ISLANDERS are worried about the state of Canvey’s sea defences after finding signs of damage to its seawall.

The 14-mile wall was battered by vicious storms last winter, tearing away concrete slabs and chunks of tar, leaving some parts of it deformed and possibly weakened.

One of the island’s leading councillors fears if the Environment Agency doesn’t act fast, Canvey could be at risk next time bad weather strikes.

Dave Blackwell, leader of the Canvey Independent Party and Canvey Central ward councillor, urged the agency to take responsibility for the weakened defences and act urgently.

He said: “It looks very strange and certainly needs attention. The wall has almost bubbled up and has taken on a strange form.

“I think the water has got under the brickwork and caused the wall to change shape. The Environment Agency needs to work with the council to ensure the wall is repaired and looked after.”

Barry Palmer, 66, committee member of the Friends of Concord Beach group, is also concerned.

He said: “If it is not treated before long, parts of the wall could collapse. Children use the site and they need to be thought of, too.”

When the agency repaired the wall in January, large amounts of rubble and potentially dangerous materials were not cleared away by workmen.

It prompted Mr Blackwell to describe some repairs carried out to the seawall as “a disgrace”

An Environment Agency spokesman said: “‘We are aware there are concerns over this section of the wall and regularly monitor it for any signs of deterioration.

“The wall is treated to protect it from flood waters.

Should there be any sign of vulnerability, it will be detected during this monitoring.

“All our sea defences are regularly inspected and all defects are reported to our local team, which deals with any problems or issues as they arise.”