Work to finalise piers repairs 'well underway'

The piers pictured during the recent tidal surge and inset, damage to the east pier.
The piers pictured during the recent tidal surge and inset, damage to the east pier.

​​Work is now “well underway” to finalise designs and establish final costs for vital repair work to Whitby’s crumbling piers.

Speaking about the restoration of the piers at this week’s borough council cabinet meeting, leader Derek Bastiman said officers have met with consultants this week to go through the progress on the scheme.

Cllr Joe Plant said that he was pleased to see from the forward plan that a report on Whitby’s piers will now be brought before the cabinet later this year, in September.

Outlining progress to date, cabinet member for harbours and flood protection, Cllr Mike Cockerill said: “Phase one of the project has now started and this will see detailed investigation undertaken to allow work specification to be prepared and costed.

“That costing will then be independently validated. Applications will be made to secure any permissions that are required to allow phase two - the actual work on the piers to be carried out.”

He added: “All these tasks are due to be completed in time to bring a report to cabinet in September. In the meantime, officers, colleagues and I will do our work to secure further external funding.

“I continue to be confident that the work will proceed.”

Cllr Bastiman said he wanted Cllr Cockerill’s views about the piers: “Can I ask with your experience and the experience of your colleagues you are working with are you relatively comfortable that the pier is in a safe structure at this moment in time?”

Cllr Cockerill replied: “Yes I am. It’s not 100% perfect, you only need to look at it to see that there are some areas where blocks have shifted.

“But when you consider a few weeks ago how it stood up to the huge tidal surge, to me that gives great confidence that it’s still got some years left. Providing we don’t wait too long – we are looking at starting the work next year - it will stand up.”

Cllr Bastiman added: “You have every confidence in the experts that you’re dealing with?” Cllr Cockerill replied: “I have every confidence in our own staff and I have every confidence in the consultants that we are engaged with.”