Hill Head Sea Defence Phase 2

“The aim of this project is to develop, design and build a cost effective sea defence option, at Hill Head in Fareham, which maintains amenity and leisure access along this frontage for the lifetime of the structure.”

Why are we doing Phase 2? 

  • Phase 2 site preparation will start on 26th July and start construction on the 3rd July 2017 and continue for 13 weeks. The promenade will be closed during this period.
  • The existing gabion basket and concrete bagwork seawalls are unsuitable defences for an exposed coastal location
  • The seawalls have reached the end of their serviceable life and cannot withstand exposure to storm wave action
  • Increased frequency of storm events over the last 3 years has contributed to beach erosion and seawall deterioration, a trend that will continue
  • Doing nothing risks the loss of the much loved promenade and beach huts in the short term and Cliff Road and residential properties in the long term
  • This replacement seawall will reduce the risk of erosion to the cliff, keep the promenade open all year and will reduce damage to beach huts in severe weather conditions.

Important information to consider during construction

  • During construction, the promenade and some walk ways will be closed with diversion routes set up
  • Some beach huts will not be accessible from the 26th July and throughout construction – you will be contacted by the council if this affects you
  • The car park will be closed as this will be home to the temporary offices
  • We ask for general safety to be taken when near the construction with children and dogs so they do not enter the site area during construction hours. We also ask that you refrain from using the lower beach below the works as this may affect the birds that use the tidal area of this environmentally designated area.

Phase 2 preferred option

The preferred option is to build a sheet pile wall with concrete capping beam. The key features include:

  • Widens the promenade by approximately 1.5 metres (5 feet), improving public access along the frontage
  • Straightens out the “kink” in the promenade, a known weak spot
  • Provides an increased wall height by 0.6m (2 feet). This will address the current wave overtopping which has made the promenade impassable in previous storms and helps to protect the beach huts
  • The preferred option includes a barrier rail on top of the upstand, which we are working with our contractor to reduce the visual intrusion of Regulations, which came into force in 2015, state that there is a statutory requirement for designers to consider foreseeable risks and reduce these over the 50 year life of the structure. Due to the beach level changes that can occur with storm events at Hill Head, a drop to the beach from the promenade level is a foreseeable risk.  
To minimise these risks a stainless steel hand barrier will be installed on the upstand.

Artist impression of the proposed increased promenade with barrier rail and sea wall replacement.

Key advantages of the Phase 2 preferred option

  • The beach huts can remain in place for the duration of the works
  • This option has the least environmental impacts on the designated foreshore, birds and local badger
  • Shortest construction duration, minimising impacts to the local area
  • Simplest construction methods
  • The sheet pile wall is the most cost effective option
  • The existing seawall can be partially encapsulated within the new seawall, without the need for significant demolition

A Phase 2 leaflet is available here.

If you would like further information on the Hill Head Coastal Protection Scheme, please email info@escp.org.uk or visit Fareham Borough Council's website

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