Yaverland Coastal Defence Scheme Information Page

Closes 29 Sep 2028

Opened 27 Jan 2022


Welcome to the Yaverland Coastal Defence Scheme Information Page.

The Environment Agency have created this page to provide easy access to information on the Yaverland project, one of four priority coastal defence projects on the Isle of Wight. The Environment Agency will be updating this site as the project progresses, so please keep checking for what’s new.

If you would like to be added to our mailing list to receive updates on this project or any other of the Isle of Wight coastal defence projects, please email us and let us know which projects you are interested in. 

For information about other coastal defence projects on the Isle of Wight see here.

Latest Update 6 June 2022

We will be seeking public opinion as the project progresses and to mark the start of that process, we have launched an online questionnaire. Your feedback will help inform the project as it moves forward.

We would love to hear your views on what you most value about the coastal frontage between Yaverland and Sandown, any concerns you have or ideas for improvement that we could consider as we develop our options.

Please complete our online questionnaire by 31 August 2022. The questionnaire can be found here.

You can download a copy of our first newsletter here.


The Environment Agency in partnership with the Isle of Wight Council, with expert support from JBA Consulting and VolkerStevin, is exploring a sustainable future for the coastal frontage between Yaverland and Sandown on the south-east coast of the Isle of Wight. The Environment Agency are focusing on the area between Yaverland car park and the junction of Crescent Road and Culver Parade, shown in blue on the map below.

Map showing the area we are focusing on between Yaverland car park and the junction of Crescent Road and Culver Parade, shown in blue on the map.

The Sandown Bay coastal frontage is a popular tourist and amenity area with its long sandy beach, esplanade and attractions. This project aims to address the flood risk and coastal erosion challenges facing this stretch of coastline.

This work aims to enhance the seafront for future generations and assist regeneration, whilst reducing flood risk to the community and preserving the area’s tourism and heritage value. Additionally, the project will explore longer term flood and erosion risk management options and make recommendations for a sustainable coastline for future generations.

More Information

Coastlines are dynamic environments and change is a common occurrence. However, the Environment Agency need to manage the risks that this brings in terms of sea flooding and coastal erosion. The existing sea wall reduces the risk of sea flooding to the low lying land in Sandown and Yaverland. As sea levels rise due to climate change and the condition of the sea wall deteriorates with time, the risk of flood and coastal erosion to properties, road and rail infrastructure and low-lying land in the area and along the Yaverland coastline will increase. This will also impact upon the environmental habitats in the area and the species they support.
The Environment Agency want to work alongside relevant stakeholders, especially the local community, to explore the challenges and opportunities facing the future of this coastline.

More Information

The existing sea wall embankment is occasionally overtopped by waves during stormy conditions, causing localised flooding. This can be seen in the photos below, taken in 2015.
Overtopping waves in Yaverland in 2015Overtopping waves in Yaverland in 2015
The condition of the sea wall and groynes between Yaverland car park and Sandown (Culver Parade) varies. Some sections of the sea wall are in a very good condition, and are expected to offer sufficient protection for many years to come. Other sections are in need of repair. The groynes may be near the end of their useful life and in need of significant repair or replacement. The photos below show some of the deteriorating structures.
Photo showing Yaverland seawallPhoto showing Yaverland timber groyne
If the Environment Agency take no action, these poorer sections are at risk of failure, which would lead to a breach in the sea wall and flooding of the low lying land including properties and infrastructure in Yaverland and Sandown bordering the Eastern Yar valley. The map below shows in red the section of sea wall that the Environment Agency is looking to refurbish. The area in blue is land that would have a 0.5% or greater annual probability of sea flooding if the wall was not in place.  
Map showing the predicted 0.5% annual probability tidal flood event with no defences in place.
The predicted 0.5% annual probability tidal flood event with no defences in place

More Information

On behalf of the UK government, the Environment Agency prioritise and allocate funding to flood and coastal erosion risk management schemes using a partnership funding approach. Securing national funding is dependent on the scale of benefits and outcomes delivered by a scheme and, if required, additional funding contributions may be required from other sources such as local levy (raised by the Regional Flood and Coastal Committees), private or public organisations, the local community or developers. Anyone who benefits from a scheme may be asked to contribute to its funding.  The Isle of Wight Council is also making a funding contribution to the current schemes.
More information on how partnership funding works can be found here
Current estimates suggest that a scheme to refurbish the sea defence structures between Yaverland and Sandown would be eligible for just under £5 million of government Flood and Coastal Erosion Risk Management Grant in Aid funding. Early, high level cost estimates indicate that the cost of a scheme would be in excess of this, and that several million pounds would need to be found, or savings made, to enable it to go ahead. Actual partnership funding requirements are very much dependent upon further investigation to confirm the required costs but we are already considering other potential sources of funding to supplement available government funding.

More Information

No decisions have yet been made about how best to address the flood and erosion risks in this area. Since autumn 2020 we have been gathering information and putting a case together for public investment in flood and coastal risk management infrastructure improvements between Yaverland and Sandown. The Environment Agency have done this by submitting a high level business case (a ‘Strategic Outline Case’) to its internal assurance group. Approval was received in summer 2021, which justifies funding for the next stage of business case development. This is the ‘Outline Business Case’ stage, which began in winter 2021. The 'Outline Business Case' will develop more detailed options for improving the defences, and the Environment Agency will undertake flood modelling and other technical assessments and investigations to help us make informed decisions about what the Environment Agency could do.

More Information

The project is still in its early stages and the Environment Agency have identified a wide range of options to reduce the existing risk of flooding and coastal erosion. The Environment Agency will however, need your thoughts and ideas to supplement its technical assessments, to develop these options further. This will take time, but the Environment Agency will increase its engagement activities in the coming months as it introduces the project, shares its initial findings, and gathers views on what is valued about the coastline as well as any concerns about its future. Throughout this project there will be numerous opportunities for you to feed into its development and the Environment Agency would encourage you to do so. 

Frequently asked questions can be viewed here.

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Get in touch

Thank you for visiting our project page.

Please contact us:

By email: IOW_FDschemes@environment-agency.gov.uk

By post: Environment Agency, Romsey Office, Canal Walk, Romsey, SO51 8DU

By phone: 03708 506 506


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