From March to July 2017, I documented the construction of Coastal Protection Works at Bastardstown (i’m sure there is an interesting place-name history), Kilmore, County Wexford, Ireland. I documented the process while taking beach walks with our dog Pepper.
The past few years brought drastic change to sections of the coastline here in South East Wexford, and Bastardstown – or Seaview as it is also known – was no exception. Large sections of the coastline were eroded during the storms of 2014, and it continues to this day. See some of my earlier posts documenting the storms.
Erosion is an ongoing process. The land is always changing, whether its seismic movement, man-made, or the sea reshaping the coastline; it is in constant flux.
When the erosion of land threatens somebody’s home they are left with few choices: Sell up and move, sit tight and wait for the inevitable (which may take decades), or take action and use resources available to protect their land and home.
This project was commissioned by a private client in order to protect their beachfront property from eroding to the point of their house collapsing into the sea.
Large rocks were transported from a quarry on heavy duty trucks, and slowly, and strategically placed along a section of coastline to prevent or delay progressive erosion due to storms, high tides, rising sea levels, and other factors.
It is questionable as to whether the placement of these rocks increases risk of erosion elsewhere along the coast. As a long-time and regular visitor to the beach, it is my opinion that the introduction of Rock Protection around the access slipway altered the surrounding beach landscape and erosion patterns. Some people I have spoken to on this subject think that erosion in this area was exacerbated after the construction of the Kilmore Quay Marina.
There is a notable lack of tree planting in this area. It is hard to grow trees here – though not all species – due to salty sea air, and relentless winds. Tree planting would go some way towards slowing down the erosion process. However, it might take away from your view of the sea, which, over time, may get a little too close for comfort.
Many of the photos are taken from the beach access slipway which already has rocks protecting it, and can be seen in the foreground above.
7th April, my first sighting of the Swallows or Swifts. I wondered what would become of their homes as the construction progressed.
The beach access slipway. the handrail is now in very poor condition.
All photos were taken with the iPhone, and batch processed in Adobe Lightroom.