Advertisement

Journal of Coastal Conservation

, Volume 19, Issue 6, pp 821–829 | Cite as

Coastal cliff conservation and management: the Dorset and East Devon Coast World Heritage Site

  • Vincent MayEmail author
Article

Abstract

The 155 km long Dorset and East Devon Coast World Heritage Site is recognized for its 250 million years of earth history, including internationally renowned coastal geomorphological landforms and processes. It is a naturally active coast ranging from vertical ‘hard’ cliffs to very active landslides, protected by both national and international conservation designations. The primary conservation focus of the Site is geoconservation, but its cliff ecosystems also provide outstanding examples of natural resilience to rapid change as well as preserving very important communities. One of the key features of the Site is that its dynamics allow a constant renewal of the visible geology and exposures of fossils, Erosion is accepted as normal. It is a heavily used tourist location with cliff-top paths in use all year and there are concerns about safety, especially for visitors beneath cliffs and crossing mudslides. Management of the Site deals with such issues as fossil collecting and conservation, access, education, coast protection and through a management plan.

Keywords

Coastal cliffs Landslides Coastal ecology Geomorphology Conservation Tourism Biodiversity Dorset East Devon World Heritage Site Geological Conservation Review 

References

  1. Boylan PJ (2008) Geological site designation under the 1972 UNESCO World Heritage Convention. In: Burek CV, Prosser CD (eds) The history of geoconservation, vol 300, Geological Society of London Special Publication., p 279–304Google Scholar
  2. Brunsden D, Lee EM (2004) Behaviour of coastal landslide systems: an inter-disciplinary view. Zeitschrift für Geomorphologie N.F. Supplbd 134:1–112Google Scholar
  3. Cooper RG (2007) Axmouth-Lyme Regis, Devon-Dorset; Black Ven, Dorset; Blacknor Cliffs, Isle of Portland, Dorset. Mass Movements in Great Britain. Geological Conservation Review Series, No.33, Joint Nature Conservation Committee, Peterborough: 209–33, 223–244, 249–252Google Scholar
  4. Dorset County Council, Devon County Council, Dorset Coast Forum (2000) Nomination of the Dorset and East Devon Coast for inclusion in the World Heritage List. Dorset County Council, DorchesterGoogle Scholar
  5. Cox J (2010) Isle of Wight Soft Cliff Project: Management and Classification of Soft Cliff Vegetation of the Isle of Wight. Hampshire and Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust. http://www.iwchines.org.uk/index.php/download_file/view/31/85/ Accessed 2 September 2013
  6. DEFRA (2002) Soft Cliffs Prediction of Recession Rates and Erosion Control Technique DEFRA/Environment Agency Flood and Coastal Defence R&D Programme R&D Project FD2403/1302 http://evidence.environmentagency.gov.uk/FCERM/Libraries/FCERM_Project_Documents/FD2403_500_FRP_pdf.sflb.ashx Accessed 21 October 2013
  7. Dorset and East Devon Coast World Heritage Site (2008) Statement on Site condition and conservation work programme. http://jurassiccoast.org/downloads/Conservation/statement_on_site_conservation_may_2008.pdf Accessed 2 September 2013
  8. Dorset and East Devon Coast World Heritage Site (2010) State of conservation report http://jurassiccoast.org/downloads/Conservation/state_of_conservation_report_2010.pdf Accessed 26 May 2014
  9. Dorset and East Devon Coast World Heritage Site (2012) Fossil collecting. http://jurassiccoast.org/conserving-the-coast/fossil-collecting Accessed 2 September 2013
  10. Dorset and East Devon Coast World Heritage Site Management Plan 2009–2014 http://jurassiccoast.org/downloads/WHS%20Management/jurassic_coast_plan_lowres.pdf Accessed 15 April 2014
  11. Dorset and East Devon Coast World Heritage Site Management Plan 2009–2014 Appendix 2: Statement on the boundaries of the Site, and the World Heritage interests within them. http://jurassiccoast.org/downloads/Conservation/Managing%20the%20Site/jcwhs_management_plan_appendix_2.pdf Accessed 26 May 2014
  12. Edmonds R, Larwood J, Weighell T (2005) Sustainable site-based management of collecting pressure on palaeontological sites http://www.geoconservation.com/EHWH/docs/fossil.pdf Accessed 24 May 2014
  13. Emery KO, Kuhn GG (1982) Sea cliffs: their processes, profiles and classification. Geol Soc Am Bull 93:644–654CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Engels B, Koch P, Badman T (2009) Serial Natural World Heritage Properties An initial analysis of the present situation of serial natural World Heritage properties. World Heritage Convention IUCN World Heritage Studies Number 6 http://cmsdata.iucn.org/downloads/world_heritageserialsites.pdf Accessed 22 May 2014
  15. Goldsmith FB (1977) Rocky cliffs. In: Barnes RSK (ed) The coastline. John Wiley and Sons, London, p 237–252Google Scholar
  16. Goldsmith FB (1997) The vegetation of sea cliffs. In: Van Der Maarel E (ed) Ecosystems of the world 2C Dry coastal ecosystems: general aspects. Elsevier, Amsterdam, p 207–226Google Scholar
