Clacton sea defence plan 'could cost £27m'

The view towards Clacton from Holland on Sea Tendring District Council said its coast was its most important asset

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Replacing sea defences for the north Essex coast could cost up to £27m to install, it has emerged.

Conservative-run Tendring District Council asked consultants Mott MacDonald for options on protecting the Clacton Pier to Holland Haven stretch.

Five proposals - including doing nothing - are now out for public consultation.

The council said if it did nothing, 3,000 homes would be claimed by the sea within 100 years.

Council leader Peter Halliday said Tendring's 36 mile (57km) coastline and award-winning beaches were the district's greatest asset.

"What we have been working on is a plan which will protect our environment and at the same time help us to develop a thriving tourist industry which is absolutely vital to the Tendring economy," he said.

Four of the options involve replenishing the beach and installing different combinations of groynes or, in one case, a rock revetment.

The council plans to submit a final document to the Environment Agency by May seeking grant money.

If successful, the council said work could start in 2015.

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