Coastal Survey Licences

We provide permissions for activities that physically interact with the nearshore and seabed of tidal rivers, estuaries and harbours within our ownership.

Coastal Survey Licences provide permission to undertake a range of small scale commercial survey activities, interfering with the foreshore or seabed, usually for period of up to 12 months.

These Licences, otherwise known as Small Works Consents, are often a prerequisite to commercial works being undertaken.

To find out which areas of foreshore we own, please use our Foreshore and Estuary Ownership Map.

For survey activity taking place offshore, please take a look at our Seabed Survey Licence page.


  • To apply for a Coastal Survey Licence, please get in touch with our coastal managing agents for the relevant location, using our Agent Finder.  
  • In your application, please provide details of the specific location of interest, the purpose of your survey or works, and your proposed timescales.
  • Please be aware that in order to process your application, we may need to undertake detailed conflict checks, so please allow sufficient time for your application to be processed and any conditions to be discharged before you commence the proposed activity.

 Application fees

  • Fees are assessed on a commercial basis and depend on the type and scale of the project. An administrative charge will also be applied. Our managing agents will be able to advise on costs, based on the information you provide.

 Additional consents

  • In addition to a Coastal Survey Licence, you may also require other consents from statutory authorities, such as marine licences from the Marine Management Organisation, Natural Resource Wales or the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs for Northern Ireland, and/or permissions from the Environment Agency or a Harbour Authority.

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