Amazing ‘behind the scenes’ pictures of the construction of Littlehampton’s Sea Defences.

A huge thanks to Eric Smethurst, VolkerStevin’s Scheme Liaison Manager for providing us with these amazing behind the scenes pictures of the construction of Littlehampton’s Sea Defences.

Sit back, and enjoy the amazing views… (taken from the bucket of the Crane!)

Don’t forget to click on the pictures to see them full size.

Littlehampton Sea Defences

Littlehampton Sea DefencesLittlehampton

Littlehampton harbourLittlehampon sea defencesLittlehampton Sea DefencesEnvironment Agency Flood DefencesLittlehampton flood defencesLittlehampton HarbourLittlehamton sea defence constructionPiling GatePiling Gate pictured above and below

Piling gate

Littlehampton HarbourThanks again to Eric Smethurst, VolkerStevin and Andrew Walker, Environment Agency for kindly providing and allowing us to publish these pictures on the blog.

Eric Smethurst Volker Stevin ManagerEric Smethurst (pictured above) who kindly provided these pictures is the Project Team’s Scheme’s Liaison Manager and can be found in the Visitor Information Centre situated just above the Oyster Pond Boating Lake. If you have any ‘how-to’ questions regarding the construction of the scheme, Eric’s your man. A wealth of knowledge and a veteran of sea defence construction projects.

I have been advised by the Environment Agency that will be providing an update regarding the progress of the scheme early next week, which I’ll publish once available.

Latest Update from the Flood Defence Scheme.

A deafening silence…

Sorry, there’s been no updates on the blog (for a while now)  regarding the Environment Agency and Arun District Council’s joint £15million sea defence and public realm enhancements for Littlehampton.

I’m afraid, despite my repeated requests to the Environment Agency (since prior to Christmas) for updates, so far there has been no official response.

However, Arun District Council’s Councillor’s Paul Dendle, whose Cabinet Member Portfoli includes Engineering – Flood Defences – released this brief and somewhat bizarre statement via Twitter on 20th January 2014.

“unaware of any material delays 2 flood protection works,it was programmed 2 finish before school hols in Jul 14”

Surprising statement given the Environment Agencies previous updates regarding delays.

Furthermore, the Environment Agency’s Project Team last update reported they were now 4 weeks behind with the Pilling Schedule – this was back early December.

I fail to understand how Councillor Dendle can say that there are no material delays. However, in the absence of any other  official statement contradicting his statement, we can only conclude that officially at least, there are now no delays and all is on target to complete in July.

I did ask the Environment Agency to comment on Councillor Dendle’s announcement, but so far there’s been no response.

Previously they did provide a useful Outline of Programme of Works Document, which you can download here Outline draft programme R1_R2.

It provides a useful guide to the works taking place. And as you’d expect, states at the bottom that ‘this project is draft and is subject to change.’

Given the appalling weather, machinery problems, pilling problems, who wouldn’t be surprised that a major project like this one has slipped behind?

I certainly wouldn’t be. I’ve always said at our consultation meetings that the timescales presented were far too ambitious and unachievable for a scheme of this magnitude. More especially when those of us who live and work here understand the horrific weather we regularly have to put up with  in Pier Road.

So why no official update on the scheme’s progress?

Answering questions with deafening silence, is akin to gagging.

DSCF3157Here we are now, pictured above
Pier Road closedHere we were when then back in October 2013 when the road was closed over 3 months ago.

Arun District Council’s Chief Executive reports the Car Park wasn’t dangerous

Arun District Council Car ParkThe above Arun District Car Park surface isn’t Dangerous – reports Arun District Council’s Chief Executive, Nigel Lynn. Neither does Arun District Council undertake Risk Assessments for their Public Car Parks, as they don’t legally have to.

In a written reply to my complaint about the dangerous state of an area in the West Green Car Park, Mr Lynn replies as follows:

“Dear Mr Power,

We have spoken with the car parking team here regarding risk assessment and they have responded as below …

Arun District Council does not have specific risk assessments for specific car parks and it is not a legal requirement. The car parks are patrolled by our contract staff and where there are Health & Safety issues they are reported. The West Green car park was not closed because we considered it a safety issue but because we recognised that the amount of mud and water on the surface would deter people from parking in that area.”

Kind regards,



Arun District Council Car ParkNo risk to safety, according to Arun District Council – only the appearance forced the closure of the Car Park.

No need for risk assessments as Arun isn’t legally obliged to undertake any.

Presumably they’re unaware of their Legal Duty Of Care to car park users under common law?

In any event in the absence of specific legislation requiring them to carry out a Risk Assessment, you’d imagine that common sense would require them.

And to claim that this car park isn’t dangerous, well what can I say?

Meanwhile, Arun District Council Car Parks have announced changes to their Car Parking Charges as detailed below.

