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Question: Seeking success stories of shoreline protection

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 8 Oct 2012 08:38 UTCMon 8 Oct 2012 - 8:38 am UTC 

In an earlier question I sought a specific shaped manmade product to bring remedial action to shoreline erosion.

Governments with substantial budgets can invest millions to protect coastlines, harbours etc.

I seek success stories about moderate budget shoreline protection that can be undertaken by a not wealthy landowner.

Thank you.




Phil Answerfinder 


 8 Oct 2012 09:56 UTCMon 8 Oct 2012 - 9:56 am UTC 


Coastal erosion is a hot topic for many landowners and town councils along the east coast of England. Many millions of words have been written and spoken, and millions of pounds have been spent, all on trying to hold back the relentless sea. How the problem is to be dealt with has generated many ideas and possible solutions. I must admit that at the moment without any further research I'm not sure what the current UK policy is on flood defences.

What you may be interested in as it pertains directly to your question is two examples I know of where private landowners have been fighting the sea ( as well as the bureaucrats).

Their stories can be found on the website Natural Voice of Communities.

"..a resource to be used by all the various community action groups and individuals campaigning against Government policies on shoreline management. ..Whilst individual groups usually have specific problems they are facing, ideas of how to move forward, and usually their own methods and mechanisms for campaigning, this fragmentation often works against us as we are likely facing a common supposedly well organised adversary."

The site has news items on the two individuals who have been spending their own money on sea defences. Looking at their stories it's rather too early to say if they have been successful.
Peter Boggis has been fighting the sea for several years now - as well as the local council and government agencies over his plans. Start on this story and then click the tag Peter Boggis for more articles on his story.

Michael Kennedy is engaged in the same fight against the sea.

This farmer carried out a demonstration on installing flood defence with a helicopter. He paid for this in an attempt to encourage interested agencies to work together. It may be of interest.
The associated website is

Researchers may include this as part of their answer.





 8 Oct 2012 10:00 UTCMon 8 Oct 2012 - 10:00 am UTC 

Hi Brudenell,

You or a researcher might look for websites about just using bags of cement, which is pretty cheap stuff.  I saw a couple that talked about filling bags with a sand-cement mix,  Some places in the States, the road embankments up to the base of overpassing roads are just slightly overlapping rows of cement bags.  That may be a waste of material in that application, but it saves the work of making a better underground for carefully laid paving.




 8 Oct 2012 10:25 UTCMon 8 Oct 2012 - 10:25 am UTC 


They don't worry about the paper bags, just puncture them to let water harden the cement.  Since the bags eventually disappear, I expect that they are bio-degradable.

BUT:  salt water and cheap cement don't do so well together:

How long does that take, however?  Seems advisable to hope rain or another source of fresh water hardens the cement before the storms occur.

Marine cement is surely more expensive.

Of course, this method would not allow an ideally formed breakwater.

Good luck,  Myo




 8 Oct 2012 11:11 UTCMon 8 Oct 2012 - 11:11 am UTC 

Thank you for your post Phil. Very interesting. Peter Boggis is a very determined man. There are huge erosion challenges all over the world. In this day and age of global warming I can only expect the needs for coastal protection will increase. If only bureaucracies could pick up their pace and try to keep up with the need for solutions small and large. Trying to arrest sea action may seem futile but I feel time can be gained if well thought out methods are tested and put in place.




 8 Oct 2012 11:14 UTCMon 8 Oct 2012 - 11:14 am UTC 

Myo- Thank you for your comments. You have certainly put forward an inexpensive option. Ah, if one only had the resources for "an ideally formed breakwater."


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