Rich residents furious at planned 27ft-high flood wall at Millionaire’s Row

wall at Millionaire's row
"Fishing boat bobbing around in Poole har" (CC BY 2.0) by Ben Sutherland

Rich Sandbanks residents are up in arms over a plan that will see a 27ft-high concrete wall being built to protect the peninsula from climate crisis-induced flooding. They claim the wall at Millionaire’s Row will be higher than the Great Wall of China and are furious at the idea of the structure going ahead.

The wall would have to be built as part of an already controversial £250m development that wants to turn a historic waterfront hotel into a block of luxury flats, reports The Mirror. The organisation of campaigners have labelled themselves the Sandbanks Community Group, and more than 6,500 letters of objection had been lodged against the plans to demolish the Haven Hotel already.

The anger only intensified after a flood modelling report produced for the developers became public knowledge. It revealed a 27ft-high seas wall defence is needed to stop wave surges. The Sandbanks Community Group claim the monied resort located in Poole Harbour, Dorset, will resemble a “Stalag” and residents would feel like they were trapped in a prison camp should the wall at Millionaire’s Row go ahead.


Original reports thought that the six-storey block of 119 luxury apartments would require only a 12ft sea wall, but the Environmental Agency requested further analysis of the risk of flooding, meaning a new calculation had to be done. The developers insist that the wall at Millionaire’s Row will be mechanical and only rise up from the ground when there is a risk of flooding, and have accused the campaigners of “scraping the barrel” in their attempts to block construction.

David Morley is the chairman of the Sandbanks Community Group, and he said to the Mirror: “It will turn our peninsula into Stalag Sandbanks, as it will make Sandbanks look like a prison camp. The views are really important not only from here but also looking towards Pool Harbour from Purbeck. They will be taken away and that is one of many things wrong with this development.”

Poole is home to the second-largest natural harbour in the world behind Sydney and it is also an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

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