  17. Hampton MA, Griggs GB (2004) Formation, evolution and stability of coastal cliffs –status and trends. USGS Professional Paper 1693Google Scholar
  18. Hill C, Ball JH, Dargie T, Tantram D, Boobyer G. (2001) Maritime Cliffs and Slope Inventory, English Nature Research Report Number 426 http://publications.naturalengland.org.uk/file/86023 Accessed 22 May 2014
  19. Kim AKJ, Weiler B (2013) Visitors’ attitudes towards responsible fossil collecting behaviour: an environmental attitude-based segmentation approach. Tour Manag 36:602–612CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Larson DW, Matthes U, Kelly PE (2000) Cliff ecology: pattern, and process in cliff ecosystems. Cambridge University Press, CambridgeGoogle Scholar
  21. Lee EM, Clark AR (2002) The investigation and management of soft rock cliffs. Thomas Telford Ltd, LondonCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Liddle M (1997) Recreation ecology: the ecological impact of outdoor recreation and ecotourism. Chapman and Hall, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  23. Lovric AZ (1997) Woody communities of rocky coasts. In: Van Der Maarel E (ed) Ecosystems of the World 2C Dry coastal ecosystems: General aspects. Elsevier, Amsterdam, p 233–246Google Scholar
  24. Malloch AJC (1997) Dry coastal ecosystems of Britain: cliffs. In: Van Der Maarel E (ed) Ecosystems of the World 2c Dry coastal ecosystems: general aspects. Elsevier, Amsterdam, p 229–244Google Scholar
  25. May VJ (1977) Earth cliffs. In: Barnes RSK (ed) The coastline. John Wiley and Sons, London, p 215–235Google Scholar
  26. May V (1997a) Physiography of coastal cliffs. In: Van Der Maarel E (ed) Dry coastal ecosystems: general aspects. Elsevier, Amsterdam, p 29–41Google Scholar
  27. May V (1997b) Communities of loamy cliffs. In: Van der Maarel E (ed) Dry coastal ecosystems: general aspects. Elsevier, Elsevier Amsterdam, p 227–231Google Scholar
  28. May VJ (2003a) Soft-rock cliffs –GCR site reports Ladram Bay, Devon; Lyme Regis to Golden Cap, Dorset; Ballard Down, Dorset. In May VJ, Hansom JD (eds) Coastal Geomorphology of Great Britain. Geological Conservation Review Series, No.28, Joint Nature Conservation Committee, Peterborough: 138–141, 151–157, 176–81Google Scholar
  29. May VJ (2003b) Gravel and ‘shingle’ beaches –GCR site reports, Budleigh Salterton Beach, Devon; Chesil Beach, Dorset. In May VJ, Hansom JD (eds) Coastal Geomorphology of Great Britain. Geological Conservation Review Series, No.28, Joint Nature Conservation Committee, Peterborough: 251–4, 254–266Google Scholar
  30. May VJ (2003c) The Dorset Coast: Furzy Cliff to Peveril Point. In: May VJ, Hansom JD (eds) Coastal Geomorphology of Great Britain. Geological Conservation Review Series, No.28 Joint Nature Conservation Committee, Peterborough, p 624–642Google Scholar
  31. May V (2004a) Coastal earth science conservation and ecogeotourism. Proceedings of the First International Conference on Management of coastal recreational resources: beaches, yacht marinas and coastal ecotourism. Euro-Mediterranean Centre on Insular Coastal Dynamics, Foundation for International Studies: Valletta, Malta: 251–6Google Scholar
  32. May V (2004b) Sustained natural and recreational assets under intense use. Ibid.: 337–44Google Scholar
  33. May V (2005) Conservation of coastal sites. In: Schwartz M (ed) Encyclopaedia of Coastal Science. Springer, Dordrecht, p 330–337Google Scholar
  34. May V (2008) Integrating the geomorphological environment, cultural heritage, tourism and coastal hazards in practice. Geografia Fisica e Dinamica Quaternaria 31:187–194Google Scholar
  35. Migon P (2009) Geomorphosites and the World Heritage List of UNESCO. In: Reynaud E, Coratza P, Regolini-Bissag G (eds) Geomorphosites. Verlag Friedrich Pfeil, Munich, p 119–130Google Scholar
  36. Natural England (2012) Managing geological specimen collecting: responsible collecting. Natural England Technical Information Note TIN1113Google Scholar
  37. Rauka A (2005) Klint. In: Schwartz M (ed) Encyclopaedia of Coastal Science. Springer, Dordrecht, p 586–587Google Scholar
  38. Rodwell JS (ed) (2000) British plant communities, Volume 5: maritime communities and vegetation of open habitats. Cambridge University Press, CambridgeGoogle Scholar
  39. Saville J (2001) Some aspects of the plant biogeography and vegetation of coastal undercliffs. Bournemouth University, DissertationGoogle Scholar
  40. Stace C (1991) New flora of the British Isles. Cambridge University Press, CambridgeGoogle Scholar
  41. UNESCO World Heritage Centre (2013a) Tentative Lists http://whc.unesco.org/en/tentativelists/979/ Accessed 3 September 2013
  42. UNESCO World Heritage Centre (2013b) Dorset and East Devon Coast http://whc.unesco.org/pg.cfm?cid=31&id_site=1029 Accessed 16 August 2013
  43. UNESCO World Heritage Centre (2013c) St Kilda. http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/387 Accessed 16 August 2013
  44. Walker LR, Shiels AB (2013) Landslide ecology. Cambridge University Press, CambridgeGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Science and Conservation Advisory GroupDorchesterU.K.

Personalised recommendations