Sea defence plans to save 168 homes from flooding

By Chris Betteley   |   Reporter   |
Thursday 20th January 2022 12:26 pm
@ChrisABetteley
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LONG-AWAITED improvements to Aberaeron’s sea defences, which could save scores of homes from flooding over the next century, have moved a step closer as Ceredigion council ready a full application for the multi-million pound scheme.

The council’s lead officer Rhodri Llwyd is applying for planning permission to develop the Aberaeron Coastal Defence Scheme, which documents said will include the construction of a rock breakwater extending out from North Pier, refurbishment and re-building of pier head of South Pier, construction of flood walls, construction of flood gate at Pwll Cam inner harbour and improvements to the existing defences on South Beach.

The application follows the granting of a marine licence - applied for last July - from Natural Resources Wales to carry out the work.

Work is slated to begin in the spring this year if all permissions and consents are granted.

The scheme, which has been mooted for several years, was delayed after an investigation of initial plans “identified additional work requiring further flood modelling requirements.”

The initial hope was for work to begin in 2020.

Storms in December 2013, January 2014 and October 2017 led to the closure of Quay Parade and serious overtopping of the current defences within the harbour and South Beach, and Ceredigion council said it was “committed to protecting the town” after launching a consultation two years ago on the plans in a bid to save harbour-side properties from flooding.

“The Welsh Government provided funding to design a scheme that will prevent the surrounding area suffering from future storms,” Cllr Dafydd Edwards, Cabinet member with responsibility for highways and environmental services said on the launch of a consultation.

“It is predicted that 168 properties will be at risk of flooding by 2111 if nothing is done.

“The main aims are to protect the coastline from rising sea levels and storms; to protect people and property from flooding and to reassure residents and businesses that measures are in place to prevent flooding and coastal erosion.”

Some preliminary and remedial work on a harbour coast defence scheme was started in early 2019 in Aberaeron with local concern that parts of the harbour area, including the historic South Pier, needed significant repair.

A first tranche of sea defences for Aberaeron, built at a cost of £5.35m, were completed in 2009.

The council said the “main aims” of the scheme are to “protect the coastline from rising sea levels and storms; to protect people and property from flooding and to reassure residents and businesses that measures are in place to prevent flooding and coastal erosion.”

Representations on the plans to be submitted by Ceredigion council, which documents say will include affecting one public right of way as part of the scheme, can be made until 3 February and can be found on Ceredigion County Council’s website.

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