Weston Shore is Southampton’s only publicly accessible natural coastline. With areas of shingle beach and mudflats, this provides a habitat for wildlife and point of interest for visitors engaging in recreation and leisure activities.
The most western extent of the recreation ground was slowly being eroded by waves within Southampton Water. Over the last few years, the number of storms had increased the rate of erosion to a point where the popular shared use foot and cycle path connecting Victoria Road to Weston Recreation Ground was at risk of collapsing.
What have we done?
During the summer of 2022, Southampton City Council worked in partnership with Balfour Beatty Living Places utilising the SCAPE Civil Engineering and Construction Framework to deliver a 140 metre length of rock armour revetment. Rock armour works by breaking up the energy of waves as they hit the beach, therefore preventing further breakup of the already weakened cliff face.
Rock armour was selected as this is the most durable and cost-effective method for reducing erosion at this location. The revetment consists of over 3,000 tonnes of rock placed over a protective geotextile matting. The shape and texture help the rock to interlock and create a stable structure, capable of withstanding waves today, and in future as sea level rises.
The scheme completed in October 2022 will provide better protection to the site for the next 50 years, preventing the loss of the footpath. It will also ensure that gas and sewage infrastructure is safe and lower the risk of a former landfill site being exposed.
Enhancing the environment
Weston Shore carries several important environmental designations due to the unique habitat. To enhance this, the coastal defence has included enhanced planting on the cliff line, which will establish in Spring 2023. In addition, rock pools have been drilled into the lowest rocks to give marine life a chance to thrive.
How was the scheme being funded?
The scheme was funded through a combination of Southampton City Council Community Infrastructure Levy and Environment Agency Local Levy.
For further information on this scheme, please contact email@example.com.
Find out more about Weston Shore.