WEARSIDERS are being asked to have their say on the future of the area’s coast.
A six-week consultation started today, as council bosses prepare to update the Whitburn Bay to Ryhope Coast Protection Strategy Study, which was written in 2001.
The review will cover six-and-a-half miles of coastline from Souter Point, Whitburn, to Pincushion, Ryhope, and include the Port of Sunderland.
Among the issues being considered in the study, commissioned by the Environment Agency, is the level of coastal erosion and tidal flood risk to the area over the next 100 years.
From this, a preferred coastal management strategy will be decided, and a Strategy Implementation Plan produced.
Councillor James Blackburn, portfolio holder for city services at Sunderland City Council, said: “As a city with such a long coastline and riverfront, this is a very important piece of work.
“Consultation is a key part of the development of the strategy. The general public are invited to have their say and submit comments on the draft document before it is finalised.”
A strategy document has been drafted and states the need to consider additional flood defences at South Bents and Seaburn, which could cost about £1million.
While some of that money could be raised by accessing the Government’s Flood Defence Grant in Aid fund, the strategy suggests local contributions would be needed.
The Hendon Foreshore Barrier also needs to be refurbished and would cost a similar amount.
The area includes substantial Northumbrian Water assets, and the report says funding would predominantly “need to be provided by those with legal or commercial interests in the coastal defence remaining sound” rather than government grants.
People can see the draft document from today by visiting www.sunderland.gov.uk/coastal-strategy.
A hard copy of the document is available to view by contacting Joe Rice at Jack Crawford House, Commercial Road, Sunderland, SR2 8QR or by calling 561 1287.