The Holderness coastline is known to be one of the most rapidly retreating coastal regions in Europe. Previous studies on the recession of this coastline have often concentrated on providing a single annual value for the whole coast or for large subdivisions of it; however, relatively little attention has been given to the overall spatial and temporal variability. This paper summarizes and critically appraises the work previously undertaken in this region, presents the results of the former recession rate investigations and displays new interpretations of the data. This assessment found there to be a knowledge gap relating to the processes involved in the recession of this coastline, particularly with regard to frequency of high recession events, further knowledge of which could assist in the planning of the region. It is concluded that many of the former investigations are inadequate by today's standards, because of either the methods employed or the manner in which the results are displayed. Significant steps in gathering high-quality data relating to the erosion of this coastline have been made by the East Riding of Yorkshire Council with the initiation of their Erosion Post monitoring scheme and more recently by their dGPS monitoring. However, if further advancement is to be made in the understanding of the erosion of this region, this work will need to be supplemented with geomorphological monitoring of the cliff line, which will further resolve the processes occurring and aid the production of predictive models. These geomorphological data could be obtained through employment of traditional methods as well as new techniques such as laser scanning or digital photogrammetry.
A table giving the magnitude and variability in recession at each Erosion Post location and graphs showing the actual annual variations for each Erosion Post, calculated using a filtered version of the Erosion Post dataset, are available at http://www.geolsoc.org.uk/sup18345.