Wallasea Island Design Approved

Members of Essex County Council’s Development and Regulation Committee resolved on July 28th to approve proposals for the final phase of the RSPB’s landscape-scale habitat creation scheme on Wallasea Island.

This last phase, subject to the completion of a legal agreement and the imposition of conditions, will involve the creation of an enormous complex of bird-rich coastal lagoon system on Wallasea Island.

Work is expected to begin in spring 2018 and consist of a novel system of bunds and culverts creating six major lagoons extending over almost 300 hectares.

For this final phase, the RSPB has again worked with ABPmer to design the restored wetland area. In this case the design will result in a coastal landscape that has never been created in this country before.

Colin Scott, Wallasea Island Project Director at ABPmer, said: “The first stage of the project, a 165 hectare managed realignment, was landscaped using Crossrail tunnel excavations and is performing as designed. Soon we will see the creation of the largest complex of shallow bird-rich saline lagoons in Northwest Europe.”

The Wallasea Island Wild Coast Project in Essex (near Rochford and Burnham-on-Crouch), is being implemented by the RSPB. It involves reshaping the island’s landform and allowing tidal waters from the adjacent Roach Estuary to flood back across the island.

For more than a decade ABPmer has been providing technical support and consenting advice to the RSPB on the Wallasea Project. It has designed the functionality of each phase of the scheme, led the Environmental Impact Assessment, prepared the required planning submissions and undertaken site monitoring.


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