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Millions needed to prevent flooding in Shoreham
Millions of pounds need to be spent improving Shoreham’s flood defences to prevent it from becoming Shoreham-under-Sea.
The Environment Agency said drastic action needs to be taken to prevent the town from being flooded every year because of rising sea levels.
It warned if nothing is done then homes and businesses between the River Adur and High Street face annual water damage and that hundreds of previously safe properties would be at risk.
Officials are proposing to spend £5 million on flood defences on the east bank of the river.
Among the options are the building of a wall that would be a metre higher than the current defences between Shoreham footbridge and Norfolk Road bridge and raising the defences between the railway viaduct and the A27 by 1.5 metres.
A stretch of the A283 could also be raised by up to two metres.
A further £10 million of work is already planned for the west bank, including the building of a new wall from the coast to Sussex Wharf, around Emerald Quay and from the Waterside Inn to the houseboat embankment.
A new embankment will be built at Adur Recreation Ground and the eastern boundary of Shoreham Airport to protect them from the river.
The Environment Agency admitted the east bank proposals could result in some residents losing their sea views.
Andrew Gilham, the Environment Agency’s flood and coastal risk manager, said: “Most sea views will not be adversely affected but it is about the balance between that and being safe in your bed at night.
“With our climate changing and sea levels rising, the risks and the number of people affected are likely to increase.
“We cannot prevent all flooding and erosion but we believe what we are proposing is the best way to manage these risks to Shoreham in the future.”
Neil Parkin, the leader of Adur District Council, said he was looking forward to seeing the plans after recognising something needed to be done.
He said: “They have got to do something which is why we are putting money towards it.
“A lot of Shoreham is at risk and the work has to be done.
“If you want a sea view you have to think long and hard about it – you don’t want to only have a sea view because your house is underwater.”
An exhibition of the different options is being held at Adur Civic Centre in Ham Road, Shoreham, tomorrow (June 8) from 9am to 5pm and at Shoreham Food and Drink Festival at Coronation Green on Saturday, June 9 from 9am to 4pm and on Sunday, June 10 from 9am to 1pm.