It’s the end of the Tar­mac beach

Face of Porth­cawl’s town beach is set to change for­ever as £3m sea de­fence scheme pre­pares to get un­der­way:

Glamorgan Gazette - - Front Page - ABBY BOLTER abby.bolter@waleson­line.co.uk

THE long-planned re­place­ment of a beach which is also a vi­tal sea de­fence is set to go ahead after the Welsh Gov­ern­ment an­nounced more than £2m of fund­ing for Porth­cawl.

The cash will help pay for the £3m re­vamp of the Town Beach, which is also known as the Tar­mac or con­crete beach.

In an an­nounce­ment made on Tues­day, the Welsh Gov­ern­ment said the ex­ist­ing sea de­fences were con­structed in 1984 and a re­cent in­spec­tion found the struc­ture to be in a de­te­ri­o­rat­ing con­di­tion and com­ing to the end of its vi­able life.

The cur­rent de­fences pro­tect sev­eral mil­lion pounds worth of homes and com­mer­cial prop­er­ties along the Es­planade, in­clud­ing the Grand Pavilion.

The Gov­ern­ment said that when com­plete the strength­ened de­fences will re­duce the risk of flood­ing and ero­sion from the sea to 260 prop­er­ties.

Brid­gend coun­cil will pay the dif­fer­ence for the scheme, which will cost a to­tal of £3,065,528.

The £2,299,146 an­nounced on Tues­day will en­able works to be car­ried to im­prove the de­fences, which will in­clude:

The par­tial de­mo­li­tion of the ex­ist­ing struc­ture; and,

Re­place­ment of the ex­ist­ing as­phalt with a new ter­raced struc­ture which will be sur­faced in a sand colour in line with the re­sponses from the pub­lic con­sul­ta­tion.

Cab­i­net Sec­re­tary for En­vi­ron­ment and Ru­ral Af­fairs, Les­ley Grif­fiths, said: “I am pleased to be able to pro­vide this vi­tal fund­ing to strengthen sea de­fences in Porth­cawl, which will pro­vide re­as­sur­ance to those who live and work in or visit this pop­u­lar tourist des­ti­na­tion.

“We have in­vested un­prece­dented lev­els of fund­ing in re­cent years and over the life­time of this Gov­ern­ment we will be in­vest­ing over £144m cap­i­tal fund­ing in flood and coastal ero­sion risk man­age­ment schemes around Wales.”

Coun Richard Young, Brid­gend coun­cil’s cab­i­net mem­ber for com­mu­ni­ties, said: “This sig­nifi- cant in­vest­ment from the Welsh As­sem­bly is ex­cel­lent news for Porth­cawl and will en­able Brid­gend County Bor­ough Coun­cil to con­tinue to pro­tect the town cen­tre and seafront area from flood­ing while also of­fer­ing a more vis­ually pleas­ing ‘ter­raced’ de­sign for the sea de­fences.

“The con­tract for the work is cur­rently be­ing fi­nalised and I am look­ing for­ward to be­ing able to re­veal more de­tails about the project very soon.”

The con­crete beach un­der­went a ma­jor up­grade in 2005 at a cost of al­most £500,000.

A new 12-inch layer of as­phalt had to be laid after dam­age the pre­vi­ous winter made ur­gent re­pairs nec­es­sary.

Con­sul­ta­tion on the new de­sign be­gan in 2013.

PETER BOLTER

Cash has been made avail­able by the Welsh Gov­ern­ment to re­place the Tar­mac beach in Porth­cawl

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