Current Projects

North West Awards for Coastal Excellence

In 2010 the North West Coastal Forum established a new biennial award scheme: NW ACE. The scheme is designed to recognise achievement of individuals, community groups and organisations, both commercial and public sector in contributing to the delivery of a more sustainable coast in North West England. There are 3 categories: Coastal Champion open to individuals; Coastal Community Action open to voluntary groups; and Coastal Best Practice open to commercial and public sector organisations for particular projects.

The winners of the 2023 Awards were announced at the conference: ‘Climate Change on the NW Coast: Challenges facing coastal communities and working with nature to adapt to coastal change’ which took place on 29th & 30th March 2023,  Grange-over-Sands. The 2023 NWACE were funded through the Championing Coastal Coordination (3Cs) initiative, which is led by the Environment Agency with support from Natural England, the Marine Management Organisation and the Association of Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authorities. 

≈ Coastal Community Action:  Tideliners – a litter picking community group focusing on the Keer Estuary, Morecambe Bay (Warton/Carnforth area).

≈ Coastal Best Practice: Fylde Sand Dunes Project –  A partnership project between the Lancashire Wildlife Trust, Blackpool and Fylde Councils working together to future-proof the dune system and community to widen the dunes seawards up to their natural limit to provide a sustainable sea defence, create a diverse and resilient ecosystem and contribute towards a climate resilient coast.

A pdf with more details about the 2023 winners can be downloaded here:

Download “NWACE-2023-WEB.pdf”

NWACE-2023-WEB.pdf – Downloaded 2015 times – 3.55 MB

The 2016 award winners have been announced and were presented at the October 2016 Sandscapes: Celebrating the Natural and Cultural Capital of Coastal Landscapes conference in Southport by Dave McAleavy, Chair of the North West Coastal Forum. The 2016 winners were:

≈    Coastal Champion: Andy Shore, FCRM Senior Advisor (Coast), Environment Agency

≈    Coastal Community Action: Morecambe Bay Partnership’s Cultural Heritage Volunteers

≈    Coastal Best Practice – Education and Skills: Sefton Council’s Natural Alternatives Team for the Crosby Nature Trail

≈    Coastal Best Practice – Culture and Heritage: Sefton Coast Landscape Partnership for ‘The Flock’

≈    Coastal Best Practice – Integrated Coastal Management:Morecambe Bay Partnership

≈    Coastal Best Practice – Leisure and Tourism: Shore Cottage Studio

For more information on the winners and why they won follow this link or download the presentation below:

Download “NW ACE 2016 Winners”

C-Salthouse-NW-ACE-2016-full-for-website.pdf – Downloaded 2546 times – 2.57 MB

The 2014 award winners have been announced and were presented at the November 2014 Destination Coast! conference in Grange-over-Sands by CEO of British Destinations, Peter Hampson. To see who won what and why follow this link  or download the report below:

Download “NW ACE 2014 Winners and Highly Commended”

NW-ACE-REPORT-2014.pdf – Downloaded 2319 times – 3.80 MB

Details about the 2012 awards are given below:

The 2012 awards were announced at the ‘Delivering Sustainable Coasts’ conference in Southport on 18 & 19 September 2012 and were presented by Professor Annie Worsley, Chair of the North West Coastal Forum.

The winners were:

Michelle Newton, Darren Lloyd and Julie Kirk of Sefton Council and Caroline Fraser of Marshside Primary School collecting the NW ACE 2012 Coastal Best Practice – Sefton Council for Imcore



Cllr Heaslip, Allerdale Borough Council with Dr Irving and Graeme Proud from Solway Coast AONB accepting the NW ACE 2012 for Coastal Community Action on behalf of Solway Coast Community Volunteer Group.




Carl Green (Coastal Champion – Professional)

Keith Budden (Coastal Champion – Volunteer)

Morecambe Bay BeachCare Group (Joint winner – Coastal Community


Solway Coast Community Volunteer Group (Joint winner –  Coastal Community Action)

Sefton Council (Coastal Best Practice)


A summary of the award winners is available:

Download “NW ACE 2012 Results”

NWACE-2012-Results.doc – Downloaded 3227 times – 125.50 KB

The full NW ACE 2012 presentation can be downloaded below:

Download “The 2012 NW Awards for Coastal Excellence”

The-2012-NW-Awards-for-Coastal-Excellence1.pdf – Downloaded 4509 times – 2.02 MB

The 2010 awards were presented by the North West Coastal Forum Chairman, Graham Lymbery, during the 2010 Regional Coastal Conference at t

he Maritime Museum, Liverpool in December. The winners were:

  • Ian Rowlands (Coastal Champion);
  • Wyre Borough Council and Birse Coastal (Coastal Best Practice)
  • Friends of the Estuary (Lytham) (Coastal Community Action).

