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Protecting the Hayling coastline from Mother Nature

RESTORATION Diggers on Hayling beach last year as part of the beach recycling scheme

By Jeff Travis
Published in the Portsmouth News on Monday 27th February 2012

DIGGERS will be a familiar sight on Hayling beach for the next few weeks as 36,000 tons of shingle is dumped on the coast.

The work will protect Eastoke, a low-lying peninsula, from flooding.

The scheme, carried out by Havant Borough Council contractors, is vital to protect thousands of homes in the area.

Every year sections of the beach are washed away due to waves coming in from the Atlantic.

Unlike Portsmouth and Gosport, Eastoke does not have the protection of the Isle of Wight.

The shingle will be moved from sections of the beach where it has accumulated to depleted areas at Eastoke.

The work, which starts on March 1 and is due to take four weeks, is being funded by a £150,000 grant from the Environment Agency.

Plans to further improve flood protection at Eastoke are to go on show in April.

Cllr David Guest, who oversees coastal management in Havant borough, said: ‘“Beach recycling” attracts a lot of interest on Hayling Island, with many people curious about the large machinery on show.

‘The Eastoke Study has shown that this is one important element of our strategy to help stop erosion and flooding in this area and our actions are having a positive impact.

‘A public exhibition will take place in April to show the progress of the coastal protection project and the proposed work to further improve defences. This will be a great opportunity for the coastal team to answer questions and explain in more detail the vital work they are doing to protect our coastline.’

Proposed improvements include new rock groynes to reduce the movement of beach material and a wall of rocks buried at the top of the beach to protect homes and the Sandy Point Nature Reserve.

The beach will remain open to the public, but cones and warning signs will be in place to inform people about the route the heavy machinery will take.

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