Is the reef finished or not?

We remain in the final construction phase, with final checks being undertaken, as with any major construction project. This involves things such as an inventory of the geo-textile bags, receipt of the bathymetric survey which provides technical data on water depths and navigation of the reef, and staff training (please see note below) before we can sign off the project as complete.

What are the performance related criteria?

Plymouth University has reviewed the design of the reef and found it to be well-designed and well-positioned. For 12 months from completion, Plymouth University will monitor:

The shape of breaking waves ? are they now peeling instead of closing out, and within the stated angles?

Are waves breaking with more power than on the beach?

The number of surfable days, compared to previous years and the number of surfers at both the Pier and the reef areas, compared to previous years.

They?ll do this through site visits and by monitoring data collected from on-site cameras.



Are we now happy that the reef will be safe to use?



Boscombe offers the full package for surfers of all abilities. Beginners can take lessons and learn to surf with a school. The best place to do this is nearer the shoreline, either side of Boscombe Pier. When surfers are competent, they can then progress onto the surf reef.



Our signage on site will make this very clear. We are very close to being able to sign off the project as complete ? and of course this includes having completed all health & safety checks to our satisfaction.



One of the reasons that Boscombe is so suited to an artificial reef is the natural swell and tidal conditions that occur there. These conditions include naturally occurring, sometimes strong currents. These currents change direction twice a day with the tide. They help to push surfers across the reef, either towards or away from the pier. The 'channels' between the bags that make the reef will help to reduce these currents in comparison to having a solid structure, because there is less volume of structure and more 'room' for water to flow.



Bournemouth?s seven miles of seafront are patrolled 364 days a year by the RNLI, who monitor conditions daily. They will of course pay particular attention to the sea conditions on and around the reef, as well as the apparent competency of surfers using it.



Prior to the reef being officially ?opened?, Bournemouth Borough Council is working with the RNLI on staff training during surfing conditions. This will involve lifeguards and supervisors practising their various life-saving and rescue techniques on the reef under conditions with good swell.

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