Harbour & Seafront Wave Modelling

Project name

Folkestone Seafront & Harbour


Folkestone, Kent


Buro Happold

Description of Project

Detailed wave modelling and overtopping analysis of the Folkestone Harbour frontage to inform a Flood Risk Assessment for the seafront development comprising over 1000 homes, commercial and retail units.


The wave climate along this section of coastline and within the harbour was unknown and consequently a detailed wave model was required to be constructed to enable analysis of wave overtopping at the harbour and seafront. Herrington Consulting undertook wave height/water level joint probability analysis and constructed a wave transformation model to derive the nearshore wave climate. This data was subsequently used to drive a more detailed wave model, which was constructed to ascertain the wave climate within, and surrounding the harbour. Various breakwater structures also were tested to evaluate the impact they would have on wave overtopping along the seafront and a detailed series of reports were compiled.

Numerical Modelling

Detailed 2D hydrodynamic flood model constructed, wave overtopping calculations, wave transformation model, nearshore wave climate analysis using Boussinesq modelling, joint probability analysis and parametric beach modelling.


The completed suite of numerical models and reports enabled the client to feedback the information to the design team, to enable the overall Masterplan to be adjusted - taking into account the effects of wave overtopping along the frontage. This information was subsequently fed into the Flood Risk Assessment for the site.