Coverack North Shore Coastal Protection

North Corner Cliff at Coverack Beach.

 

Update July 2022

The project is now underway and progressing well. Our works compound is in place and the road has been widened to mitigate the need for a closure as much as is possible. Heavy plant has been delivered to the beach using a landing craft, and haulage routes, and an equipment storage platform, have been constructed.

During August 6,500 tonnes of rock armour for the sea defences, will be arriving by barge and will be stockpiled on the beach. There are a number of factors still to consider, including tide times and weather conditions, but these deliveries are likely to be once a week, and early in the morning.

Ahead of the deliveries the cliff will be graded (shaped), and the toe will be excavated.

Some of these works can unfortunately be noisy, and we’re very grateful to you for your patience. We have an environmental specialist who will be carrying out noise monitoring periodically, to ensure permissive levels are not exceeded. We also have  ecological surveys underway throughout, and are working closely with the Marine Management Organisation, Natural England and the Cornwall Ecological Society.

We will always do our best to accommodate the day-to-day requirements of those nearby our  works, and access will be maintained as much possible.

Emergency access will be maintained at all times.

Please be supportive by respecting the team, signage and the safety instructions given.

Getting in touch

If you have any questions regarding this works, please get in touch by emailing: contracting@cormacltd.co.uk

You can report an issue on a road, highway or footway on the Cornwall Council website: https://www.cornwall.gov.uk/reportroad

North Shore Coverack 

 


Rates of coastal erosion are expected to increase throughout this century because of the increasing frequency and magnitude of storms and rising sea levels as a result of climate change. This coastal protection scheme is needed to improve Coverack’s resilience to these future impacts.

The proposed scheme will maintain the shoreline by preventing further erosion of the cliff from coastal processes. Principally this will protect, and avoid the loss of, the key access road for the village (B3294), up to four properties and also the adjacent common land, thus fulfilling Cornwall Council’s policy to ensure the continued sustainability of coastal communities. Without the scheme, this key access road to the village would potentially be lost to the sea within the next decade or two.

Coverack Sea Defence Work Leaflet

Coverack Sea Defence Work Leaflet (single pages)

Coverack North coast protection design

Shoreline Management Plan

Questions and answers

  1. Will the usable beach area be reduced?
  2. Why is additional rock armour being used and not just a masonry wall like the existing southern section?
  3. How long will protection be provided for?
  4. Will the coast path need to be closed for the works?
  5. How long will the works last?
  6. Will I still be able to drive to get from one end of the village to the other?
  7. Will I still be able to access the beach?
  8. In view of the climate emergency that Cornwall Council have declared how will you minimise carbon emissions during the works?
  9. Where is the rock armour coming from and how will it be delivered?
  10. Will the geological features on the beach be damaged by the works?
  11. Will the proposed works be timed to avoid the main holiday season?
  12. Why doesn’t the new sea defence join up with the existing sea wall in front of Spindrift?
  13. Will I still be able to access the lane directly adjacent to the proposed work site?
  14. Will I still be able to access the public car park, or will it be closed?
  15. Will the unprotected cliff slope at the northern end of the planned scheme be at risk from increased erosion due to the scheme?

 

1. Will the usable beach area be reduced?

Following completion of construction and during the operational phase there will be some reduction in usable beach space due to rock armour being used as part of the proposed scheme. There will still be useable beach at mid and low tide, once the proposed scheme is in place, although at high tide this will be more restricted.

During the temporary works, machinery, equipment and materials will be using the foreshore and beach area. For health and safety reasons there will be temporary restrictions in place which may include fenced off areas to separate the public from construction activities.

2. Why is additional rock armour being used and not just a masonry wall like the existing southern section?

The scheme is comprised of a retaining wall and rock revetment to provide a robust defence which prevents erosion and reduces the likelihood of wave overtopping impacting the road above (B3294). The rock armour is more effective at dissipating storm waves compared to vertical wall type structures and also reduces the risk of undermining, scour and beach lowering.

3. How long will protection be provided for?

The proposed development is anticipated to have a design life of 50-years, with allowances for climate change. This is in line with some of the existing coastal defences and the proposed development has been designed not to prejudice future coastal management projects in the future, the requirement for which will be kept under review.

