Many locals will have noticed the changing ‘beach-scape’ over the last few weeks. Deep pools suddenly appeared on the shore trapping fish and attracting the curious. Suzanne Kelly investigates for HIP.

Conservation measures carried out at the end of April changed
the face of Hastings’ and St Leonards’ shoreline. These visibly-noticeable works along the coastline prompted questions from members of the public as to why large quantities of stone and shingle were being moved at the water’s edge stretching from the pier to West Marina.

A Hastings Borough Council spokesperson said: “We are currently undertaking our Phase Three coastal protection works. As part of these works, we are carrying out repairs and renewal of the groynes, minor repairs to the sea wall and later a period of beach recycling where we redistribute shingle that has moved eastwards along the beach back to areas where it is needed most.”

Curious pools on the coastline
PICTURE: Susan McFie

According to ClimateChangePost, an environmental news site, the UK’s erosion problems involve as much as 3000 km of coastal areas. The UK also has over 2000km of artificially-protected coast. Annual damages due to coastal erosion are expected to increase by 3-9 times, costing up to £126 million per year by the 2080s.

Hastings Borough Council’s spokesperson said: “The work we are carrying out will slow the movement of sediment along the upper shoreline and help us maintain the expected levels of coastal protection that we need in the future.” 

The sandstone cliffs on the east coast of Hastings have been battered by several storms in recent years causing several landslips. Hastings has 12km of coastline and has powers under the Coast Protection Act 1949 to carry out works to protect the coast from erosion.

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