Looe Flood Defence and Regeneration Scheme

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Latest News - thank you to everyone who shared their views and comments on the options and potential finishes and materials for the Flood Defence scheme during the recent engagement events and online survey.

The project team are now reviewing the feedback and will be using the results to shape the next phase of the scheme.

We will be publishing a report on the feedback and the next steps once this process has been completed.


Update on October 2022 engagement events

A huge thank you to everyone who came along to the engagement events at the West Looe Centre.

The aim of the three events was to enable people to hear about the story so far and to give an update on progress and options considered, as well as to provide an opportunity to input into finishes and materials.

You can view a short film about the engagement events below :


It was a very busy three days for the project team, with hundreds of people taking the opportunity to ask questions and comment on the current proposals.


You can view the information presented at the events here. Copies of the exhibition boards are also available to view in the document section of this site.

You can also watch a short animation showing the tidal barrier here.

As well as providing information about the options, including the preferred option, we also wanted to seek people’s views on the materials and finishes which could be used in the scheme.

We will be doing a lot more work on this element of the scheme in the coming months, including working with local artists, but below are some of the themes which were presented to people at the exhibition.



We are also interested in your views on how the town can adapt to climate change and sea level rise in the future. Even with hard defences, such as a tidal barrier, we will still have to deal with the a rising sea level and increased storminess in the next 50 years.

We have been talking to local businesses to obtain information on how they have been affected by the flooding and seeking their views on the proposals. This information will be vital in helping us to demonstrate the economic benefits of the project and support our case for investment in flood defence and regeneration in Looe.

If you have not been contacted by a member of the project team and would like to share your views please contact us at LooeFloodDefence@wsp.com

The team are now analysing all the feedback and will be using the results to shape the next phase of the scheme.

Looe is already one of the most frequently flooded coastal towns in the UK. Over the next 100 years, sea levels are predicted to rise by more than 1 metre as a result of climate change, threatening even more parts of the town.

These include the health centre, the police and fire stations, main food stores and cafes and the fish market, as well as major transport links such as the A387 and the railway station.

Doing nothing is not an option and we want to ensure that the final Flood Defence and Regeneration Scheme meets the needs of all parts of the local community.

Future Adaptation:

As well as continuing to build a strong economic case for the scheme and developing the engineering solutions needed to enable the town to manage the risk of flooding over the next 50 - 100 years, we also want to work with the local community to produce a Flood Adaptation Plan.


This will identify measures which go well beyond 100 years, giving the community time to adapt to the changing climate so it can live with the consequences of increased flood risk in the future. This will include examination of existing planning policies to prevent inappropriate development in areas of flood risk, evolving transport policies, and investigating measures to generate income to support transformation projects.

About the Looe Flood Defence and Regeneration Scheme

Urgent action needs to be taken to reduce the extremely high risk of further coastal flooding and erosion in Looe.

The main aims of the proposed scheme are to:

  • Protect Looe from frequent and severe flooding and damage over the next 50 - 100 years, giving the community time to adapt to a changing climate.
  • Enhance the overall environmental integrity of the designated sites and water bodies.
  • Work to promote economic growth in East Cornwall by:
  • Protecting key transport links
  • Protecting and enhancing the visitor and marine economy

By delivering a scheme which reduces the risk of flooding, attracts widespread support, secures all the necessary approvals and permissions, and is capable of being funded, we can protect homes, businesses and key transport links in and around the town, at the same time as enhancing the marine and visitor economy.

This is a major project which will have a significant impact on the town.

A number of different options have considered as potential solutions during the past 20 years. Following detailed consideration, only one – the tidal barrier scheme – was considered viable.

In July 2015 Looe Harbour Commissioners funded work to develop proposals for a new food defence scheme. The outcome was supported by 95% of local residents and landowners.

in 2020 Cornwall Council’s Cabinet agreed to support the development of the Looe Flood Defence project, allocating £2.3m from the South-East Cornwall Regeneration Programme.

In 2021 the project was awarded a £2.3 million Defra Flood Defence Grant in Aid grant. This is being used to complete work on preparing the outline business case– the next key stage in securing the Government, and other sources of funding, needed to deliver the scheme. Further information about this funding is available in the News Feed section below .

The scheme is being led by Cornwall Council and the Environment Agency. The partners are also liaising with a number of local organisations, including Looe Harbour Commissioners, Looe Town Council, Looe Development Trust, West Looe Town Trust, East Looe Town Trust, the RNLI and local MP Sheryll Murray to turn the proposals into an economically viable and environmentally friendly solution to the town’s tidal flooding challenges.

There was overwhelming public support for the proposals put forward by the Harbour Commissioners in 2015 and we want to work with the local community to shape the final scheme.

