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Council approval for Century-long plan for coastal defenses

North East Lincolnshire council has greenlighted a plan which will form the blueprint for construction work to protect its coastline for the next 100 years.

The Shoreline Management Plan is part of the a wider management plan for the coastline stretching from Flamborough Head in Yorkshire to Gibraltar Point south of Skegness.

Jason Longhurst Assistant Executive Director for Housing, Transport and Planning said the plan would allow the council and Environment Agency to proactively protect the North Lincolnshire coast rather than waiting for the situation to become critical.

The plan, which is so far uncosted, includes a scheme for ongoing maintenance work to the flood defences from East Immingham to Cleethorpes.

It has rejected the option of a managed retreat from coastal erosion.

The report said: “The decision to ‘hold the line’ means that erosion of this frontage is prevented resulting in a reduction in supply of sediment to intertidal and subtidal habitats. The interruption of natural processes as well as coastal squeeze caused by sea level rise is likely to result in a loss of intertidal habitat within the Humber Estuary. The defended frontages are likely to require increasingly sizeable defences as they become more exposed to wave attack.”

Some £750,000 from the Environment Agency is already being spent on strengthening gabion defences on the front embankment at Humberston Fitties. They are expected to last until 2055.

At the Humberston Fitties conservation area, front line defences will be maintained until 2055, with second line defences, further back from the coast given priority subsequently.

The council will review the current approach of maintaining both lines of defence, within the next 50 years.

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