The robust sea wall and iconic wooden and rock groynes which protects the town of Southwold are in stark contrast to the DIY defences which were installed between 2000-9 at neighbouring Easton Bavents.

Erosion rates here are accelerated by the geology of the coast, constructed by a combination of clay and sandstone, students can also witness the hazard of mass movement along the base of the fragile cliffs.

We’ve worked together with the Environment Agency’s Flood and Coastal Risk Management Team to develop the most up-to-date and detailed course possible on an area of coastline which is constantly changing.

Students will complete a study of contrasting management techniques – students will conduct bi-polar surveys, drift tests, beach width measurements and field sketches at 2 neighbouring sites. The course is also complimented by archive aerial photos and historical images showing the extent of the coastal retreat.

AQA: Mass movement, how geological structure and rock type influence coastal forms, the costs and benefits of management strategies, hard and soft engineering, managed retreat – coastal realignment.

Edexcel: The physical processes at work at the coast, mass movement, influence of geological structure on landforms, the advantages and disadvantages of different coastal management defences, managed retreat.

OCR: How human activity, including management works in combination with the geomorphic processes to impact the landscape.

Primary Fieldwork can include:

  • Bi-polar surveys
  • Flood-risk mapping
  • Beach width measurements
  • Drift tests
  • Field sketches

Provided resources:

  • Fieldwork booklet
  • Secondary data
  • Classroom facilities
  • Write-up A3 summary sheet


Low season 1st November - 31st March


Mid season 1st April - 31st May
1st September - 31st October


High season 1st June - 31st July


GFA Southwold 07907299910 / 01728860631
GFA Skegness 07398257944 / 01507603980