The steering group for the Sidmouth and East Beach Management Plan (BMP) has met to discuss the shortlist options as part of a consultation process to reach a preferred option to manage coastal and flood defenses for Sidmouth seafront and East Beach.
The meeting took place on Thursday 16 June 2016 at Kennaway House in Sidmouth – the day after the public consultation commenced on the shortlist options, which was also held at this venue.
The BMP’s aims are to continue to protect Sidmouth and East beach against coastal erosion and flooding in an integrated, justifiable and sustainable way across both Sidmouth Town Beach and East Beach, as well as to reduce the rate of erosion to the east of the River Sid.
Coastal expert Alan Frampton of CH2M – East Devon District Council’s coastal flood and erosion risk management consultants on this project – introduced the four shortlist options to the members of the Steering Group and explained their purpose, as well as the technical, environmental and economic benefits of each option.
Each option was considered and explained and Option 4 within the shortlist appeared of particular interest to the Sidmouth members of the steering group.
Alan Frampton explained how CH2M had arrived at the proposal for four offshore breakwaters, running parallel to Sidmouth Town Beach and East Beach, and how this breakwater arrangement creates a more stable beach than angled breakwaters.
It was stressed that the size, placement and orientation of the reefs could be modified following more detailed modelling.
The Sidmouth community representatives of the steering group proposed that a variation on Option 4 be included. This variation, which comprises angled offshore breakwaters tapering towards East Beach, will be included in the revised short list appraisal with sensitivity testing of the key differences from Option 4.