The Cost of a Reef?

ACADEMICS at Plymouth University need your help to gauge the economic impact of the artificial reef at Bournemouth.

After 12 months delay the £3.2m project located east of Boscombe Pier opened in 2009 before being closed in March 2011, following significant alteration to the profile of the 55 giant sand-filled bags nestling 225 metres out to sea.

Opening to fanfare of publicity and a healthy dose of optimism the reef initially attracted positive reviews. "British surfers finally have a patch of water to be proud of. They are, by and large, delighted with the results. Nothing else like it exists in the world." - Ed Chipperfield, The Sunday Times. The idea was that as the reef bedded-down things would only get better.

This proved not to be the case and now Emma Rendle, from the Marine and Coastal Policy research group (MarCoPol) at Plymouth University needs your help to analyse the socio-economic impacts of the reef. You can fill out the survey here.

"In the wake of future reefs, it is important to understand surfer spending habits and their opinions of ASRs and begin to answer certain questions." Said Emma "Can we quantify the benefits of ASRs, and if so, do they outweigh the cost of construction?

"This is one of the most extensive surveys of surfers in the UK. The questionnaire is designed to investigate perceptions and attitudes of the surf community. This research is important in order to understand the opinions of surfers regarding the use of Artificial Surfing Reefs. It will be used to aid decisions by coastal planners and policy makers in similar future projects."

Please click the link here and spend 10 minutes answering some simple questions. This research is independent and conducted without the intervention of vested interests.


Ed Temperley

MSW editor. Instagram @edtemperley