Contractors have begun works on a £5million scheme to stabilise and improve cliffs in Holland-on-Sea.
The project will see a stretch of the cliffs between Gunfleet Sailing Club and the Flags Café stabilised, which will both protect them from future collapse and allow better access to the beach from the seafront road, particularly for wheelchair users and those with mobility problems.
The main contractor, Jackson Civil Engineering, began preliminary works on site in late August, and a site compound has been set up at Hazlemere car park.
Now beach huts along the promenade where work is taking place have been relocated to the compound, while memorial benches are also being securely stored for the duration of the project.
Permanent works will begin this month, with the installation of structures to support the slope. These works include piling, with a large crane on site, and will take around two months to complete.
Slope regrading – making the slopes shallower – will start in March 2019, and the whole project is due to be completed, weather permitting, by Summer 2019.
The scheme has been funded by Tendring District Council (TDC) and cash left-over from the £36m new beach scheme.
Contractors are also working with Holland Haven Primary School on a pupil art project connected to the scheme.
Mick Skeels, TDC Cabinet Member for Leisure and Tourism, said once completed the project would really open up the seafront and new beaches.
“Our new beaches formed with the recent sea defence scheme are fantastic, but to get the most out of them we want to make them more accessible to people,” Cllr Skeels said.
“This project allows us to do that, while protecting the cliffs for years to come as well.
“I am glad to see construction is underway, including the delicate process of moving the beach huts, and I cannot wait to see the cliffs when the work is completed.
“I would also remind members of the public not to try to access the site or go through the fencing – this is after all a construction site, and it has been fenced off for safety reasons.”