The proposed Looe Flood Defence and Regeneration Scheme includes:

  1. A tidal barrier which will close when flooding is likely
  2. A southern breakwater to prevent overtopping of the flood gates during tidal surges, provide a shelter for vessels when the flood gates are closed and protect Hannafore Road.
  3. An extension to the Banjo pier, creating a low water landing stage providing boat access at all states of the tide.
  4. A cut-off wall below East Looe beach to prevent tidal flooding bypassing the tidal barrier
  5. A separate low level walkway from Pennyland in the town to Hannafore

Current plans for the positions and lengths of piers are likely to evolve in response to wave modelling and ecology, and commercial issues.


You can view a short film about the scheme below:

Tidal barrier

We have produced a short animation showing the proposed tidal barrier.

You can view the short animation showing the proposed tidal barrier below :



Tide gauge

We have installed a new tide gauge at the harbour to measure the water level in the harbour 24 hours a day, every day. This is providing vital information on the risk of flooding and how often Looe floods, as well as helping to improve predictions of storm surges.

You can view a short film about the tide gauge here :


Reef cubes trial

Earlier this year we deployed reef cubes off Banjo Pier as part of a trial into ways in which we can lower the carbon footprint of the proposed flood defence structures and boost marine biodiversity.

Supplied by local company ArcMarine Ltd, each reef cube is made from a special low-carbon, marine-friendly concrete, with nooks and crannies designed to create an ideal home for marine wildlife such as seaweeds, barnacles and limpets, as well as larger species such as lobster and crab.

You can watch a short film about the trial here

Current Timeline

  • Completion and submission of Outline Business Case March 2023
  • Finalising detailed designs 2023 / 2024
  • Harbour Revision Order Application 2023 / 2024
  • Planning Approval 2024/ 2025
  • Funding decision 2024 / 2025
  • Construction 2025 / 2028


You can give us your views on the proposals on our discussion forum. You can also email us at LooeFloodDefence@wsp.com



Latest News - thank you to everyone who shared their views and comments on the options and potential finishes and materials for the Flood Defence scheme during the recent engagement events and online survey.

The project team are now reviewing the feedback and will be using the results to shape the next phase of the scheme.

We will be publishing a report on the feedback and the next steps once this process has been completed.


Update on October 2022 engagement events

A huge thank you to everyone who came along to the engagement events at the West Looe Centre.

The aim of the three events was to enable people to hear about the story so far and to give an update on progress and options considered, as well as to provide an opportunity to input into finishes and materials.

You can view a short film about the engagement events below :


It was a very busy three days for the project team, with hundreds of people taking the opportunity to ask questions and comment on the current proposals.


You can view the information presented at the events here. Copies of the exhibition boards are also available to view in the document section of this site.

You can also watch a short animation showing the tidal barrier here.

As well as providing information about the options, including the preferred option, we also wanted to seek people’s views on the materials and finishes which could be used in the scheme.

We will be doing a lot more work on this element of the scheme in the coming months, including working with local artists, but below are some of the themes which were presented to people at the exhibition.



We are also interested in your views on how the town can adapt to climate change and sea level rise in the future. Even with hard defences, such as a tidal barrier, we will still have to deal with the a rising sea level and increased storminess in the next 50 years.

We have been talking to local businesses to obtain information on how they have been affected by the flooding and seeking their views on the proposals. This information will be vital in helping us to demonstrate the economic benefits of the project and support our case for investment in flood defence and regeneration in Looe.

If you have not been contacted by a member of the project team and would like to share your views please contact us at LooeFloodDefence@wsp.com

The team are now analysing all the feedback and will be using the results to shape the next phase of the scheme.

Looe is already one of the most frequently flooded coastal towns in the UK. Over the next 100 years, sea levels are predicted to rise by more than 1 metre as a result of climate change, threatening even more parts of the town.

These include the health centre, the police and fire stations, main food stores and cafes and the fish market, as well as major transport links such as the A387 and the railway station.

Doing nothing is not an option and we want to ensure that the final Flood Defence and Regeneration Scheme meets the needs of all parts of the local community.

Future Adaptation:

As well as continuing to build a strong economic case for the scheme and developing the engineering solutions needed to enable the town to manage the risk of flooding over the next 50 - 100 years, we also want to work with the local community to produce a Flood Adaptation Plan.


This will identify measures which go well beyond 100 years, giving the community time to adapt to the changing climate so it can live with the consequences of increased flood risk in the future. This will include examination of existing planning policies to prevent inappropriate development in areas of flood risk, evolving transport policies, and investigating measures to generate income to support transformation projects.

About the Looe Flood Defence and Regeneration Scheme

Urgent action needs to be taken to reduce the extremely high risk of further coastal flooding and erosion in Looe.

The main aims of the proposed scheme are to:

  • Protect Looe from frequent and severe flooding and damage over the next 50 - 100 years, giving the community time to adapt to a changing climate.
  • Enhance the overall environmental integrity of the designated sites and water bodies.
  • Work to promote economic growth in East Cornwall by:
  • Protecting key transport links
  • Protecting and enhancing the visitor and marine economy

By delivering a scheme which reduces the risk of flooding, attracts widespread support, secures all the necessary approvals and permissions, and is capable of being funded, we can protect homes, businesses and key transport links in and around the town, at the same time as enhancing the marine and visitor economy.

