L’Ancresse wall’s return to nature to cost £1m.

A SECTION of the anti-tank wall at L’Ancresse will be removed and a natural coastline allowed to develop in its place as part of a £1m. project unveiled by the States yesterday evening.


Around 200m of the Second World War anti-tank wall at the eastern end of L’Ancresse is badly damaged and concerns have been raised over whether Environment & Infrastructure should consider removing part of it.

The committee has now approved proposals to progress the development of a realignment of the beach instead of building a replacement wall, in light of its deteriorating condition and having considered past and current coastal engineering advice, it said.

‘The aim of the proposal is to allow a return to a more natural beach environment within the eastern section of the bay,’ committee member Deputy Sarah Hansmann-Rouxel said.

‘L’Ancresse East is already a very popular location and its return to a natural beach – which will be warmer without the shadow of the wall and with longer drying time between tides – is likely to increase its popularity even further.

‘It would also return the coastline in this area to a natural sand dune or shingle ridge, similar to that east of the slipway.’

Subject to planning consent and funding being secured, two protective rock groynes would be constructed – one close to the kiosk and one 200m to the west, near the rock outcrop.

Comments for: "L’Ancresse wall’s return to nature to cost £1m."


Now I really believe our current deputies have lost the plot.

1m pound we have not got to remove a wall that has not changed much in the last 75 years, by this I mean it is still standing.

If you remove it and let nature take it's course, one part of this will be a big storm from the north and then no more beach head as it is a known fact tides are higher now than 50 years ago.

This is why we are building bigger beach defences all around the island. There is not many places left with natural coast line as low lying as L'ancresse.

If we have no money to repair it, then the same should be for removing it. Leave it as it is and let nature take it's course on it like it is.

As for the comment about it would be warmer on the beach without it, who sits on this bit anyway just move lower down beach, or if your sun tan is that important go to the Pembroke end.


I had to check it's not the 1st April. It beggars belief that anyone would own up to spending £1m on this.

Fermain Bay Cliff has a hole in it because the breach in the wall was not repaired. The cliff will eventually collapse and take the cliff path with it (and maybe some people) but I am told there is no money for this.

£1.7 m on the jail, £3m on moving offices and this who is authorising all this expenditure, surely the states members are not that stupid..

Donkey Boiler

The coastal erosion between Fort Le Plomb and Fort Doyle is in far greater need of some money spent on it than removing the tank wall. Seeing that the German government built the wall illegally, and paid no war reparations to the island after the war, the bill for its removal should be sent to Angela Merkel.


Your idea is not as daft as some may think... in theory the costs of removing the wall and restoring the landscape to it's pre-war condition could be argued as being the responsibility of the German government.

Maybe the staff at the Brussels office, in their normal work time, and without claiming absurd overtime payments, could investigate whether such a claim could be entertained in the German or EU courts funded by the German government and / or EU itself.

The danger is that the States will seize upon your idea and launch expensive legal claims through highly paid law offices in London, and then, seven or eight years later, find that the claims are rejected with the island facing millions of pounds worth of legal costs. Knowing the past track record of the States, that is the more likely scenario !

Cher Eugene


"surely the states members are not that stupid"

Oh yes they are.

Oh no the're not

OH YES SOME OF THEM ARE.............


Do they really have nothing to do? Road safety in various areas of the island is perilous yet BB and crew spend budgets on Cycle lane moving, electric car charging points and now this! What is GSP doing?


Herm's north common is a growing structure and has been for thousands of years, I understand. An example of nature doing its thing rather well.



One million quid to restore it as it was before the war ? One million quid ??

Is that an accurate estimate ? Or will it double in costs as with the Salarie Corner fiasco ??

How much to repair the wall ?? Why does it have to be repaired to how it was almost 80 years ago ? Why not do some digging and let the Vale be separated from the rest of the island as it was in times gone by ?

Why not spend money on repairing the Fermain wall or should one pay over a million quid and remove that as well and let nature take its course ?

And if any one has missed it... why spend money on three parasols at the Albert Pier to be used as shelters by the cruise liner passengers ?? If you have a couple of hundred cruise liner visitors waiting for their tenders in the pouring rain, I doubt if they are all going to fit under three parasols ? So what is the point ?? Better spend that money on a decent bus shelter at the Terminus as it is damn horrible waiting for a bus on a cold, wet and windy work-day Winter's evening ... but the States deputies would not know about that !

And electric charging posts ? For 0.1 % of the island's vehicles, most of which anyway have their own means of charging their vehicles at home ??

You're having a laugh !


@Donkey Boiler ,

Couldn't agree more. In 1940, Britain rightly regarded the Islands as indefensible and we were abandoned. Yet the Germans occupied and still fortified the land in a quite appalling manner.

We should do a proper job and regardless of time lapse, send the bill to Germany.

Their debt to the free world has yet to be paid.



