East Riding of Yorkshire Council has taken big steps forward in its bid to establish a sustainable approach to managing coastal erosion.
A series of actions has been agreed following a meeting of council representatives with Rory Stewart MP, Environment Minister at the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA), and East Yorkshire MP Sir Greg Knight.
The council and Sir Greg MP outlined how Holderness has the fastest eroding coastline in western Europe and urged Mr Stewart MP to support local initiatives to manage coastal erosion.
The meeting resulted in Mr Stewart MP agreeing to officials at DEFRA working with the council to develop a localized approach to coastal change management in the East Riding.
The Environment Minister also agreed to lobby the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) to request that the criteria for the Coastal Communities Fund (CCF) be extended to allow applications for coastal change mitigation and adaptation proposals.
The outcomes have been welcomed by the council, which in September hosted a visit by Mr Stewart MP to the East Riding to show him how coastal erosion was affecting the area.
The follow-up meeting to the site visit took place on 25 November in London and saw Sir Greg MP, Councillor Fraser, council chief executive Nigel Pearson and Alan Menzies present the council’s proposed approach to managing coastal change in the East Riding to the Minister.
The proposed approach includes:
- the extension of the Coastal Communities Fund (CCF) to allow funding applications for coastal change mitigation/adaptation;
- flexibility in the use of Defra’s Basic Erosion Assistance Grant (BEAG) to support people whose homes are affected by coastal erosion; and
- the development of a Coastal Change Management Framework by the council.
In addition, it was agreed that the council will continue to work with Defra and the Environment Agency to look at how a more strategic approach can be taken to the delivery of the BEAG and to develop a Coastal Change Management Framework for the East Riding, using examples of best practice nationally and locally.