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The Harbours

The areas covered by International, European and National nature conservation designations, and extent of the Indicative Flood Zone for the different harbours are illustrated in the downloadable pdf files.

The Harbours - The shorelines of the East Solent harbours are not dominated by high energy processes acting over long lengths of similar coast, and management operations along one harbour frontage will not normally have implications for coastal defence along adjacent frontages. Therefore, each of the harbours are classified as single Process units, and sub-divided depending on existing or potential flood or erosion risk and the land assets affected.

The harbour shoreline, extending from the Ferry landings on either side of the main entrance channel, comprises a mixture of erosion and flood defences, structures built to enclose land reclamation sites, harbour walls and some stretches of natural coastline. The margins of Langstone Harbour include residential areas, industrial and commercial developments, grazing or arable land, transport and access routes, and land fill sites. The harbour is valued for water based recreation and there are public access routes around most of the harbour. The entire shoreline, marshes and inter-tidal areas are designated for a variety of habitats and are of particular importance for its bird populations.

Portsmouth Harbour - The harbour shoreline extends from Old Portsmouth Point on the east side of the entrance, to the northern tip of the Haslar peninsula on the west. The margins of Portsmouth Harbour are valued for its historic character, tourist attractions, recreation areas, small craft facilities and public access to the shoreline. Much of the present shoreline comprises a mixture of erosion and flood defences, harbour walls, structures built to enclose land reclamation sites and some natural coastline. Large areas of the immediate backshore comprise reclaimed land, with some being used as landfill sites, or for port facilities, Navy properties, urban development, railways, road or public recreation. Within the harbour are a range of inter-tidal, brackish lagoon and terrestrial habitats, important for wintering populations of waterfowl.

Chichester Harbour - harbour shoreline extends from the northern tip of East Head to the tip of Sandy Point spit on either side of the entrance channel. The margins of Chichester Harbour are generally less developed than those Portsmouth and Langstone harbours, but there are still substantial lengths of shoreline needing management. Hinterland is generally low-lying and includes substantial areas of farmland on reclaimed inter-tidal marshes that are potentially at risk from flooding. Most of the shoreline is delineated by seawalls, revetments and embankments, but there are a number of stretches of natural coastline and some structures built to form jetties or marina walls. The area is highly valued for recreation, mainly related to the water, and there are numerous recreational facilities within the harbour. The entire shoreline and inter-tidal area are designated for a variety of habitats and its importance for its bird populations, plus areas of woodland, freshwater pools, brackish lagoons, meadows and other habitats.

Pagham Harbour - smallest of the East Solent harbours, contains areas of mud flats, shingle banks, saltmarsh and reeds. Shoreline defined by flood embankments, revetments and some natural shoreline, with unprotected shingle ridges defining the harbour mouth. Surrounding hinterland comprises low-lying farmland, including large areas of floodable land to the north and the southwest, a large holiday development around Pagham Lagoon and a small residential area at Siddlesham. The harbour margin is valued for public access, with few facilities for water sports. Entire shoreline and inter-tidal area, plus large areas of the harbour margins, are designated for a variety of habitats and for important bird populations. Shingle spit also designated for its coastal landforms and exposures of fossil-rich London Clay.

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