Exmouth tidal defence scheme gets planning go-ahead

Mary Youlden
Authored by Mary Youlden
Posted Wednesday, January 16, 2019 - 6:48pm

The Environment Agency scheme to reduce the risk of tidal flooding to more than 1,800 properties was granted planning permission on Tuesday by East Devon District Council’s Development Management Committee. 

This flagship £12m scheme is being funded by Government grant in aid and will reduce the risk of flooding to over 1,400 homes and 400 businesses in Exmouth.

Under the Hybrid application Full Planning Permission was granted for the tidal defence scheme comprising of flood walls, embankments and flood gates for the areas around the Estuary and Camperdown Creek.

Listed Building Consent for strengthening works, insertion of drainage holes, installation of square plates and works associated with installation of flood gates and posts to Exmouth Sea Wall was approved.

Ben Johnstone Flood and coastal Risk manager at the Environment Agency commented: “We are really pleased to receive planning permission for the Exmouth tidal defence scheme. We listened to feedback from residents and have moved the Royal Avenue wall closer to the estuary and adjusted the position of a flood gate at the sailing club. We’ve designed a scheme that reduces tidal flood risk for many in Exmouth from a 4% chance to 0.5% chance in any given year.

With planning approval in place we’re looking forward to starting work in spring and reducing the flood risk to Exmouth as soon as possible. We are scheduling our work to avoid disruption to winter birds on the estuary and the summer holidays on the seafront”.

Cllr Tom Wright, East Devon District Council’s portfolio holder for the environment emphasised his approval saying:

“I’m delighted to see planning permission approved for this important scheme to protect homes from flooding in Exmouth, following the overwhelmingly positive response to the public exhibition last Autumn. There’s still a lot of hard work ahead to start construction in the Spring and I’m confident that the Environment Agency, Team Van Oord and East Devon will continue to work with the local community to get this protection in place whilst doing all we can to minimise disruption to residents, businesses and visitors.”

Outline Planning Permission was granted for proposed road alignments and flood defence gates at the Alexandra Terrace Junction with the Esplanade and secondary defence wall in front of Morton Crescent. The Environment Agency is currently consulting with residents and relevant stakeholders to develop solutions for these areas. 

Rob Butler, Environment Agency Project Manager, said “We have been developing a new solution for the sea wall to the front of Morton Crescent and will submit a full planning application for this area in the spring, following with an application for the junction at Alexandra Terrace by the summer”.

Construction is expected to be complete by 2021.

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