WCMC Stakeholder Event 13/10/2022

Session 1 - 26 delegates attended with a mixture of MLA's, NRW and Welsh Government​.

Welcome Address - Emlyn Jones, Gwynedd Council

Beach Replenishment Scheme at Colwyn Bay - Owen Conry, Conwy Council

WCMC overview - Gwyn Nelson, Wales Coastal Monitoring Centre 

Session 2 - The attendees were split into 3 breakout rooms to discuss topics around each of the 3 pillars at WCMC.

Summary Findings from Breakout Rooms

Summary Points from Each Breakout Room

PILLAR 1 – Consistently optimising access to interpreted coastal data – Hosted by William Russell (WCMC)

This group consisted of 8 people with the following key findings;

  • Some find the data portal difficult to use

  • Some MLA’s find the ‘long term trends’ in coastal data to be the most useful

  • Data access must be appropriate to the audience e.g. how useful is it to the public?

    • Perhaps a basic public interface should be separate to an interrogation tool for RMA’s?

  • Each MLA may have individual requirements, e.g. cliff erosion as opposed to beach volume

  • More advanced flood warning would be useful as sometimes flood gates aren’t closed quick enough

 

Pillar 2 Committed to ongoing engagement with all levels of stakeholders – Hosted by Jean-Francois Dulong (WLGA)

This discussion group consisted of 6 people with the following key findings;

  • There is an internal need to better raise awareness of coastal processes amongst elected members and other departments to better plan activities and long-term options.

  • The idea that a range of external coastal stakeholders could be impacted therefore it is important to involve inland stakeholders.

    • NRW access WCMC data to help develop schemes. Other national stakeholders such as Network rail and National trust could also benefit from our data.

      • Equally, they may collect data that may help us ‘fill the gaps’ across Wales.

      • There is a need to explore mechanisms to share data with them.

  • Question: Should the WCMC create some awareness raising material or is it the responsibility of each organisation and coastal group?

    • 1 participant felt that it may be better received from an expert, independent, and not politically driven organisation, especially if the target audience is the public.

 

Pillar 3 Continually ensuring highest priority locations - Emlyn Jones (Gwynedd Council)

This discussion group consisted of 7 people with the following key findings.

  • Question: Where do you feel that coastal issues sit within your organisation?

    •  Some were satisfied that coastal issues were afforded the attention it deserves within their organisation.

    • But – resources are an issue in all organisations, so does this reflect that possibly it is not as high a priority as it is in reality, if resources are not allocated sufficiently? Even NRW were in this category.

  • Question: Do you as an organisation prioritise your coast?

    • All the participants said they did, with varying methodologies but most were operational and problem / reactively driven. Not much strategic weighting.

    • Also, the ‘private’ frontages are dismissed to a degree from considerations. All participants (bar one new starter) were aware of the WCMC Risk Based Methodology and were comfortable with the criteria.