Coast Protection and Flood Defence

The Council has a coastline of 60km and maintains the sea defence structures along 18.5km of this frontage. These defences protect the towns of Harwich, Dovercourt, Walton on the Naze, Frinton on Sea, Holland on Sea, Clacton and Brightlingsea.

Works undertaken range from day to day maintenance of promenades and seawalls to the design and implementation of major capital schemes costing many millions of pounds. Each year several sections of the sea defences are renewed as part of a rolling programme of special maintenance schemes funded from the Council’s Revenue Budgets.

Larger schemes are produced to comply with Defra guidelines and their High Level Targets for coast protection.

All works are designed in house using modern surveying techniques and the latest computer aided design technology.

Other work carried out includes the maintenance of the cliff paths and slopes.

Current and completed coast protection works around the district

Cliff stabilisation, Clacton and Holland on Sea

A £5 million project to shore up cliffs along the Holland-on-Sea seafront will begin this summer, now planning permission has been granted.

The scheme was unveiled last year, and since a public exhibition in October 2017 which showed strong support for the plans, the team has been busy working on various aspects of the project.

Phases one and two focus on the area under the Kings Cliff Hotel, between Hazelmere Road and Queensway. The scheme includes new drainage, sheet piled walls, and an easy access ramp down the cliff.

Anglian Water has provided £3m of funding for the project, with the rest coming from Tendring District Council (TDC) and cash left-over from the £36m new beach scheme.

Reptile-proof fencing was installed in March around phases one and two of the scheme, with the animals set to be relocated to nearby slopes before construction begins.

A planning application for the scheme was approved by TDC’s Planning Committee on 26 June.

The tender process has also now been completed and the winning contractor is JacksonHyder. TDC is in discussion with JacksonHyder about the schedule of works, and more details will be made public shortly.

Construction is scheduled to begin in August, and is expected to be completed late Spring 2019.

The Essex and South Suffolk Shoreline Management Plan (SMP)

The Essex and South Suffolk Shoreline Management Plan covers approximately 440km of coast from Landguard Point in Felixstowe to Two Tree Island in the Thames Estuary, including Southend.  It will determine the best ways to look after this part of the coast in a sustainable way for the next 100 years.

The public consultation took place from March to June 2010.  There was an extremely good response, with the Environment Agency receiving over 180 formal responses.  Officers and local councillors considered which comments would lead to changes in the draft SMP document and in particular where comments would lead to a change in flood risk management policy for a frontage. The Shoreline Management plan was then approved. For more information go to the website.

Contact Details

If you would like to know more about our coast protection projects, please contact or call 01255 686956 or 686975.

Useful links and documents

Environment Agency

Essex County Council - Wildlife and Biodiversity

Essex Wildlife Trust

UK Fossils Network

Natural England

Naze Tower

Walton on the Naze official website


Essex and South Suffolk Shoreline Management Plan

Local Flood Risk Management Strategy

Last updated on: 19/09/2018 - 10:34