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In my studies I will try and determine how and why management strategies have been put in place at Brancaster in order to stabilise this stretch of coastline.

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Purpose of Investigation In my studies I will try and determine how and why management strategies have been put in place at Brancaster in order to stabilise this stretch of coastline. By looking at four main objectives I will attempt to produce a holistic view of the processes taking place within the area, my lines of enquiry will include; � Why Brancaster needs managing? � What has been done in terms of management so far? � How effective these strategies have been? � What solutions or strategies might be seen within the future? Brancaster lies on the eastern coast of Britain within the county of Norfolk. Located approximately 7 miles East of Hunstanton, a major tourist town, on the A149, it demonstrates an excellent example of an area of outstanding natural beauty. The coastline itself along the periphery to the North of Brancaster town stretches for 4 1/2 miles and the area covers over 2000 acres of beach. The maps below identify the location of Brancaster... As North Norfolk currently is experiencing eustatic rises in sea level and local isostatic subsidence, localised flooding is becoming a great cause for concern. Together with being situated in an area directly within the path of North Sea Storm fetches and facing a northerly direction, the need for coastal defences and management of Brancaster's vulnerable coastline is becoming vital. Within this site the sea level is rising at a rate of 2mm per annum, demonstrating how precarious the situation is. Erosion and accretion are processes that are continually taking place along this stretch of coastline and although Brancaster is protected somewhat by the deposition and growth of a natural sand dune, these processes can cause many problems. Due to lying in the direct path of the barrier beach known as Scolt Head Island, Brancaster receives a ready supply of beach material through Longshore drift, which is one of the major factors required in order for sand dunes to form. ...read more.


Investigations carried out by Funnel and Pearson (1984) revealed in excess of 8m of Holocene sediments in a section taken across Brancaster's marshes. Here, boulder clay covered chalk surfaces, beneath layers of mud and sand were identified. Therefore, this shoreline is an extremely soft one, which is continually giving rise to a drift of material by wave action. The only formation protecting the marshes is the dunes, which without these natural dunes would be continually being eroded. Problems In Brancaster a 'null-point' has been identified where, due to the change of drift from east to west, unless this point receives a compensatory supply of sand/shingle from offshore, erosion will take place. Any solution to erosion or flooding should bear this in mind. � Brancaster is a 'coastal zone', meaning the interface between the sea and the land. � The coastal system is an open system, where the inputs are in the form of waves and tides. � Transfers are those processes such as longshore drift (see figure below), which move sea water and material through and out of the coastal system, the stores within the coastal system are mainly beaches (etc). � Where there is a balance between these inputs and outputs the system is said to be in equilibrium. � From all the factors above I think it is reasonable, to conclude at this time, that the coastal zone of Brancaster is not in equilibrium and because of the nature of the coastal area management is therefore essential. Excellent beach development occurs on a lowland coast (by constructive waves), with a sheltered aspect or trend, composed of 'soft' rocks, which provides a good supply of material or where Longshore drift supplied abundant material. A 'beach' refers to the accumulation of material occupying the littoral zone, the area between the highest point reached by storm waves at high spring tide and also the area breached during the lowest spring tides. ...read more.


Future data collection will accompany the results from this investigation on how to undertake environmental studies. Researching independently and using my own knowledge to find information from various sources, selecting only the parts required. Finding too much information! Over came this with highlighting required parts. Gaining more information and using previous knowledge, independent learning allowing myself to revise previous work done within the term. I am extremely pleased with how I have managed my time around other pieces of work for other subjects which, have had deadlines and working in my job. I have solved this by working on computers in school during free periods regularly and as a result I was able to produce a good piece of investigation work. Spending too much time possibly on my purpose of investigation, when I could have proceeded with my analysis. Organisation skills improved even more and management of time also, which I can use for other subjects. Analytical skills, annotation of photographs, a skill taking the photographs in itself! Looking and referring back when analysing particular things, for example reference and use of the hand drawn map when analysing photographs. Maximum use of all sources to feed into my study. Unable to find any way of recording data, which I could use in a statistical way in order to identify defences etc. Annotation skills improved and also mapping skills improved, which I could use when continuing with my geography course. Creating my own structure to my work, having a plan and working through that plan. Forgetting to cover certain things in time, having to go back and create other pages etc. Again being independent. Presenting my study in a formal sophisticated manner. Not allowing sufficient room for annotations occasionally! More experience using ICT skills, contributing to my key skills portfolio. Evaluative skills. Being focussed and structured within my work. Trying to cover all the facts and writing too much as a result. Having to cut down what is being said as a solution, again wasting time. Writing in a brief yet focussed manner. 26 Samantha King Page 1 ...read more.

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