“Dredging from a marina in Exmouth is being halted after sands on Teignmouth’s beach turned black at the weekend.
The contamination was a shock to local residents and businesses ahead of the all-important Easter break.
The town has worked hard to drive up bathing water quality standards in recent years but local people were annoyed when the Marine Management Organisation (MMO) granted a licence for the disposal of thousands of tonnes of silt from the marina in Exmouth close to their beach.
The MMO said it was suspending the licence “relating to the dredging of Exmouth Marina and disposal of materials at the Sprey Point site”.
It added: “The suspension will be active immediately once the notice is served on the licence holder.”
Heavy seas have washed away most of the black silt in the meantime.”