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An independent strategic coastal partnership

Swanage Town Coastal Defence Scheme

The Swanage Town Coastal Defence Scheme aims to improve flood defences for Swanage town centre, including the lower High Street. Public spaces will be enhanced to make them fit for modern purpose and resilient to the increasing risk of flooding events.

Dorset Council in partnership with BCP Council, Environment Agency, Dorset Coast Forum, Swanage Town Council and the Swanage Coastal Change Forum, are looking at options for coastal flood defences to protect Swanage. The scheme is in the early stages and consultation will to incorporate feedback on the impacts of the delivery of a proposed flood defence scheme for Swanage.

The proposed scheme has been designed by flood and coastal erosion risk management authorities and at this stage we are consulting with key stakeholders directly impacted by the possible placement of the flood defences. The feedback from this consultation will be included in the outline business case to submit to the Environment Agency for funding to deliver a flood defence scheme. If funding is obtained, there will be further consultation with the wider community and specific groups as the scheme is developed.

Why are flood defences needed in Swanage?

In storm events or high tide and easterly winds, the current sea wall in Swanage suffers from overtopping. Overtopping is where waves are driven over the wall causing problems for both town centre businesses and the local community. This is an ongoing issue and has diverse implications for Swanage, impacting upon the environment, businesses and tourism. The impacts of these events on Swanage have demonstrated the need for improved protection.

Currently, the Environment Agency install seasonal temporary defences to protect the town during the winter months, but flood events are not just restricted to the winter season. With increasingly frequent storms events and rising sea levels, Coastal Engineers are currently working towards the provision of permanent flood defences for Swanage.

Dorset Coast Forum is planning community engagement for members of the public to have an opportunity to have their say on planned proposals for long-term alternatives.

Details of community engagement can be found on the website.


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