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Coastal Monitoring

The Southern Coastal Group (SCG)


Cllr Mrs M Penfold MBE, West Dorset District Council


Cllr Jackie Branson, Havant Borough Council


Technical assistance provided to Councillors by

Mr Neil Watson (Environment Agency) and

Dr Samantha Cope (SCOPAC Research Chair)





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2018-2020 Minor projects: Call for proposals

Current Research

SurgeWatch: a user-friendly database of coastal flooding for the UK

SCOPAC Contaminated Land Study

Scanning of historical aerial photography

Beach response in front of structures in open coast

Poole Bay Nearshore Replenishment Trial

Reducing regional flood and erosion risk from wave action on the Channel Coast

Maintenance of coastal structures - Phase 1: Timber groynes

Completed Research

Bradbury’s Bursary: Lauren Burt (2016) and Emma Harris (2017)

SCOPAC Sediment Transport Study update 2012

Offshore to onshore transport across distinct landforms at Church Norton Spit: Minor Funds Contribution 2015-2016

Coastal sediment budget project: Minor Funds Contribution 2013-2016

Seabed Mapping Selsey to Eastoke: Minor Funds Contribution 2013-2015

Sediment Tracer Study Phase II: Minor Funds Contribution 2011-2013

Non-standard Rock Groynes: Minor Funds Contribution 2011-2013

Sediment Tracer Study Phase I: Minor Funds Contribution 2010-2011

ACCESS Project 2011

Extreme Wave Conditions within the SCOPAC region 2008-2010

Strategic Regional Coastal Monitoring

RESPONSE European Project 2006-2009

RESPONSE European Project Maps

SCOPAC Sediment Transport Bibliographic Database (v6, 2012)

SCOPAC Sediment Transport Study 2004

Evolution of the Solent River animation

Evolution of Lyme Bay animation

Preparing for the Impacts of Climate Change 2001

SCOPAC contributed £15,000 towards the monitoring of a trial which aims to place sand on the seabed and allow natural processes to push it onshore to replenish the beaches in Poole Bay. 

Poole Harbour Commissioners provided the sand from maintenance dredging of Poole Harbour entrance, thereby recycling the sand back into the system, rather than dumping it offshore.

Poole Borough Council £15,000 contribution (2014-2017)

Poole Bay Nearshore Replenishment Trial

Click to view full size image

The Sand Motor (or Sand Engine) concept has been widely used in the Netherlands since the 1990's given that it is cheaper and less intrusive compared with traditional beach renourishment approaches (The Sand Engine: a solution for vulnerable deltas in the 21st Century? Coastal Dynamics 2013). The works at Poole Bay are of national importance given the Sand Motor concept has never been trialled on beaches in the United Kingdom.

The Marine Management Organisation (MMO) granted the licence to allow the placing of sand in the sea. The works were undertaken between the 9th and 14th February 2015, when 30,000m³ of sand was placed on the sea bed approximately 450m offshore at Canford Cliffs Chine (Poole). Seven survey sets have been collected by the Channel Coast Observatory (CCO) since the material was placed on the sea bed. Each set consists of a topographic survey of the beach and a bathymetric survey of the sea bed. In addition, fluorescent tracer studies were undertaken to establish a link between the sediment deposited on the sea bed and the beach.

An Acoustic Doppler Current Profiler (ADCP) is still in position, which measures the speed, direction and turbidity of water currents using sound waves. With the ADCP installed, any turbidity difference between the trial and conventional beach recharge can be assessed.

The final report has been prepared by the CCO, and a ‘lessons learned’ leaflet has also been produced by the steering group for practitioners and regulators.

For more information see

Sandbanks beach, Poole Bay

Project Leaflet, July 2015 (PDF, 2Mb)

Project leaflet July 2015 describing the project and including preliminary observations (PDF, 2Mb)