Devon Maritime Forum to discuss coastal change


Posted on: 3 December 2015

Coastal change will be the focus of the Devon Maritime Forum’s meeting next week.

Entitled ‘Understanding, Managing and Coping with Coastal Change’, the meeting at Langstone Cliff Hotel in Dawlish on Tuesday 8 December, will examine how and where our coast is changing, as well as assessing current predictions for future change.

Speakers from Plymouth University, the National Trust, and Environment Agency, all of whom work at the forefront of coastal change research, management, policy and planning, will address the issue, including flood and coastal risk management at Dawlish Warren, and the response and recovery along the south west coast from the extreme 2013/14 winter storms.

The meeting will feature presentations from a range of experts working on the front line of coastal change, managing and mitigating its effects, and dealing with the impacts of rising sea-levels and extreme storms. They will explore the merits of both hard and soft engineering solutions as well as evaluating the practicalities and politics of not actively intervening. A number of innovative new approaches to coastal management will also be showcased.

Professor Ed Maltby, Chairman of the Devon Maritime Forum, said: “With world leaders gathering in Paris at the United Nations Climate Change conference, the issue has never been higher on the political or media agenda. Evidence suggests that the rate at which coastal change takes place will significantly increase as we move further into the 21st century. Precisely how and where increased rates of erosion, and deposition, will impact on our coastline remains to be determined but the coast of Devon and the wider south west peninsula will change and will look different to our children and grandchildren. We need, therefore, to plan for these changes and manage our coastline in a way that meets the needs of both our coastal communities and the coastal environment.”

The Chair of the Peninsula Rail Task Force, Councillor Andrew Leadbetter, will be among the guest speakers at the meeting. He will set out the Task Force’s ambitions to get the region’s rail network ‘back on track’ following the devastating disruption of recent winter storms. The meeting will also hear about the group’s three-point-plan for greater rail resilience, connectivity and capacity, as well as the compelling economic and social rationale for investment, and how the long-term resilience of the coastal mainline at Dawlish remains a top priority.

For more information, the full meeting programme and registration details, go to

Posted in: DCC Homepage | Environment