Coastguard Holy Island, Spokesperson

Digital signs installed on the approach to the causeway make clear what each days' safe crossing times are, and motorists are regularly warned not to risk driving onto the causeway outside these times.

When the coastguard posted this latest update on Facebook, many people commented, sharing their frustration at the "irresponsible" drivers.

One person said: "Thank you for your hard work, to be honest I thought I had heard it all, how wrong was I? just my opinion of course, but what absolute idiots."