Last update: 09 February 2008

Project questions or comments?  Please e-mail Stuart Terry


 Daily Diary

 Harbour Dredging





 Aboard a Dredger




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Swanage Beach

Beach replenishment work started at Swanage on Tuesday, 22nd November and was completed on Friday, 9th December after which the pipeline was moved to Poole. 

Swanage statistics

loads m3 metric tonnes 1 tons

Total pumped ashore

76 128,219 192,329 189,291

Swanage was due to receive 90,000m3 of new sand; the 128,219m3 recorded as pumped ashore allows for various factors [more].

The aim of the new beach is to protect Swanage from coastal erosion but it will also improve the amenity for all residents and visitors.  Leaving Swanage beach untouched could lead to damage to local properties and roads over the next 50 years amounting to over 35 million. 

Poole Harbour is being dredged to provide the sand needed for the scheme.  The 750m long pipeline used for pumping the sand was assembled in Newhaven Harbour in Sussex and towed to Swanage. 

As well as depositing new sand the project here also involves building new timber groynes to replace the old ones, and to help reduce longshore drift, the main cause of long-term erosion of the beach.  The old groynes have been in place for 75 years but are now beyond repair.

New Groynes

Groyne construction has been contracted to Dean and Dyball.   Dean & Dyball, Civil Engineers

After detailed consideration of a range of different coast protection measures, timber groynes were selected as they take up less space on the beach and there will be little change to the visual appearance of the shoreline.   Timber groynes are also cost effective, historically proven to work here at Swanage and there is a general preference for them expressed by the public and landowners through the pre-scheme consultations.    

We have 18 timber groynes to replace, and we intend to complete the work up to Burlington Chine by Easter.  The groynes further north will be completed by the end of May.  Achieving the programme will inevitably depend on the weather and the ground conditions that we encounter, but the whole team will be working hard to complete the project on time. 

All the old groynes to the north of the Outfall Jetty will be removed.  The two groynes to the south of the Outfall Jetty do not need to be replaced.  About 10% of the timber will be re-used in the scheme.  Some of the rest of the timber will be taken away and re-milled for use elsewhere.  Any timber that cannot be recycled will be disposed of in a licensed disposal site.

We are completing the work during winter to avoid disruption to the tourist season.  This means that we will have to deal with winter weather as well as difficult tidal conditions at Swanage.  

To take best advantage of the lowest tides, we are having to do some of the work very early in the morning and quite late at night.  Work on installing groynes will be noisy at times.  We apologise but this is unavoidable.


More Swanage Photos

Further information

  • Mike Goater

    Purbeck District Council

    Worgret Road 


    Dorset BH20 4PP

    Tel: 01929 557271

more Swanage photos ...

1 The Crown Estate apply a factor of 1.5 to convert cubic metres of sand to metric tonnes (more) and 1 metric tonne = 0.984206528 long (British) ton To top of page

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