PLANS to bolster Canvey’s flood defences will cost more than £40 million and will be filly funded by the Government.

And while the works are ongoing, public access to the island’s beaches may be restricted.

The Environment Agency, which is responsible for the UK’s flood defences, has confirmed the cost of works to revamp Canvey's crumbling 3.2km concrete shoreline sloping structures, known as a revetment.

The government agency aims to have the works finished by summer 2024 – pending Castle Point Council approval of the scheme.

A spokesman for the agency said: “Public access to the beaches may need to be restricted at times but it is planned to carry out work during times of lowest demand. It is not expected that roads will be closed but the public footpath on the tidal defence may be closed temporarily at times.”

The works, which will be carried out in phases to reduce the disruption to the community and the tourism industry, will be fitted into the low-tide window, meaning works will take place over an approximate five-hour period, anywhere between 6am-10pm.

The area has a long history of flooding; in 1953 ‘the great flood’, caused by a tidal surge and storms in the North Sea, claimed 59 lives.