Channel Coastal Observatory (CCO) Back to Partners

The Channel Coastal Observatory (CCO) is the data management centre for the Defra funded National Network of Regional Coastal Monitoring Programmes. It is hosted by the New Forest District Council, in partnership with the University of Southampton and the National Oceanography Centre. The programme provides a consistent approach to coastal process monitoring, providing information of the development of strategic shoreline management plans, coastal defence strategies and operational management of coastal protection and flood defence.

The CCO are currently contributing to the coastal dynamics objectives of MAREMAP by undertaking a programme of swath bathymetry surveys of the nearshore marine area for each of the regional programme areas. These activities are being carried out in conjunction with the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA). Working in collaboration with British Geological Survey (BGS), the onshore and high resolution nearshore datasets are being stitched together to produce new seamless geological maps that extend offshore and inform nearshore sediment dynamic modelling.

The CCO are helping to define methodologies for mapping and characterisation of the baseline geology (and related geomorphology) in the coastal zone. They are also contributing to an understanding of how coastal geology and processes impact on human activities and how coastal development and management impact coastal geology.

The Strategic Regional Coastal Monitoring Programmes of England started with the Southeast programme in 2002. This was followed by the Southwest programme in 2006. Programmes for the Anglia, East Riding of Yorkshire, Northwest and the Northeast regions followed, with Defra approval, and these programmes are undertaking a similar approach to ensure a nationally consistent method of coastal monitoring.

The team at the CCO are part of a community of marine mappers who share MAREMAP's main objectives.

For more information on the Channel Coastal Observatory (CCO), please visit their website.