Scarborough Borough Council: Stop the installation of rock sea defences in front of Scarborough Spa.
  • Petitioned Tom Fox

This petition was delivered to:

Council Leader
Tom Fox

Scarborough Borough Council: Stop the installation of rock sea defences in front of Scarborough Spa.

    1. Sam Kitson
    2. Petition by

      Sam Kitson

      Scarborough, United Kingdom

The proposed rock sea defences are unnecessary, unsightly, and dangerous.

We would like Scarborough Borough Council to reconsider their decision, and pay particular attention to the report sanctioned by the Sons of Neptune and written by respected coastal engineer Dr. Bruce Denness. This report states that there are more appropriate ways of enhancing the performance of Scarborough Spa's Victorian sea wall at a vastly more economic price.

The arguments against the implementation of this scheme are many, including:
- The degradation of a grade II* listed building and heritage site of international importance;
- Creating a hazard in a popular high traffic public area. This being especially dangerous to children who could fall between gaps in the rock armour resulting in serious injury or loss of life;
- Water users (i.e. surfers, swimmers, kayakers, children in inflatable dinghy's) becoming stranded due to the current that sweeps towards the southern cliffs;
- As seen with the Marine Drive armaments - detritus becoming trapped within the rock armour which subsequently rots producing an infestation of rats and bringing with it the spread of disease and unpleasant odours;
- Making an eyesore of an area of outstanding natural beauty;
- Reducing the area of the beach accessible to the public.

There are many other reasons why this is a very bad idea, and people are encouraged to state their concerns on signing this petition.

Let us not forget that Scarborough is Britain's first seaside resort and our economy relies heavily upon tourism. This scheme will cause irreparable damage to our coastline, which will in turn impact negatively upon our local economy.

The Victorians got it right. Let us not disrespect their legacy by allowing this short sighted scheme to go ahead.

Recent signatures


    1. Thank you everyone - we won!

      Sam Kitson
      Petition organiser

      In case you hadn't already heard, here is some great news that'll make your New Year that bit better.

      A heartfelt thank you to everyone who took the time to sign the petition. There's a letter from Freddie Drabble of the Sons of Neptune in the letters section of this weeks Scarborough News. I'll transcribe it to here when I get a copy.

      Thanks again!

      Tide turns against rock armour at Scarborough Spa

      When plans were revealed to install new multi-million pound sea defences around Scarborough's historic Spa they prompted a storm of protest. Objectors were galvanised into action and hundreds of people signed a petition against the proposals to put boulders on the beach to fend off the waves.

    2. Today's Protest and Download and Print Flyer

      Sam Kitson
      Petition organiser

      Hello all, today we are protesting outside the Spa Complex from 11 until 4. Please join us - ITV and BBC are going to be there. I have created a flyer for the event featuring a QR code directing people to the petition. If you come along, please consider printing a few out and handing them round. Many thanks

    3. Spa Sea Defences Protest

      Sam Kitson
      Petition organiser

      Hello all, just a quick note to those who aren't aware of an event we have planned tomorrow (25/08/13). It's called 'Bring a Spade Party' and the idea is to mark out the area that the boulders would cover in front of the Spa Complex. Please join us and bring your friends and family. ITV are rumoured to be there too. The event has been organised through Facebook

      Thanks again for your support.

    4. Campaign heats up after rock armour incident

      Sam Kitson
      Petition organiser

      Scarborough News have featured a story relating to a teenager getting stuck in rock armour in Whitby (like the proposed Spa rock armour). The teenager very nearly lost his life. The article highlights what will happen if we allow this scheme to go ahead. The article can be read at

      Thanks again for the support - please keep sharing this with anyone who loves Scarborough and National Heritage.

      Well done Sons of Neptune. These guys are a credit to our beautiful town.

      Campaign heats up after rock armour incident

      Marine conservationists have urged Scarborough Council to scrap plans to install boulders in front of the Spa after a teenager got stuck in rock armour near Whitby. The Sons of Neptune has written to the authority to highlight the incident and have urged leaders to extend the public consultation period.

    5. Reached 2,000 signatures
    6. Sons of Neptune on ITV Calendar!

      Sam Kitson
      Petition organiser

      Thanks again to the prolific Sons of Neptune - they brought our campaign to the attention of Calendar viewers. You can read about the news article at Excellent work coupled with an exhibition at Woodend Creative Centre.

      Scarborough sea defences

      Read Scarborough sea defences latest on ITV News. All the Tuesday 9th July 2013 news

    7. Sons Of Neptune Website

      Sam Kitson
      Petition organiser

      Thanks to the Sons of Neptune for detailing the proposed sea defences on their website You will find Dr. Bruce Denness' report on there too. Well worth a read - he is THE leading scientist when it comes to these matters.

      Spa Campaign

      The Sons CAMPAIGN TO SAVE SCARBOROUGH'S SPA SCENERY, SEA & SANDS. Now at risk:- Ruination of the setting and appearance of a Grade II * Listed Building - the Spa - of unique national historic significance - being the birthplace of the seaside holiday in the country.

    8. Reached 1,500 signatures
    9. Article in The Yorkshire Post

      Sam Kitson
      Petition organiser

      Thanks to Mandy Harrow for getting in touch with the Yorkshire Post.

      You can read the article at

      Surge of protest at Scarborough Spa wall rock plan - General news - Yorkshire Post

      Moves to install rock armour around the cliffs beneath Scarborough Spa are facing a wave of protest from hundreds of residents who have branded it a "crime against tourism". Council bosses say the venue could become a casualty of a massive landslip without the boulders to protect it from battering by the sea.

    10. Reached 750 signatures
    11. Thank You

      Sam Kitson
      Petition organiser

      Many thanks to all who have signed the petition and voiced concerns. Lets get as many signatures as possible by spreading the word wherever we can. There has now been an article published about the meeting that was held on Wednesday night and comments that were made. Have a read and maybe add your comments below the story

      Public fury over council officer comments - Local - The Scarborough News

      Comments made by a Scarborough Council officer have been greeted with outrage from sea defence campaigners - who claim they imply half of all Scarborians are 'illiterate'. The controversial comments were reportedly made by Scarborough Borough Council's Principal Coastal Officer, Stewart Rowe, at a public information session on Wednesday May 24 at The Spa.

    12. Reached 100 signatures


    Reasons for signing

    • Tristan Bedford YORK, UNITED KINGDOM
      • 3 months ago

      Because I'm not an idiot, this will not work.

      • 4 months ago

      The backwash stops the next wave by taking the power out of it. With this plan, a vortex would be created causing build up of water and further damage elsewhere than that existing already. This will also be an eyesore as an extension to that on the Marine Drive, spoiling what was a beautiful coastline.

    • Alister Bedford HAXBY, YORK, UNITED KINGDOM
      • 4 months ago

      Will create more problems than those solved. A better sea defense solution needs to be found.

    • David Miller YORK, UNITED KINGDOM
      • 4 months ago

      I am a regular dog walker and collection of rubbish attracting rats would spread disease (Weils) to animals and humans.

    • Anita Kanitz STUTTGART, GERMANY
      • 4 months ago

      “Human beings are so destructive. I sometimes think we're a kind of plague, that will scrub the earth clean. We destroy things so well that I sometimes think, maybe that's our function. Maybe every few eons, some animal comes along that kills off the rest of the world, clears the decks, and lets evolution proceed to its next phase.”

      ― Michael Crichton, The Lost World

      “Let's be clear. The planet is not in jeopardy. We are in jeopardy. We haven't got the power to destroy the planet - or to save it. But we might have the power to save ourselves.”

      ― Michael Crichton


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