Warning after picture shows pair having bizarre barbecue on the side of capsized boat on River Wear

Photographs capture a pair grilling some burgers on top of a capsized boat in the River Wear – as calls continue to have the ‘hazard’ removed.

Wednesday, 7th April 2021, 4:39 pm

The wreckage of the Elegant II has been stuck in the river at Offerton Heugh, near Hylton Bridge since 2017.

Since then calls have been made for the fishing boat to be removed as some residents believe it is a ‘magnet’ for young people who could seriously injure themselves while attempting to explore the wreck.

Now a bizarre picture captured over the Easter weekend shows two people having a barbecue on top of the boat.

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Two people spotted having a barbecue on a capsized boat on the River Wear

The pair can be seen grilling burgers on the disposable barbecue on Sunday, April 5, just weeks after council bosses decided against taking action as they would be unlikely to claw their costs back.

Sunderland City Council said it wouldn’t remove the sunken boat as although the authority has the power to do so, there is no legal duty and councils are only able to recover money spent on removal is the vessel is ‘an obstruction or danger to the navigation of lifeboats,’ which it is not in this case.

Alan Liddle, who has campaigned for the boats removal said he was stunned when he saw that people had set up a barbeque on the stricken vessel.

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The boat pictured in 2017 shortly after it capsized

Alan said: "I couldn’t believe it. I just thought this proves my point that it is an attraction for people.

"It wasn’t even that warm on Sunday, so what is it going to be like when the lockdown eases and temperatures rise.

"It’s only a matter of time until a disaster happens."

The boat pictured before it capsized after it broke away from the mooring.

The spokesperson commented: “While not representing a navigational danger to other river users, anyone boarding this upturned, wooden hulled vessel is clearly putting themselves at risk and others who may need to rescue or assist them.”

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