Cones, caissons, concrete blocks - Europe's first offshore breakwater and why it took so long to build it.

A drawing of the first two cones - on the left the second cone is badly damaged.

On Thursday 5 March I shall be giving a presentation to members of the Institute of Civil Engineers on the construction of the Cherbourg breakwater, to which sailing and rowing WSC members are cordially invited. The talk will start at 1830 and refreshments will be served beforehand.

This presentation, illustrated by engineers’ drawings of the period, will focus on the breakwater project as the locus of competing technologies, and explore how different construction methods were attempted or rejected in the context of professional rivalries and the deteriorating international situation towards the end of the Ancien Régime.

Steve Fraser

Submitted on Wednesday, 26th February