Large boats have been spotted close to the beach along the west Dorset coast.

As part of the multi-million pound flood defence scheme currently underway at West Bay, they have been lining up along West Beach to deliver stone from Scotland.

These have also been sighted at Burton Bradstock.

The stones are being offloaded on to the beach as part of the construction of a new rock groyne.

The Environment Agency has teamed up with what was West Dorset District Council to undertake coastal defence work, known as the West Bay Coastal Improvement (WBCI) scheme, to provide coastal flood protection to the resort.

The major project means the Esplanade has been closed off and it will not reopen until July 5. The schedule of work is as follows

  • March – June 2019, West Beach – building of a new, low wall at the back of the Esplanade
  • April- June 109, East Beach – installation of a buried solid rock core
  • April- June, 2019 - West Beach – construction of a new rock groyne
  • May-June 2019, West Beach – importing extra beach shingle

Improvements to the River Brit bank along Parkdean Holiday Park have been designed and, once funding has been agreed, will take place over the winter period (November 2019 – February 2020).

The contractor's main site compound is at the car park behind East Beach. A secondary compound is located at West Beach and there will be restricted areas at both beaches during construction. These will be signposted.

West Bay’s beach defences protect 148 residential properties and 112 commercial properties, along with caravans at Parkdean Holiday Park.

Each winter, stormy seas damage East Beach, and waves over-topping the Esplanade at West Beach caused significant flooding of properties and utilities in 2014.

The WBCI scheme aims to prevent this from happening again by building a more robust defence.

Drop-in sessions

Local residents, business owners and visitors can find out more information and ask questinos about the work at a series of drop-in sessions at the Salt House from 1.30pm-4.30pm on the following dates:

  • Thursday, May 16
  • Thursday, May 30
  • Thursday, June 13
  • Thursday, June 27

Work is also taking place at the motorcycle parking area outside the George Hotel in West Bay, resulting in the concrete beds being demolished and replaced with new surfacing and bespoke, artist-designed seating, which will follow in the coming weeks.

Alternative motorcycle parking is being provided on East Pier during bank holidays and weekends only.