About Marine Civil Engineering at AWA

About Marine Civil Engineering at AWA

In 2020, AWA acquired Mayhew Callum, a local engineering consultancy business that had been operating since 1988, providing civil design services with specialist knowledge of marine and coastal projects. This has allowed AWA to establish itself firmly in the marine engineering sector, building on its wide range of projects.

The AWA team has experience working around ports and harbours and our marine civil engineers have worked on plenty of structures on the coastline such as sea defences.

Just like any project on land, structures built on or around water require the insight of a structural engineer, however, the harsh marine environments provide a unique challenge.

AWAs marine engineers provide an analysis and design service for marinas, dry docks, seawalls, breakwaters and other waterfront structures. Within this, they consider extreme wave impact, high wind forces, tides, currents, dynamic loading, and corrosion, which greatly affect the performance and stability of the structures. Our Principal Marine Engineer Ed Ellis explains more about the role:

A conversation with AWAs Marine Structural Engineer, Ed Ellis

“I’ve been designing and overseeing the construction of marine structures for 14 years now. I’m also a qualified commercial diver so carry out underwater inspections too.

“Factoring in the environment is the tricky bit when it comes to marine and maritime civil engineering, structures have to be approached differently to any other project because they’re subject to far harsher conditions. This affects not only in the way they are designed but in the way we think about how the structure can be built and maintained.

“I’ve always wanted to work in marine civil engineering. It’s not a specialism many people choose to go into in the UK and I’m always surprised by that with us being an island. With global warming, there’s a huge role that marine and maritime civil engineers will play in the future for the protection of the land and ensuring that the structures remain intact.

“Clients who contact us for marine projects could be councils, marinas or property management companies. Generally, the first thing we will do is visit the site because where the work is often specialist, sometimes people don’t know what they’re dealing with or what they need.

“A site visit doesn’t always require diving if it’s low tide or visible from a boat but if a substantial portion of the structure is submerged, a dive survey may be the best way to assess the structure, it could be me diving or we can get a contractor in. All the contractors we work with at AWA are specialists in the field which is really important to us working safely and efficiently.

“A lot of our work tends to be focused around breakwaters and seawalls because people are starting to get concerned about rising water levels and the possibility of damage to adjacent structures and properties. These projects involve looking at the forecasted predictions for the next 50 to 100+ years to make them work effectively in the long term.

“It can be quite frightening when you look at the predictions as the changes are quite significant. The south coast is predicted to be between 1.2m and 1.6m by the year 2125.

“AWA has got marine and maritime projects all over the UK which is fantastic. We’re in demand for this area of work due to our experience and knowledge in the field”.

If you have a marine or maritime query, call 01794 524447 or email us at

Yarmouth Pier Refurbishment

Client: Yarmouth Harbour Commission
Value: £1m

Major refurbishment works on the UK’s longest wooden pier, with the installation of 50 piles, new pierhead structure, and replacement decking.

RNLI Selsey Lifeboat Station

Client: RNLI
Value: £1.7m
Architect: Studio Four Architects

Boathouses for all-weather and inshore lifeboats, launching rigs, crew facilities, visitor educational areas as well as a souvenir shop, replacing the 30 year old boathouse and pier.

Portland Marina Dry Stack

Client: Boatfolk

Steel framed 19m high and 84m long structure, allowing the dry storage of 132 boats.

Why choose AWA Engineers

AWA is a structural engineering and civil engineering consultancy established in 1987, with a hard-won but deserved reputation for delivering excellence in our profession.

Our philosophy is simple: we put people first. This has resulted in a high number of repeat clients and an impressive track record of successful award-winning projects. We are proud to be professional, and approachable; we believe this makes us the ideal partner for your project.

AWA has chartered engineers in our offices located in Romsey, Hampshire and Bath, Somerset. We deliver services to clients across the South, South East and South West.

Our team includes both chartered structural engineers and chartered civil engineers committed to continuous professional development ensuring you benefit from up to date industry expertise, whatever your project entails.

Contact us today

To find out more about how AWA can help with your project, get in touch today. Call 01794 524447 (Romsey) or 01225 251498 (Bath)  to speak to a member of our team. Alternatively, email and one of the team will be in touch.

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