Coastal erosion

Thousands 'at risk' from coastal erosion

Local Democracy Reporting Service

Hengistbury Head

More than 6,000 homes and businesses in Poole Bay could be at risk from coastal erosion unless they are continually protected, a council report has said.

BCP Council commissioned the environmental impact assessment ahead of a new phase of coastal defence works between Poole and Christchurch, starting next year.

The works are part of a £43m scheme due to last until 2032, the Local Democracy Reporting Service said.

They will include the replacement of the 80-year-old "Long Groyne" at Hengisbury Head (pictured) which is "dissolving".

The report by WSP UK says most of the groynes, which have a life expectancy of 25 years, had reached the end of their serviceable life - 30 had so far been replaced with about 30 more due to be replaced over the next 12 years.

Council on verge of 'climate emergency'

Karen Dunn

Local Democracy Reporter

A coastal county in West Sussex is on the verge of declaring a climate emergency after considering a report which predicted a one metre rise in sea levels.

The cabinet of Arun District Council met on Monday to discuss the report from the Committee on Climate Change (CCC).

The independent body set up to advise the government has warned of a possible rise in sea levels which would put more than 500,000 properties at risk of flooding nationwide.

The report also said the public did not have "clear and accurate information" about coastal erosion.

Council leader James Walsh warned: "We are in the front line as a coastal authority... we need to up our game."

Martin Lury, cabinet member for planning, agreed, saying: "I’m thinking of declaring a climate change emergency."

Carolyn: Living On A Cliff Edge

Carolyn's fighting to save her home from falling into the sea.
Carolyn lives in an old coastguard cottage at Cuckmere Haven in Sussex, perched on the edge of a cliff, high above the sea. Her house is vulnerable to storms, coastal erosion, and rising sea levels—threats amplified by climate change.

She talks with producer Meara Sharma about why she's fighting to save her home from falling into the sea.

Produced by Meara Sharma
A Somethin' Else production for BBC Radio 4