Medmerry flood defence wins Prime Minister’s award

Undated handout photo issued by the Environment Agency of an aerial view of the UK's biggest sea defence scheme in Medmerry, West Sussex, which cost �28 million, took two years to build and saw 7km of new walls built behind old defences that had been breached. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday November 3, 2013. It protects 350 properties, two holiday parks and a water treatment works and also provides 180 hectares of coastal habitat for wading birds and protected species, including the water vole. See PA story ENVIRONMENT Flood. Photo credit should read: Paul Bowie/Environment Agency/PA Wire''NOTE TO EDITORS: This handout photo may only be used in for editorial reporting purposes for the contemporaneous illustration of events, things or the people in the image or facts mentioned in the caption. Reuse of the picture may require further permission from the copyright holder. ENGSUS00120131125135005
Undated handout photo issued by the Environment Agency of an aerial view of the UK's biggest sea defence scheme in Medmerry, West Sussex, which cost �28 million, took two years to build and saw 7km of new walls built behind old defences that had been breached. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday November 3, 2013. It protects 350 properties, two holiday parks and a water treatment works and also provides 180 hectares of coastal habitat for wading birds and protected species, including the water vole. See PA story ENVIRONMENT Flood. Photo credit should read: Paul Bowie/Environment Agency/PA Wire''NOTE TO EDITORS: This handout photo may only be used in for editorial reporting purposes for the contemporaneous illustration of events, things or the people in the image or facts mentioned in the caption. Reuse of the picture may require further permission from the copyright holder. ENGSUS00120131125135005

Medmerry’s innovative flood defence project has won the Prime Minister’s prestigious award for excellence in construction.

The new sea wall won the Better Public Building Award after holding firm during last year’s floods and being described as a gold standard of flood defence in the UK.

Four miles of new sea walls opened in November 2013 to reduce flood risk for hundreds of local properties.

The £28 million project created a new wetland for local wildlife with 183 hectares of intertidal habitat.

Much of the site is now managed by the RSPB as a nature reserve.

This new form of defence has helped to save £300,000 taxpayers’ money each year, the cost of repairing the shingle bank.

It also supports local economic growth by allowing businesses to operate year round.

The scheme beat 26 other projects - including Haymarket Station Redevelopment by Network Rail and British Museum World Conservation and Exhibitions Centre - to win the title.

The award was presented at the British Construction Industry Awards ceremony in Park Lane, London.

It recognises projects that are completed on time, on budget and bring real change to the community.