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Walton on the Naze Coastal Management

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Ed Lamb

on 6 February 2013

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Transcript of Walton on the Naze Coastal Management

Walton on the Naze Walton on the Naze Issues Hard Engineering Hard Engineering Walton on the Naze is a town on the south-east coast of the UK, home to 6,000 people. It is a popular location for tourists, especially because it has many coastal attractions, including a historical tower on the edge of the cliffs. It also is very important for wildlife – many birds migrate their every year. The Naze is a 'site of special scientific interest' (SSSI), as it has 55 million year old fossil bearing cliffs, making it very valuable for scientists. However, the town has encountered a huge problem: the Naze coastline is eroding very quickly – at about 2 meters per year, because the cliffs consist of weak and easily eroded rock like London clay. If nothing was done, the wildlife and tower would soon be gone, and Walton on the Naze would lose its scientific value. After lots of campaigning from locals, the Naze protection society decided to use hard engineering techniques in 2009 to protect the coastline – a project costing £1.2million, making sure the town is safe for the future. What coastal management has been used? How Successful? Coastal Management Fossilized Teeth found at the Naze Walton on the Naze Victorian Tower - Crag Walk Crag Walk is an 110 metre long walkway on the southern cliffs of Walton on the Naze, just in front of the tower and SSSI area. It is a clever solution for the coastal erosion problem - a simple design, which is both socially friendly, providing locals with a great view of the coastline, while also protecting the crumbing cliffs just behind. The walkway is built top of 16,000 tonnes of granite. Basically, this 'rock armour' forces the tide to spread out in the gaps in the rock, meaning it has less energy. This significantly slows erosion.
The Naze Protection Society says: 'This design can absorb wave energy and allow incoming tidal water to percolate through the structure and present a sustainable, low maintenance structure of natural materials that will reduce erosion by the sea to a minimum. A large placement of rocks at the far end of the wall will protect the platform from outflanking.' Groynes With the most valuable part of the cliffs protected by Crag Walk, Walton on the Naze has placed wooden groynes along the whole beach to prevent longshore drift. Wooden groynes are a cheap way to maintain beaches for tourists who visit there. Since the coastal management project was only completed in 2011, there is little evidence to show how effective it has been, but it is estimated that Crag Walk will slow the erosion to 20m over the next 70 - 100 years. This is a massive improvement compared to the original 2m per year, preserving the valuable assets of the Naze coastline.
David Gager, the chairman of the Naze Protection Society said: "The completion of this very significant project marks the beginning of a bright new future'' By Ed Lamb
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