This is a major project which will have a significant impact on the town.

A number of different options have considered as potential solutions during the past 20 years. Following detailed consideration, only one – the tidal barrier scheme – was considered viable.

In July 2015 Looe Harbour Commissioners funded work to develop proposals for a new food defence scheme. The outcome was supported by 95% of local residents and landowners.

in 2020 Cornwall Council’s Cabinet agreed to support the development of the Looe Flood Defence project, allocating £2.3m from the South-East Cornwall Regeneration Programme.

In 2021 the project was awarded a £2.3 million Defra Flood Defence Grant in Aid grant. This is being used to complete work on preparing the outline business case– the next key stage in securing the Government, and other sources of funding, needed to deliver the scheme. Further information about this funding is available in the News Feed section below .

The scheme is being led by Cornwall Council and the Environment Agency. The partners are also liaising with a number of local organisations, including Looe Harbour Commissioners, Looe Town Council, Looe Development Trust, West Looe Town Trust, East Looe Town Trust, the RNLI and local MP Sheryll Murray to turn the proposals into an economically viable and environmentally friendly solution to the town’s tidal flooding challenges.

There was overwhelming public support for the proposals put forward by the Harbour Commissioners in 2015 and we want to work with the local community to shape the final scheme.

The proposed Looe Flood Defence and Regeneration Scheme includes:

  1. A tidal barrier which will close when flooding is likely
  2. A southern breakwater to prevent overtopping of the flood gates during tidal surges, provide a shelter for vessels when the flood gates are closed and protect Hannafore Road.
  3. An extension to the Banjo pier, creating a low water landing stage providing boat access at all states of the tide.
  4. A cut-off wall below East Looe beach to prevent tidal flooding bypassing the tidal barrier
  5. A separate low level walkway from Pennyland in the town to Hannafore

Current plans for the positions and lengths of piers are likely to evolve in response to wave modelling and ecology, and commercial issues.


You can view a short film about the scheme below:

Tidal barrier

We have produced a short animation showing the proposed tidal barrier.

You can view the short animation showing the proposed tidal barrier below :



Tide gauge

We have installed a new tide gauge at the harbour to measure the water level in the harbour 24 hours a day, every day. This is providing vital information on the risk of flooding and how often Looe floods, as well as helping to improve predictions of storm surges.

You can view a short film about the tide gauge here :


Reef cubes trial

Earlier this year we deployed reef cubes off Banjo Pier as part of a trial into ways in which we can lower the carbon footprint of the proposed flood defence structures and boost marine biodiversity.

Supplied by local company ArcMarine Ltd, each reef cube is made from a special low-carbon, marine-friendly concrete, with nooks and crannies designed to create an ideal home for marine wildlife such as seaweeds, barnacles and limpets, as well as larger species such as lobster and crab.

You can watch a short film about the trial here

Current Timeline

  • Completion and submission of Outline Business Case March 2023
  • Finalising detailed designs 2023 / 2024
  • Harbour Revision Order Application 2023 / 2024
  • Planning Approval 2024/ 2025
  • Funding decision 2024 / 2025
  • Construction 2025 / 2028


You can give us your views on the proposals on our discussion forum. You can also email us at LooeFloodDefence@wsp.com



Your experiences of flooding in the area

We want to hear your experiences of flooding in Looe to help shape our plans – you can share your experiences and learn about the experiences of others. 

Thank you for sharing your story with us.

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    Please join the facebook group for information and updates

    by StuG, 7 months ago

    There is a facebook group setup to share information and updates and to keep a central library of information to make it easier to find and digest. Please join if you wish.

    https://www.facebook.com/groups/1380962389046021

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    Serious Concerns from Residents

    by SG, 8 months ago

    I am writing on our own behalf and also on behalf of many of the residents in Hannafore Road as we have a lot of concerns about the proposed project. Our row of Victorian properties are directly above the proposed work area and we would all like reassurances that the vibrations from the project will not damage either our properties , the banks below, or any of the unstable areas along Hannafore Road which have already experienced landslips on several occasions.

    We are also very concerned about the noise and air pollution we will suffer for the several years the... Continue reading

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    Newsletters

    by FionaA, about 1 year ago
    I'm looking for the newsletters about this project. I understand there was one published in Aug '21 and another is just published (Nov'21).

    Where can I find them?

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    Summer Flash Flood Response

    by Samuel Gill, almost 2 years ago
    During the last major flash flood at the end of august the major damage caused to our businesses resulted from a mix of heavy rain and tidal influx up the drains.


    I believe your scheme will aid by keeping these drains emptier by stopping the tidal surge. However major damage was also caused by the failure to keep the drains clear up Tower and Barbican Hill road (where the water in the gutters spurted upwards of a metre at each drain due to the pressure of the blockage).

    Improving the existing drainage and increasing its capacity to drain water elsewhere... Continue reading

Page last updated: 29 Nov 2022, 02:47 PM