‘Forced shut-down risk’ to Wemyss Bay delay, Bute meeting told

Wemyss Bay pier will be closed for 16 weeks for major repairs in the spring of 2014, with Rothesay ferry services diverted to and from Gourock as a result.
Wemyss Bay pier will be closed for 16 weeks for major repairs in the spring of 2014, with Rothesay ferry services diverted to and from Gourock as a result.

Delaying major repairs to the ferry terminal at Wemyss Bay was a risk not worth taking, according to the pier’s owners.

Brian Sydney from Caledonian Maritime Assets Ltd told Bute Community Council that the company had considered the best time to carry out the work, which will take place over a 16-week period, beginning in late winter or early spring next year.

Answering local councillor Robert Macintyre, who asked if the work could be delayed until October 2015, Mr Sydney said: “If we delayed until October there is a risk that the fendering system deteriorates even more over the current winter: there is a chance that we will be unable to keep maintaining it, and the risk is of a forced shut down.

“We looked at doing the work over a longer period, using weekends and nightshifts and shorter-term shutdowns, but it quickly became clear that the best option, in terms of the certainty of how long the work would last, was complete closure.

“There was a huge amount of risk associated with a partial shutdown, and nightshift working was very quickly shut down to us as an option because of the proximity of housing to the pier.”

* More on this story in the new issue of The Buteman - on sale from Thursday, November 27.