BAM Nuttall wraps up installation of sea defences in Withernsea

BAM Nuttall, working on behalf of East Riding of Yorkshire Council, has completed the installation of sea defences in Withernsea, helping to protect the town from the threat presented by North Sea coastal erosion.

Work on the £7million South Withernsea Coastal Defence Scheme, which began April 2019, has extended the existing defences southwards with 400 metres of rock armour, and includes a new 100-metre terminal rock structure at the end of the defences.

Just under 70,000 tonnes of rock armour was imported by sea from Norway to construct the defence. Major construction work was also carried out at the site in order to reduce the gradient of the cliff face and to recover rock from the existing terminal structure to incorporate within the new revetment.

Josh Riley, BAM Nuttall Site Agent for the South Withernsea Coastal Defence Scheme, said: “Erosion on this section of the coast has become a major concern, with the average rate increasing from 4m to 6m a year. In some areas near Withernsea, this has reached 12m, so action to halt the erosion was urgent.”

“Our solution uses rock armour, formed of rocks weighing between 6 and 15 tonnes, in an interlocking but porous structure that can withstand the wave action that is the primary cause for coastal erosion,” added Riley.

The scheme received £3m of funding from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) towards the cost of the project.

Photo: BAM Nuttall