THE final rock has been placed in a £17m coastal protection scheme.
As some of the worst September storms in years hit our shores, the last 10-tonne rock was lifted into place to mark the completion of the new beach and sea defence project at Selsey in West Sussex.
The engineering programme, the first privately-funded project of its kind and size in the UK, has been undertaken and funded by the holiday village Bunn Leisure.
The six-month project involved the sea transportation and positioning of massive granite rocks, sand, and shingle.
It is hoped it will create a bigger and sandier beach for visitors to enjoy.
Two off-shore rock breakwaters, each with a two-acre footprint, were built on the seabed to help defend the land from flooding.
Stretching 180 metres out from the original beach line at either end of the holiday park, the breakwaters should, in time, blend into the seascape and act as a haven for birds and sea life.
In the last stage of the works, the beach was enlarged with 500,000 tonnes of sand and shingle pumped from a dredger onto the existing beach.
Bunn Leisure owner John Bunn, who was responsible for the project, said: ‘Many have witnessed the serious erosion of our Selsey coastline in recent years due to lack of cohesive action and investment, and the devastation caused by the storm in March 2008.
‘I am delighted to have not only protected my business, but also one of our greatest assets – this amazing beach – for today’s holidaymakers and for those of tomorrow.’