Download “NW ACE winners receiving their awards”

NW-ACE-Coastal-Best-Practice-winners.pdf – Downloaded 2581 times – 222.60 KB

Details of the 2010 winning and highly commended entries are in the document below:

Download “NW ACE winners and highly commended”

ACE-awards-winners.pdf – Downloaded 2210 times – 338.24 KB

Regional Coastal Coordination

For the 21-22 and 22-23 financial years the North West Coastal Forum is working with the Coastal Partnerships Network to explore the benefits of regional coastal coordination and what a regional coastal hub might look like as part of the national ‘Coastal Partnerships Network: A National Framework Championing Coastal Coordination’ project funded through the Championing Coastal Coordination fund*.

In 2023 we undertook a range of activities to further develop the regional hub for coastal coordination in North West England. The work, Development of the regional hub for coastal coordination in North West England built on the work undertaken in Phase 1, namely exploring the value of regional coastal coordination which took place in the 21-22 financial year (see below).

The core focus of work undertaken between January to March 2023, was to aid the development of the regional hub for the North West, bring together a range of initiatives looking at coastal habitat restoration to provide a basis for moving forward together and to ensure that the NWCF is in a position to employ a regional coordinator for the hub going forwards, is in a position to seek other sources of funding and has a business plan in place for the next 2 years. We also participated in national work on the NFCC Leadership Group, the framework development and transboundary coordination work.

Key outputs include establishing the NWCF as a charity, holding a workshop to develop stronger regional coordination of and explore issues and opportunities around delivering coastal habitat creation and restoration in NW England, working with the Coastal Group to hold a regional conference on climate change adaptation and running the North West Awards for Coastal Excellence. 

In 2022 we led a Regional Demonstration Project to explore the benefits of a regional approach to coastal coordination in North West England. This was one of a series of Regional Demonstration Projects taking place across England as part of the ‘A National Framework Championing Coastal Coordination’ project led by Coastal Partnerships Network (CPN) and supported by the Championing Coastal Coordination (3Cs) fund*.

Established for over 20 years the Forum is well placed to test and evaluate the value of regional coastal coordination. The project was designed to explore perspectives on the benefits and opportunities of, and risks and challenges to, a regional approach to coastal coordination, including a review of the role and value of the North West Coastal Forum and the opportunities and challenges it faces. In addition, work has taken place to explore mechanisms around coastal information sharing.

Work undertaken included:

  1. NWCF Management Board and key stakeholder organisations review and workshop to explore benefits / value / risks of regional coastal coordination mechanisms such as NWCF and any issues thrown up by the need for cross border governance with Scotland and Wales; discover any changes needed to ensure NWCF is fit for the future and collate thoughts on key questions to inform the development of the national framework.
  2. A collaborative coastal projects workshop to bring together 3Cs projects and other coastal projects in the region and explore questions relating to 3Cs project deliverables – local, regional and national, and future opportunities for working better together.
  3. Piloting and testing the value of a ‘What’s Happening on the North West Coast’ online resource pulling together key policies and strategic plans, projects and partnerships.

The findings from all the work undertaken are summarised in the full Regional Demonstration Project report and are given, in brief in the Executive Summary below. 

Download “3Cs-Executive-Summary-the-North-West-Experience.pdf”3Cs-Executive-Summary-the-North-West-Experience.pdf – Downloaded 65 times – 2 MB

As part of the 2022 project a pilot ‘What’s Happening on the North West Coast’ online resource was created. The aim of this was to:

  • provide a comprehensive overview of strategic actions and policies at sub-regional or regional scale of significance for the North West coast, and which contribute to creating a more sustainable future for our coast
  • help organisations working on the coast to identify key gaps in activity and find opportunities for shared learning, best practice and future collaboration.

The intention is that this document is ‘live’ and updated regularly, however this is subject to further funding being sourced.

The 3Cs funding offered an opportunity to test whether such a report might be welcomed, and to revisit the vision and strategic outcomes developed in 2008 and test whether they are still fit for purpose or need updating to reflect current needs and ambitions.

Download “Whats-Happening-on-the-NW-Coast-2022-Pilot-Report-1.pdf”Whats-Happening-on-the-NW-Coast-2022-Pilot-Report-1.pdf – Downloaded 72 times – 2 MB

IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER:  the information in the report has been provided for publication by a range of external organisations and is reproduced here in good faith; as such the North West Coastal Forum is not responsible for any errors or inaccuracies but will endeavour to correct any inaccuracies if these are found. Please check information provided before relying on it and report any errors or inaccuracies found to [email protected]

A  Collaborative Coastal Projects in North West England workshop was held as part of the work to bring together organisations delivering coastal projects in partnership with others to:

  • Showcase collaborative coastal project work taking place in North West England and its cross-border areas, including those supported through the Championing Coastal Coordination (3Cs) fund
  • Explore common interests and future opportunities for joint-working
  • Provide an opportunity to consider key questions around coastal management, governance and information sharing arising from the ongoing 3Cs project work that will feed into national recommendations

The workshop was intended for any organisation progressing or planning to progress collaborative projects on the coast of North West England, including the full cross border extent of the Solway Firth and the Dee Estuary. A brief summary report of the workshop and breakout sessions, plus the presentations on the day are available to download below.

Information is also provided below, for completeness, re an additional 3Cs project taking place in NW England on the Wyre estuary (MoRPH Estuaries) as this was mentioned during the plenary discussion.

