Following on from 20 months of work, a celebration was held to mark the completion of a £16 million (US$20 million) scheme on the UK's North Yorkshire coast to stabilise the cliff between Scarborough Spa and the Esplanade on Scarborough's South Cliff.
The complex engineering scheme, project managed by Royal HaskoningDHV, and carried out by contractor, Balfour Beatty, on behalf of Scarborough Borough Council, has resulted in the "protection of 380 homes and 38 key businesses with a combined value of £114 million".
Representatives of the organisations involved in the funding and implementation of the scheme joined people from the local South Cliff community for a tour of the completed site before the Mayor of the Borough of Scarborough, councillor Hazel Lynskey, unveiled a display board to mark the monumental achievements the scheme has achieved.
Work on the scheme started at the end of May 2018 and took 20 months to complete, during which time 4,585 soil reinforcement nails have been drilled into the cliff, 225 steel piles installed, 3,600t of topsoil placed, 1,000t of tarmac used for footpaths and 11 community causes have been supported by Balfour Beatty.
Councillor Janet Jefferson, cabinet member for Scarborough Borough Council, said: "This critical scheme has been an enormous undertaking from concept to completion. I am very proud of what has been achieved to safeguard the future of the cliff and the homes, businesses, infrastructure and much-admired heritage assets that rely on its stability.
"The scheme's success has been down to the collective efforts of everyone involved, including the local community who have been very supportive and patient during the works. Today we all celebrate the success the partnership has delivered."
A Defra grant of £11.6m, administered by the Environment Agency, has made up the bulk of the funding for the scheme with the difference being made up by contributions from Scarborough Borough Council and North Yorkshire County Council.
The work took place on the Yorkshire coast to stabilise the cliff between Scarborough Spa and the Esplanade on Scarborough's South Cliff
Emma Howard Boyd, chair of the Environment Agency, said: "As we have seen this month, flooding causes devastation to people's lives and businesses. Climate change means extreme weather events like this are more likely in the future, so it's been great to work with Scarborough Borough Council, as well as the contractors, on this unique project to help protect more than 400 homes and businesses.
"This forms part of the £650 million being invested with partners across Yorkshire in flood and coastal erosion risk management to better protect 67,000 homes."
The scheme, which has seen Balfour Beatty's team work in all weathers and at all angles of the cliff has included piling along the rear of the Scarborough Spa complex with almost horizontal drainage to address the deep-seated failure of the cliff. The slope has also been re-graded to address further problems with instability.
Stephen Semple, Balfour Beatty area director for North and Midlands, said: "The completion of this scheme marks a significant milestone for our integrated delivery team who have utilised their expertise to deliver the complex engineering works required to stabilise the Scarborough Spa cliff.
"We are delighted that our works will help to protect 380 homes and 38 businesses within the South Cliff community."
Paul Knight, Royal HaskoningDHV project manager for the Scarborough Spa Slope Stabilisation Scheme, said: "Royal HaskoningDHV is proud to have been able to support Scarborough Borough Council to deliver this scheme. The collaborative efforts of the whole team have enabled us to deliver a technically complex and challenging scheme, which has achieved the aims of protecting and stabilising this historic coastal slope and the properties and infrastructure which were at risk.
"The support and cooperation of residents and businesses affected by these works has been fantastic throughout the whole project and it was fantastic to be able to reopen the newly refurbished and improved walkways for the community to enjoy."
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