Southsea Coastal Defence Scheme receives full marks, plus three additional points, in recent CCS audit

The Southsea Coastal Defence Scheme has received full marks, plus three additional points for innovation and best practice, in a recent Considerate Constructors Scheme audit. The Considerate Constructors Scheme (CCS) seeks to improve the image of the construction industry by striving to promote and achieve high standards under its Code of Considerate Practice.

Receiving the full 15 marks in each of the three key areas is a reflection of the team’s efforts to implement effective processes and procedures to address the community, environment and workforce needs. The Southsea Coastal Defence Scheme received an additional point for an ongoing innovation, for the team’s use of a battery powered vacuum lifter to move pre-cast units.

The first best practice point was awarded for its support in GreenTheUK’s Solent oyster restoration project. The team is working on the Southsea coastal defences which are directly on The Solent where native oysters disappeared years ago due to overfishing in the area. Over the next five years GreenTheUK aim to restore five million oysters, using both broodstock cages and seabed restoration, so that a healthy, self-sustaining oyster population is present. Successful restoration of the oysters will come with many local environmental benefits including improving the water quality and increasing biodiversity.

The team were also awarded a best practice point for going above and beyond for a local restaurant, The Briny. The Briny restaurant is located along the promenade that the team are building new sea defences around/in front of. The restaurant usually has tables outside its building so customers can dine with a sea view, however this outside space was lost during construction work. The team applied for temporary planning permission to construct a large decking area on the other side of the Briny to give them an alternative dining area. The team also created large windows in the hoardings, all the way along the promenade where the restaurant is located, so that diners inside can have a sea view and watch the work being carried out. The team worked with the Briny to design branded graphics which are displayed along the hoardings.

Work on the scheme is progressing well as construction has started on frontage five (Pyramids to Speakers’ Corner), and the team has been installing T-wall units which will separate the promenade from the road. The wall is part of the secondary sea defence, the primary sea defence being the beach which will be made larger as part of the scheme. Installation of the pre-cast step units on frontage five continues, these steps will lead from the promenade onto the beach. A total of 141 pre-cast steps will be installed along the edge of the promenade.

Rock works have begun on frontage three, with the use of a long reach excavator the team will be moving some of the rocks from its stockpile into place, next to the Blue Reef Aquarium. This small section of frontage three (Southsea Common) is being built now so that frontage four, at Southsea Castle, can be opened later this year with full access.

All the coastal engineering has been completed on frontage four (Blue Reef Aquarium to the Pyramids) meaning the sea defences in this section are now fully functional, allowing the final touches to be installed. The first installation of new lighting bollards around the Southsea Castle promenade area has also been completed (more to follow).