BLUEPRINTS for a planned £36 million sea defence scheme in Clacton and Holland-on-Sea have been given the green light by council planners.

The scheme will prevent 400 homes from collapsing into the sea over the next 20 years.

The Tendring Council project has already been given the go-ahead by the Environment Agency, which is paying £27million towards the works, but it needed formal planning permission.

Plans were unanimously approved by the council’s planning committee.

Following the decision, council environment boss Nick Turner, praised the council for getting the ball rolling by putting up £3million for the scheme, which was then matched by Essex County Council.

“I am over the moon with the decision – I’m very pleased we are at this stage,” he said.

“To get the plans rubber-stamped is another big part of the jigsaw.

“We will now go out to tender for project management by the end of this week and will then go out to tender for contractors next week.”

“We will leave behind us a legacy – we have laid the foundations for the next 100 years,” he added.