I want to thank everyone at Essex for such a warm welcome to the University. I was already excited to start as the new Director for the Centre for Coastal Communities, but since the formal announcement of my appointment, the many enthusiastic comments, emails, and messages has made me truly excited for what we as a community can do together to address the unique challenges coastal communities face and take advantage of the opportunities they offer.

Over the new few months, my priority is to get to know the community at Essex. I know there are many people at the University who are already doing research about and with coastal communities. One of the core functions of the Centre will be to bring this research community together to share knowledge. I also want to use the resources of the Centre to shine a light on the coastal community research being done at Essex, promote collaboration, and ultimately drive forward evidence that shows what works to realise the untapped potential within our coastal communities, improving lives and giving everyone the opportunity to flourish.

We want to hear from you

I am not just interested in hearing from research staff, but also anyone who works at Essex and has connections to a coastal community. My overall vision for the Centre is one of inclusivity. That the research questions we ask, the data we create and the solutions we offer are truly informed by and for coastal communities. So, if you currently live, or have lived, in coastal communities, please do sign up to our community email list. We promise not to bombard you with emails! And you are welcome to unsubscribe at any time.

Support our new space in Clacton

And last, but definitely not least, the Centre will have a physical presence in Clacton as part of the £20 million town centre improvement project being backed by the Government’s Levelling Up Fund. The Centre will have space within the ‘Clacton Hub’, alongside the Library and Adult Community Learning, which will be located on Carnarvon Road, the site of the current town library and a short walk from Clacton train station. We are in early discussions with Tending Council on the design of the space, to be completed in 2026. If you would like to offer skills or educational training in Clacton, or currently run a clinic or activity at the Colchester or Southend campuses and would potentially be interested in doing so in Clacton, do get in touch.

Contact us

Our dedicated email address is coastal@essex.ac.uk. Please do contact us with any questions or comments, or in response to the call above if you undertake research about or with coastal communities, have a personal connection to a coastal community, or would be interested in using the space in Clacton.