4. Will the coast path need to be closed for the works?

The South West Coast Path will remain open during construction. This requirement will be covered within a Construction Traffic Management Plan (CTMP) that will be implemented through the planning process. The CTMP has been submitted to the local planning authority for consideration as part of the planning application process.

5. How long will the works last?

The construction works are planned to start between November 2021 and February 2022 (subject to receiving the necessary planning permission, other consents and funding). The construction period is anticipated to last six to nine months.

6. Will I still be able to drive to get from one end of the village to the other?

The temporary works and construction of the scheme will impact on the road (B3294) at the southern end of the scheme. Currently options to mitigate this and reduce the disruption are being explored in liaison with potentially impacted landowners. The aspiration is to limit any closure to an absolute minimum through traffic management and potentially temporary diversion of the road around the pinch point. If there is a need for any temporary closures this will be communicated in advance.

7. Will I still be able to access the beach?

Yes, public access to the beach will remain unaffected, both access and egress will be possible via the existing steps located to the south of the proposed scheme.

8. In view of the climate emergency that Cornwall Council have declared how will you minimise carbon emissions during the works?

We will seek to reduce the carbon footprint by sourcing rock from local quarries and by optimising transport of materials to the site. Where possible low carbon reduction techniques will be adopted and the scheme has been designed to provide a low maintenance solution, thus reducing future carbon impacts.

9. Where is the rock armour coming from and how will it be delivered?

Although rock source options are still being explored, the rock will be sourced from an appropriate local quarry. Rock may comprise of gabbro or granite, subject to planning conditions and availability of suitable material. It is likely that the material will be delivered to the site by barge, thus reducing the potential impacts to the road network from lorry movements.

10. Will the geological features on the beach be damaged by the works?

Throughout the detailed design of the scheme, we have worked closely, and sought advice from, Natural England and the Cornwall Geoconservation Group to ensure impacts on special interest features of the geological Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) are minimised and acceptable. Tapering and reduction of the footprint of the rock armour has been incorporated into the design to minimise coverage of the geological feature at the southern end of the scheme. Finally, during the construction phase, appropriate mitigation techniques will be agreed in consultation with Natural England and the Cornwall Geoconservation Group to avoid or minimise impacts to the geology, e.g. recording of exposed geology and protection of rock outcrops.

For further information please see Chapter 5 in the Environmental Statement by visiting the Cornwall Council online planning register and searching for the application reference number (PA21/05228).

11. Will the proposed works be timed to avoid the main holiday season?

The construction works are planned to start between November 2021 and February 2022 (subject to receiving the necessary planning permission, other consents and funding). Depending on actual start date, some impact to the holiday season may be unavoidable but measures will be put in place to minimise disruption.  Please also see response to question five above for more details.

12. Why doesn’t the new sea defence join up with the existing sea wall in front of Spindrift?

The key driver for the scheme is to prevent the risk of erosion that will impact on the B3294, which the proposed development is addressing within the funding available. The remainder of the unprotected cliff slope will be kept under review for potential future coastal management.

13. Will I still be able to access the lane directly adjacent to the proposed work site?

There are no proposals to close off this access lane that would require a traffic regulation order. Part of the lane has been included within the boundary of the project for the purpose of demonstrating our access into the site as a requirement of the planning application. If any required temporary restrictions are identified (for example, to bring plant equipment and materials onto site) the process will be addressed within the construction traffic management plan (CTMP). The CTMP has been submitted to the local planning authority for consideration as part of the planning application process.

14. Will I still be able to access the public car park, or will it be closed?

The common land will be predominantly used for storage of equipment, materials and site welfare, however, part of the tiered car park will also be needed. We will minimise disruption and the loss of parking spaces and will discuss this with the Parish Council as the construction phase is planned.

15. Will the unprotected cliff slope at the northern end of the planned scheme be at risk from increased erosion due to the scheme?

Erosion is an ongoing risk to this section of undefended shoreline and without the wall the entire shoreline would continue to erode at the current rate. This occurs as small sections of the cliff fail, supplying material to the beach that protects the toe of the cliff. This process takes place in periodic events, resulting in an irregular cliff line. The location and timing of these erosion events are not predictable, however over the long term an average erosion rate can be observed along the shoreline. All properties will experience similar erosion rates over the long term but with short term variations.

The new defence will create a hard point, but unprotected areas are likely to continue to erode at the same or lower long-term average rates.

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