Council’s piers plans progress

The borough council plans to begin work on saving Whitby’s iconic piers in July 2017, it was revealed this week.

The piers are in urgent need of work, and could potentially fail at any moment, a scenario which would be catastrophic for the town.

Councillor Joe Plant said: “The council takes the importance of Whitby’s piers very seriously.

“We think it is therefore important to let residents and visitors know our intentions for this project and that we have already been working hard to develop a detailed project plan.

“While it won’t be a quick process as we are still a couple of years away from starting work on site, the council is committed to adopting a proactive step by step approach to ensure all aspects of the project are delivered effectively and efficiently.”

The council’s long term aim, if all of the necessary funding is secured, is to start theimprovement works in July 2017 with a projected completion date of October 2018.

The sum of £4.812m has been secured in Environment Agency funding towards a scheme, currently estimated to cost £8.622m, to carry out works to secure the structures.

The proposed improvement works will involve stabilising the external sandstone facing blocks, filling in any gaps using grout suitable for the marine environment and repairs to the top surface of the piers to prevent water ingress during wave overtopping in rough seas.

Also included will be the installation of access barriers at the entrance of both piers and to the entrance of the west pier extension access bridge, installation of a flood gate at the Battery Parade slipway, installation of warning signs at the access gates and flood gate locations and the implementation of new operational procedures for the piers.

The council is in the process of appointing Mott McDonald as its consultant to procure, project manage and supervise the works, and the next stage to commence shortly will be to engage a contractor to design, cost and build the scheme.