Captured on camera – the final dramatic phases at Medmerry

The final dramatic stages of a £20m scheme on the West Sussex coast were captured in a BBC South news report and by two time lapse cameras  on the Environment Agency website.

The Medmerry Managed Realignment Scheme, at Selsey in West Sussex, is being carried out by Team Van Oord on behalf of the Environment Agency.

“Managed realignment” means building new defences inland from the coast and allowing a new intertidal area to form seaward of the new defences. ‘Intertidal’ refers to the land that is exposed at low tide and covered by the sea at high tide.

The time lapse cameras have captured the excavation of the breach area up to the back of the existing shingle bank.

The second stage of filming will show the removal of the existing outfall structure and excavating up to the back of the shingle bank. 
In early September at low tide the shingle bank will be removed and, as the tide rises, the sea will be allowed into the newly created wildlife habitat.

Medmerry, which is located between Selsey and Bracklesham in West Sussex, is one of the stretches of coastline most at risk of flooding in southern England

Following extensive consultation on the 2008 Pagham to East Head Coastal Defence Strategy, the managed realignment scheme became the adopted solution for Medmerry, allowing a new 300 hectare intertidal area to form seaward of the new defences.

The new defences will offer 1,000 times better flood protection for more than 300 homes and the main road into Selsey, and are designed to provide flood protection against rising sea levels over the next 100 years.

The scheme will also create important new wildlife habitat and open up new footpaths, cycleways and bridleways. The seaward area will create new intertidal and freshwater habitats to compensate for some of the losses of similar habitats as a result of flood defence works around the Solent.

Click here to view the final stages of the site works via the two time lapse cameras.

9 September 2013