A slight correction. In 1946/7 Herm's common was made into a 9-hole golf course at some expense

( Guernsey's course had still to be reconstructed). I'm sure the work of feeding the greens and fairways would have given nature a kick-start in growth before the course was abandoned and the rabbits took over.


Didn't know that! But irrespective of the golf course boost, my comment was based on the studies of the Durham Uni archeo team that made a series of annual visits not so long ago. Prof. Chris S. explained to me that his teams had taken various soil samples during the course of their digs which revealed that Herm's north has risen over a (very) long period of time.

I'd leave the wall as it is. A collapsed wall would likely offer just as much protection as it does now.

Island Wide Voting

One million to demolish a section of the wall

Baz will be asking for the cash at the June Assembly

If he gets the cash he will then go out to tender for the one million job

I wonder what the tenders will come in at?


This island hasn't or shouldn't have money to waste on this wall at the moment.

Fermain needs money to repair the wall that's missing.

We have a department with the figure head of Deputy Barry Brehaut who does not value cost and just wants to be in the limelight at all times.

Time for the assembly to get together and telling Barry Brehaut that enough is enough and to sit down and shut up with his time and money wasting and leave the rest of the assembly to get on with more important issues they were voted in for.

Deputy Gavin st Pier has stated that the government have saved £5million through department savings. What are his thoughts of a minister asking for a £1 million to remove a wall bearing in mind its at no danger to the public yet?


Maybe just leave it to nature to reclame the area

Roger Irrelevant

Maybe we could sell the wall to Trump?


I appreciate that nature is taking it's time about it, but isn't nature doing a reasonable job of slowly demolishing the wall for free?

Sam O

Y Burford ,No, nobody would have considered building a wall there, but the Germans may have done us a favour. The States appear to have accepted that the world is suffering from global warming and as such tidal levels are likely to rise. The 2012 states report on Guernsey's coastal defences did not put Pembroke( although mentioned) down as a priority on the coastal defence list. The States are continually saying that they do not have the money to carry out all the coastal repairs they would like. Yet here they are going to apply for over £1,000,000 . 00 to destroy a wall that can be maintained and has already lasted 70 years and provides a valuable defence to this part of Guernsey's coastline, and replace it with sand dunes and a couple of groynes. There is also the added problem, that no one knows how much maintenance this will require for a number of years until they are happy that the new beach and sand dunes are settled. Of course with possible rising sea levels in the future, heaven knows what extra work will be required, perhaps they will need to build a new wall? This wall is till basically sound, there are some repairs that should be carried out as a priority, such as filling the crack in the wall at the east end with concrete, but the main wall when i looked the other morning showed very little sign of movement and ran true and level. There is an area of the wall base that extends out from the wall that has settled, but to my simple mind some work in this area involving concrete would reinforce it and there is no reason why it shouldn't serve us for another hundred years with some periodic maintenance.

There are other areas of the island with much more priority than using a million pounds or more to destroy something that serves it's purpose well and needs nothing like that amount to bring it up to scratch. This shows once again the States using our money on their pet none urgent projects.

Gary Blanchford. (I'm having awful trouble with the Press site and can't get into the forum with my own name for some reason).

Island Wide Voting

That pretty deputy from the Vale was on TV going on about how removing the wall would improve the beach and provide a nice soft quick drying area with more sun etc

I presume she means it will be very much like the beach between Pulias Pond and the Rousse 'pepper pot' tower (Perry's names the beach as Baie de Port Grat)

Nice vista with rocks and fishing boats, great for kids puddling at low tide,nice soft sand,a half decent car park .... but no kiosk or toilet block ... which is why Baie de Port Grat is always empty

An E & I spokesman says it is not yet clear if the L'Ancresse East kiosk (or indeed the road) will have to be demolished.Sounds like they're pi**ing in the wind in the hope of getting the gullibles in the Assembly to just nod it through


I'm sure Mary Lowe appreciates the compliment IWV, as for Hapless ......... I'm sure she's busy with a video for 4 year olds with lots of sunflowers and sandcastles which will be worth a million of any bodies money.


Just encase the wall with boulders beach side and landslide but use big boulders

Not glorified pebbles like some of our sea defences are protected by.


For goodness sake, what is going on, we cannot afford to repair the sea wall at Fermain, thereby the earth bank etc will eventually erode unto the beach which then cannot be used.

But a German concrete wall which is protecting the land and is no danger to anyone needs to be replaced, exposing the earth bank etc.

But just had a thought, maybe there is a sweepstake amongst the Deputies on who can come up with the most ridiculous suggestion on how to waste our taxes. Yes that must be it, I feel better now, knowing its just a joke.


Exactly, more than a touch or early electioneering going on here by a member of E&I who naively thinks being the spokesperson for this will somehow make her Vale constituency think she is doing a good job for them. Anyone for a video for 4 year olds explaining exactly why this is the highest priority sea defence issue for E&I?