Weymouth's harbour needs 'lasting solution' for Channel Island ferries

Substantial works costing in the region of £2m are needed to fix a harbour in Dorset, according to Weymouth & Portland Borough Council.

Condor Ferries, which sails from Dorset to the Channel Islands, is currently leaving from Poole because the Weymouth berth is unstable.

A council spokesman said remedial works to the berth had been unsuccessful.

It is now looking at a "lasting solution" to "meet the business needs of the ferry operator by April 2013".

'Comprehensively redevelop'

The instability is thought to have been caused by a phenomenon in the harbour called scour.

Councillor Ian Roebuck said: "Scour is a common occurrence in harbours and is caused by natural processes such as tides, currents and changes in the seabed, as well as by boats and other harbour uses.

"The ferry berths at the harbour are over 80 years old and have always needed considerable ongoing maintenance by the council to ensure they are fit for purpose for the vessels we welcome and want to use the harbour.

"A major repair was carried out in 2002 and we are now looking at bringing forward our long-term aspiration to comprehensively redevelop the ferry berth area."

Condor said passengers with existing bookings would be notified in writing of changes to their journeys and services would continue to sail from Poole throughout the summer.

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