Download “Collaborative-Coastal-Projects-in-NW-England-Workshop-230222-Report-.pdf”Collaborative-Coastal-Projects-in-NW-England-Workshop-230222-Report-.pdf – Downloaded 55 times – 1 MB

Download “Welcome-and-Introducing-the-National-and-Regional-Championing-Coastal-Coordination-Work.pdf”Welcome-and-Introducing-the-National-and-Regional-Championing-Coastal-Coordination-Work.pdf – Downloaded 37 times – 3 MB

Download “ECO-CoBS-SB.pdf”ECO-CoBS-SB.pdf – Downloaded 40 times – 4 MB

Download “The-work-of-the-Turning-Tides-Partnership-and-LOVEmyBEACH.pdf”The-work-of-the-Turning-Tides-Partnership-and-LOVEmyBEACH.pdf – Downloaded 41 times – 3 MB

Download “Marine-Natural-Capital-on-the-Cumbria-Solway.pdf”Marine-Natural-Capital-on-the-Cumbria-Solway.pdf – Downloaded 39 times – 4 MB

Download “Mersey-Estuary-Action-Planning-Mersey-Gateway-Environmental-Trust.pdf”Mersey-Estuary-Action-Planning-Mersey-Gateway-Environmental-Trust.pdf – Downloaded 35 times – 2 MB

Download “Mersey-Estuary-Action-Planning-Mersey-Rivers-Trust.pdf”Mersey-Estuary-Action-Planning-Mersey-Rivers-Trust.pdf – Downloaded 35 times – 715 KB

Download “Dee-Estuary-Coastal-Coordination-Project.pdf”Dee-Estuary-Coastal-Coordination-Project.pdf – Downloaded 43 times – 555 KB

Download “Workshop-Questions.pdf”Workshop-Questions.pdf – Downloaded 37 times – 105 KB

Download “MoRPH-Estuaries-3Cs-project.pdf”MoRPH-Estuaries-3Cs-project.pdf – Downloaded 37 times – 79 KB

*Championing Coastal Coordination (3Cs) is an Environment Agency initiative with support from Natural England, the Marine Management Organisation and the Association of Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authorities. It is a collaboration seeking to explore how to enhance and progress coordination for coastal sustainability and resilience in England. 


Working with the North West’s Coastal Groups

NWCF provides the secretariat for two of the North West’s coastal groups – Liverpool Bay Coastal Sub-group and the North West and North Wales Coastal Sub-group (the latter until Dec 2013). We also have a seat on the North West and North Wales Coastal Sub-group and the Northern Coastal Sub-group. In July 2013 we helped to organise the inaugural annual conference of the North West and North Wales Coastal Group: North West and North Wales Coastal Management 2013.

In 2023 we have been working with the North West & North Wales Coastal Group and its flagship project Our Future Coast to deliver a major regional conference: Climate Change on the North West Coast exploring the challenges facing the North West’s coastal communities and working with nature to adapt to coastal change. The conference took place in Grange over Sands on 29th and 30th March 2023 and featured, as well as the launch of Our Future Coast, the announcement of the winners of NW ACE 2023. It was attended by 125 delegates from across the North West and beyond and feedback received so far has been excellent. Our input to the conference organisation and NWACE was again funded through Championing Coastal Coordination funding and is part of the current 3Cs project work being undertaken by NWCF within the region. 

Irish Sea Maritime Forum

The North West Coastal Forum has been promoting working at Irish Sea level with partners such as Liverpool University for many years. In 2011 we assisted with delivery of 2 stakeholder workshops exploring transboundary planning issues across the Irish Sea and  have since provided a joint secretariat for the Irish Sea Maritime Forum which was launched in June 2012 at Titanic Belfast. For more information see the project page link on the left or

 Local Coastal Partnerships

The North West Coastal Forum supports coastal partnerships around the North West. PISCES – the Partnership of Irish Sea Coast and Estuary Strategies – includes all the North West’s coastal partnerships and our two coastal Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty and PISCES operates as a sub-group of the Coastal Forum. The Chair of PISCES, Susannah Bleakley of Morecambe Bay Partnership, sits on the Coastal Forum Board to ensure good local issues can be brought to the Board for consideration. PISCES includes the Wirral Coastal Partnership, Duddon Estuary Partnership, Morecambe Bay Partnership, Ravenglass Coastal Partnership, Sefton Coast Partnership and Solway Firth Partnership together with the Arnside/Silverdale and Solway Coast AONBs.

Coastal Partnerships Network

NWCF also actively supports the work of the Coastal Partnerships Network (CPN) – a national grouping of over 50 local coastal partnerships.

The Coastal Partnerships Network (CPN) is a not for profit umbrella body that exists to encourage the exchange of information and debate between Coastal Partnership Officers representing the local coastal partnerships around the English coast. CPN aims to establish links with other coastal stakeholders, to facilitate a more joined up approach to the management of coastal areas and to represent Coastal Partnership interests at national and European levels.

NWCF is represnted on the CPN Committee. See for more information.