A recently published case study by Welsh Government has set out how Denbighshire County Council has worked with partners to maximise well-being outcomes while working to protect Rhyl from flooding. The case study sets out several beneficial outcomes from the model adopted, including environmental and economic benefits, employment opportunities and health and well-being benefits for participants.

The East Rhyl Coastal Defence Scheme which runs down the Rhyl coast from Splash Point was officially opened in May of 2023, ahead of schedule and under budget. The scheme was funded by Denbighshire County Council and Welsh Government and protects 1,650 properties in East Rhyl from coastal flooding.

The project, delivered by Balfour Beatty placed 128,000 tonnes of rock armour in front of the existing sea defences and a newly added 600 metre sea defence wall and promenade was built to protect the area from current storms and the impact of climate change.

As well as protecting the area from flooding, the scheme helped employment in the region during the construction phase as 85% of local employment used was sourced from within 40 miles of the work site and 99% local subcontractor spend was within those 40 miles. The work created 8 new jobs and over 190 days of work experience was provided for local people. Over 110 students engaged with the scheme through curriculum activities.

The scheme saw environmental benefits also, with 80% of rock revetment materials used being sourced locally and 99% of the waste created was diverted from landfill.

Work is continuing in the town and the Central Rhyl Coastal Defence Scheme, which started in March 2023. The project recently celebrated a landmark event as the first pieces of the new promenade were lowered into place. These are the first of 760 panels which will be laid in the next 12 months to make up the full revetment, which covers the Western Section of the scheme. As well as improving the town’s access to the beach, this new revetment will also absorb energy from the waves at high tides and is a crucial part of the new defences.

Councillor Barry Mellor, Lead Member for Environment and Transport, said:

“This Sea Defence Scheme was a big step forward to ensure the safety of over 1600 properties in East Rhyl.

“As well as protecting the area from coastal flooding, the scheme helped local employment in the area and saw environmental benefits during the construction phase. There were also £350,000 of savings to Denbighshire through using the procurement framework and the scheme was officially opened under budget and earlier than expected. This project shows the positive outcomes that can be delivered through socially responsible procurement.”

To read the full case study go to: https://www.gov.wales/social-partnership-and-public-procurement-wales-act-east-rhyl-sea-defences-case-study