Arun District Council Car Park ChargesYou need to read them very carefully to see what’s going on.

Arun District Council Car ParksRemember, it’s only the appearance of the above mud that forced the closure of Arun District Council’s Car Park.

The above poses no risk to public safety or is likely to pose hazard or danger to the elderly or those in wheelchairs or those pushing baby buggies?

A dangerous Car Park and a Twitter Spat with Councillor Paul Dendle, Arun District Council

Arun District Council Car ParksThis is the muddy mess of a car park that Arun District Council have provided for visitors to Pier Road and Harbour Park.

Arun District Council Car ParkHow Arun could expect the elderly and disabled to essentially scramble through this mess is beyond me.

Arun District Council Car ParkDespite Arun District Council’s CEOs (aka traffic wardens) patrolling the South Terrace area just by Pier Road on a regular basis to whop a ticket on anyone who dares to park in the now empty and deserted South Terrace area – they made no report of how dangerous this car park was.

So is it any wonder so many weren’t using it?

Anyway, after a complaint by myself to Arun’s Chief Executive about the dangerous state of this car park, Mr Lynn’s office informs me that this Car Park has now been closed and that visitors to Pier Road can park free in the main Western Green Car Park.

How they intend to police this is anyone’s guess, but meanwhile the aggressive and over-bearing actions of their Traffic Wardens continue.

Arun District CouncilMy last post where I thought that common sense would actually prevail regarding over-attentive Traffic Wardens, was sadly misplaced. Their actions continue. Here they are providing a high visible deterrent for anyone thinking of visiting and supporting our businesses.

You could now play a game of football in the Western end of South Terrace, it’s so quiet. Yet, Arun District Council’s Traffic Wardens continue to patrol this area as if it were some dangerous hot spot.

So, if you’re visiting Pier Road, please use the free car parking area in front of the Windmill Public House.

I have asked Mr Nigel Lynn CEO of Arun for an explanation as to why given the incessant visits and patrols by his parking officers they never highlighted the very obvious and very real dangers of this car park.

I will publish his reply in a future post when available.

Meanwhile, thank you to all of you who continue to support our businesses in Pier Road. We all do appreciate your custom and I can’t say how important it is for us to get your support.

As regular customers know, we have all suffered a loss in trade, in some cases (including our own) this loss has been dramatic and substantial.

And now, to that Twitter Spat with Councillor Paul Dendle..

(you can read it on our twitter feed @pier_road)

Contrary to what Councillor Paul Dendle stated in my twitter exchange earlier, Compensation Packages have not been agreed with Pier Road Traders and these negotiations continue under what are proving to be difficult circumstances for us all.

It’s about time once and for all that the ‘compensation myth’ perpetuated by Candy Flow Towers (AKA Arun District Council) was once and for all put to death. We’re not all sitting here comfortably earning a fat compensation payment while the works continue outside our doors.

Many of us are enduring sleepless nights, worrying as to how we’ll pay our bills and, there has been Job losses.

Councillor Dendle would do well to know that prior to shooting off on Twitter with his insensitive, untrue and highly inflammatory comments.

Incidentally, I discovered that Councillor Paul Dendle is the Arun District Council Cabinet Member responsible for Flood Defences in the Arun District having heard him on the local radio. He was being interviewed by Neil Pringle from BBC Southern Counties in relation to the anger of residents in Pagham who say that their flood defences provided by Arun District Council have failed.

Given that we in Pier Road have been in consultation with Arun District Council and the Environment Agency since 2010 regarding the construction of the Sea Defences in Pier Road, I expressed my surprise that we haven’t seen Councillor Dendle at any of the Stakeholder Consultation Meetings.

I don’t think it’s unreasonable of myself to ask why the Cabinet Member for Flood Defences hasn’t attended any of the Stakeholder Consultation meetings in relation to Arun’s biggest flood defence scheme costing £15million.

Councillor Dendle’s confusing reply was to say he wasn’t invited and then blame me for not inviting him to the meetings.

Given that his council arrange and facilitate these meetings and invite us, I’m understandably confused as to why Councillor Dendle would be believe it’s my responsibility to invite him to his own council’s meeting?

I also don’t think it’s unreasonable that given the dangerous and appalling state of the above car park and the fact that he is the Cabinet Member for Car Parks that I asked him for his opinion on the state of the above Car Park.

Councillor Dendle is an elected representative and I’m astonished that he knows so little about what’s going on in relation to matters in his own Cabinet Portfolio.

I’m even more astonished that he’d take to Twitter to demonstrate this.

A bizarre exchange with Councillor Dendle followed, which you can follow on the Pier Road Twitter Feed @Pier_road.

In any event I will ensure that Councillor Dendle is invited to our next Stakeholder Consultation meeting where some of us, at least are really looking forward to meeting him.

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