Great Yarmouth Tidal Defence Project

Great Yarmouth Tidal Defence Project

Forming part of the Environment Agency’s long-running strategy to improve flood defences and levels of protection, the award-winning Great Yarmouth Tidal Defence project combined environmental innovation and engineering expertise to provide better protection to more than 4,500 homes and businesses.

Link arrow
Read more

The Great Yarmouth Tidal Defence project has seen our teams supporting colleagues from JBA Bentley in delivering this multi-partner project since 2019. As part of the project we have repaired and replaced 4.5km of existing tidal defences, with close consideration for the long-term environmental impact of the defences.

  • Client Environment Agency
  • Location Great Yarmouth, Norfolk
  • Services

Protecting homes and businesses through strategic repairs and replacements of existing defences

Essential improvements were required to extend the asset life of flood defences along the River Bure and River Yare, taking into consideration any environmental constraints.

Due to the different construction times of existing defences which resulted in the variation of corrosion levels, the conventional approach of replacing piled walls along the 4.5km stretch was not viable.

Rather than simply replacing existing defences, we identified areas for refurbishments and conducted extensive testing to implement an innovative solution tailored to each section.

The 'one-size-doesn't-fit-all' strategy targeted the type of repair or replacement for existing defences. Through innovative design and planning, the duration of works and material quantity saved over 5,500 CO2e - a 65% reduction compared against the baseline.

£ 0 m
Value band
0 %
Reduction in carbon
0 k
Homes and business better protected

Innovative solutions supported by environmental expertise

The innovative engineering solutions delivered as part of the Great Yarmouth Tidal Defence project were underpinned by the support of our Environment and Sustainability team. Environmental and ecological assessments were conducted for each package of works, including Environmental Risk Assessments, Water Framework Directive Scoping Assessments and bat surveys. By working with a specialist marine sub-consultant we were also able to offer supporting evidence that the proposed piling method (and the programme) would not be detrimental to migratory fish.

Innovative solutions supported by environmental expertise
Innovative solutions supported by environmental expertise

Award-winning environmental enhancements

Alongside supporting the improvement to existing defences, our Environment and Sustainability team also undertook optioneering to determine how the neglected riverbank could be enhanced. The approved solution was to reprofile the riverbank and install brushwood fascines, rock rolls and reclaimed timber fenders from the quay walls to create an intertidal terrace, encouraging suspended sediment from the tidal river to accumulate and form mudflat. This work contributed to the Great Yarmouth scheme winning Environment and Sustainability Initiative of the Year at the British Construction Industry Awards. The scheme was also a finalist at the British Construction Industry Awards, in the 'Temporary Works Initiative of the Year' category and was named as runner up in the NEC Martin Barnes Awards 2022.

Award-winning environmental enhancements
Award-winning environmental enhancements
Click here to contact us about this project


  • Arrow left white
  • Arrow right white
Technology, Data and Software Development

Delivering transformative technology that is pioneering in the pursuit of flood, water and environmental resilience.

Link arrow Find out more
Modelling and Assessment

Developing leading resilience strategies and solutions founded on the integrated modelling and assessment of water quantity, quality and environmental processes.

Link arrow Find out more

Working within a robust and mature digital delivery environment, our engineering specialists work closely with our modelling, hydrology and environmental teams to ensure designs are developed to create efficient, low-carbon and sustainable solutions.

Link arrow Find out more
Environment and Sustainability

Our specialists in landscape, heritage, ecology, fisheries, EIA, planning and sustainability all work collaboratively with our engineering designers, modellers and our project managers to develop resilient places.

Link arrow Find out more
Resilience and Water Management

Our proven skills and experience make us a natural partner to help support communities and organisations to become more resilient. We support and empower our clients to manage the twin risks of flood and drought, encouraging and delivering effective water management.

Link arrow Find out more
International Development

Working with communities across the world to identify and mitigate flood and environmental risks, support sustainable development and build resilience.

Link arrow Find out more
Cross to close search
Click To:


We use analytics cookies to anonymously track your user journey and interactions with our website. This information is used to help us understand the user experience and to work towards improving the website and the content we publish.


We sometimes make use of third party tracking code to help us determine the succes of any marketing campaigns we might run. This can also be used to ensure you are given content relevant to your interests.

Get in touch…

We'd love to hear from you. Just fill out the form below and a member of our team will be in touch as soon as possible.

Do you have a question or message for |NAME|? Just complete the form below with your information and we'll get back to you as soon as possible.