Skegness sperm whale removal costs taxpayer £26,000

Workmen covering up a dead whale after loading it on a lorry Image copyright AFP/Getty Images
Image caption Workmen loaded the whales on to lorries for removal from the beach

The cost to the taxpayer for the disposal of three whale carcasses washed up on the east coast was £26,000, it has emerged.

The whales were found on the Lincolnshire coast - two at Gibraltar Point and another in nearby Skegness.

The operation to remove the animals took more than six hours and involved a team of 14 workers.

East Lindsey District Council said they were taken away and "melted down", not sent to landfill as previously stated.

James Gilbert, from the authority, said the 30 tonne animals were taken to a rendering plant, where the carcasses were recycled.

He said the operation was carried out with "the greatest of respect" and had been "incredibly sad".

"From talking to people in Skegness I think it has really touched the community," he added.

Image copyright PA
Image caption People from nearby towns came out to see the overnight operation

The sperm whales are believed to be from a pod spotted off the Norfolk coast.

Prior to the Skegness find, a whale washed up on a beach in Norfolk.

Another was later found on the site of a former bombing range near Wainfleet in Lincolnshire.

Image copyright Kurnia Aerial Photography
Image caption Hundreds of people turned out to see the mammals after they washed up

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