Waveney shoreline management plan adopted

Plans for the future management of the north Suffolk coast were approved by councillors last night.

Members of Waveney District Council's cabinet met on Wednesday to formally adopt the county's Shoreline Management Plan (SMP), which covers the stretch of coast between Lowestoft Ness and Felixstowe.

The SMP was provisionally approved by the cabinet last November and, following delays, it has since been approved by the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra), signed off by the Environment Agency, and adopted by Suffolk Coastal District Council last week.

As previously reported by The Journal, there is concern at Covehithe over the SMP's recommendation that a policy of 'no active intervention' is applied for the next century – effectively meaning that within 30 to 40 years the entire hamlet, including homes, an historic church and important conservation areas, will be lost.

Wrentham councillor Martin Parsons said: 'Benacre is losing 17 acres of land every year and with the no active intervention policy this is in effect saying we will stop the landowner defending the coast. This is a huge ethical issue.'

Paul Patterson, Waveney's senior coastal engineer, responded: 'About 18 months ago there was a meeting requested from the Benacre Estate, but no submission of taking up this offer – so if they want to come to talk to officers we can help in this matter.'

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