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Selsey coastal protection work begins


Urgent, major coastal protection works will start at Selsey on Monday 6 December 2010 to protect homes along a one-kilometre stretch of West Beach. The works are expected to extend the life of the coastal defences and protect homes in this area from flooding and erosion for an additional ten years. Without these works, the homes will remain at great risk.

Following funding approval from the Environment Agency, Chichester District Council has appointed Mackley Construction Ltd to carry out the construction project.

Professional consultants Royal Haskoning will supervise the work.

The project will include:
strengthening works to weaker sections of the sea wall;
repair works to groynes; and,
a beach recharge.

This involves importing shingle and placing it on the beach to increase its height and extent to replace shingle lost through natural coastal processes.

"We must carry out this work to protect homes now as it will become much harder to achieve funding for projects like this in the future. Unfortunately, the only option is to bring shingle to the beach by road. We hope that this won't prove to be too inconvenient to residents, and apologise in advance for any disruption. W

e have been working with West Sussex County Council and the contractor to find a route for the lorries that will minimise the effects to residents," says Cllr John Connor, Portfolio Holder for the Environment at Chichester District Council.

Following discussions with West Sussex County Council, shingle loaded lorries will travel along the A286 Stockbridge Road past Donnington, then via the B2145 to the end of Hillfield Road, Selsey. Returning empty lorries will only use the B2145 via Hunston. "Mackelys aim to keep the disturbance down to a minimum. They will be monitoring their vehicles throughout the project with tracking devices which record speed and the route used," adds Cllr Connor.

A total of 33,700 tonnes (25,650 cubic metres) of shingle will be needed for the project. Mackleys will start preparation work onsite on Monday 6 December 2010. The scheme will take around 13 weeks to complete, but work will stop between Christmas and New Year. The vehicles will be of a similar size to gritter lorries, and will start transporting the shingle to Selsey from Monday 13 December. There will be an average of four lorries an hour, operating Monday to Friday, 7.30am to 5.30pm.

John Napper, Vice Chairman of West Beach Selsey Residents Group, emphasised the importance of the project: "We fully appreciate that a project of this size, with the substantial increase in lorry movements during the day on the B2145 & B2201, will be of concern to all villages affected and, of course, to Selsey residents themselves, but without this essential maintenance of the existing coastal defences and beach replenishment, it is inevitable that sections of the seawall will fail.

Chichester District Council's determination to ensure that this essential maintenance is undertaken, and their close co-operation with the Environment Agency in obtaining the necessary funding for the work, is to be commended."