MORE than 1,700 homes will be assured better flood protection after a £6.3m funding boost.
Havant Borough Council has been awarded the huge grant from the Environment Agency to protect low-lying homes at Eastoke Point and the southern coastline of Hayling Island.
The work is due to start in May.
A total of £5m has been awarded for the construction of a 650m revetment – a collection of rocks to absorb energy from waves.
This will stretch eastwards from Nutbourne Road and Bosmere Road, around Sandy Point nature reserve, to join the existing revetment at Eastoke Point.
And the level of the beach in front of the revetment will be raised using more than 35,000 tonnes of imported beach material.
Four dilapidated timber groynes will be replaced with rock ones.
A concrete wall at the back of the promenade will be refurbished.
A further £1.3m has been awarded to help continue the council’s successful flood protection scheme for the rest of the coastline.
This involves recycling the existing beach material and building it up in vulnerable areas.
Councillor John Smith, who lives in Eastoke, said: ‘The coastal defence scheme demonstrates just how committed Havant Borough Council is when it comes to protecting the residents of South Hayling.
‘Combining the new defences with the beach management plan and annual recycling operations will provide a much better standard of protection against flooding and erosion for the local community.’
The scheme by the Eastern Solent Coastal Partnership – a partnership of authorities in Havant, Portsmouth, Fareham and Gosport – has taken two years to develop.
As well as protecting homes, the work will protect rare wildlife habitats at Sandy Point Nature Reserve.
Councillor David Guest, who heads coastal defences, said: ‘Delivering the new sea defences will not only improve the standard of protection against coastal flooding and erosion but will also secure a safer standard of living for the community here for many years to come.’