New vegetated shingle habitat at Black Rock

14 April 2022

This 600m long boardwalk runs through the entire new wildlife site at Black Rock, allowing close range views of the emerging habitat

This 600m long boardwalk is a 15-minute stroll from Duke’s Mound to the Black Rock terminus. There are crossings over the railway and ‘jetties’ allowing easy access towards the shore.

The boardwalk is constructed from a dense upcycled plastic composite made from 220 tonnes of selected recycled plastic, equivalent to over 7 million plastic bottles. This material was chosen as it is a more sustainable option than timber in this location, which would require ongoing maintenance.

The boardwalk runs through the entire new wildlife site, allowing close range views of the emerging habitat. It allows people to get in amongst the young evolving plants which are protected by the balustrade as they settle into their new home.

A unique wave design has been formed in the shingle to provide a range of micro-habitats for the new plants and protect them from harsh coastal conditions. The 1.5 hectare site consists of three habitat areas:  the East and West areas consist of regular wave formations shaped using beach shingle with a finer layer of grits and sands in the wave troughs. The East waves (Rollers) are 1.8m approx. from trough to crest. The West Waves (Ripples) are smaller at 1.2m approx.

Planting and seeding will provide accelerated vegetation, but the biggest contribution will come from seeds already present in the sands and grits taken from the original wildlife site close to the sea wall, and – with time – through natural colonisation.


walking through the shingle habitat

By The Living Coast

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