Work to repair Clacton’s 103-year-old Venetian Bridge will start at the end of the month.
Tendring District Council (TDC) has appointed Prestec and Richard Jackson as the contractors for the £355,000 project at Pier Gap which should be completed by the spring next year.
The scheme will involve concrete repairs using traditional methods with hand applied mortars and anti-carbonation coatings. The lower exposed section of beams will also need to be completely externally and internally reformed.
The bridge’s surfacing will be removed and replaced with a new waterproof surface which will withstand the elements.
As well as this, new drainage systems will be installed to discharge away into the existing water drainage system.
Mick Skeels, TDC’s Cabinet Member for Tourism and Leisure, said he is well aware that there has been some frustration over the length of time this project has taken to get to this stage.
“It is a significant project involving an iconic landmark on Clacton seafront and we had to make sure that we opted for the right way forward and a programme of work that would stand the test of time,” he added.
“The contractors will begin on site on October 30 and the aim is to have everything completed by the start of next season.”
A small part of the structure first showed signs of distress in July 2014 and investigations have taken place since to determine the full extent of the corrosion to the internal structure.
TDC appointed engineering consultants for expert advice and the initial investigations revealed the top deck of the bridge was no longer waterproof.
This had resulted in moisture and corrosive salts getting into the structure over a long period of time and corroding the reinforcements.
The decision to go ahead with the project was made at a meeting of TDC’s Cabinet in September.