Fareham & Gosport Tracer Study

The River Hamble to Portchester Coastal Flood and Erosion Risk Management Strategy (RHPS) has developed a coastal processes study for this section of coastline. To supplement the coastal processes study and improve the current understanding of sediment transport along the open coast, a sediment tracer study has been developed and monitored over a 6 month period at three different locations.


The deployment sites chosen for this study were Solent Breezes, Lee-on-the-Solent and Stokes Bay.

The tracer pebbles were deployed in batches of 100 pebbles, with 500 pebbles deployed in total at each site during March 2013. The pebbles were deployed at pre-defined locations, approximately equal distances apart and designed to highlight the localised coastal processes along that particular stretch of frontage. At Solent Breezes, the pebbles were deployed either side of a proposed drift divide along this stretch of coastline. At Stokes Bay, part of the deployment focused on the outlet of the River Alver and the movement of material within the vicinity of this zone.

At all sites, pebbles were deployed at the location of profile lines monitored by the Regional Monitoring Programme and released at the approximate point of Mean Sea Level (MSL). This would ensure a consistent release elevation across all beaches, with the pebbles spread approximately evenly over this point.

Surveys to detect these pebbles were conducted in March, April, May and August. The results show the movement of pebbles along the beach frontage, including around structures such as groynes, and have helped inform our knowledge of sediment transport within these areas.


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