The project to stabilise cliffs at Swanage and save the Pines Hotel from collapsing onto the beach has been recognised with a national award.

Engineering firm CH2M and Raymond Brown Construction won the accolade at the Ground Engineering Awards, held to showcase engineering excellence.

Engineers started implementing the scheme in 2005, after it became apparent the hotel was a serious risk from landslides. Even as the team worked the cliffs suffered slides, with a major slip in 2012.

Today, the hotel is safe, and has even put in a planning application to build four tiers of beach huts on the seafront.

CH2M contracts supervisor Clive Evans described the project as the most challenging he's ever worked on.

The site location, which included contaminated soil and active landslides throughout the winter months, compounded these difficulties.

CH2M global tunnels and earth engineering practice director Mark Johnston said: "When a teammate whose 35-year career has focused on coastal construction and landslide stabilisation calls a project his most challenging, that's a testament to the obstacles the team overcame to reach a successful solution here.

"And this recognition from the Ground Engineering Awards is further proof of the excellence that went into this impressive achievement."

The award was given for the best UK Project with Geotechnical Value between £1million and £3million.

If the latest plans for beach huts are approved, the owners of the Pines Hotel, Burlington Road, will build 45 huts on stepped terraces on the cliff face overlooking Swanage Bay.

Access to the huts would be both along the beachfront and via a staircase leading from the hotel, which was constructed during the cliff stabilisation works.

Each tier of huts would feature a viewing terrace in addition to the rooftop terrace area.

The proposed beach huts are 7.9m² and would be supplied with electricity and water. Their design is similar to other huts along the beach, including those beneath the Grand Hotel.