The cost of demolishing the Herne Bay pier pavilion has risen dramatically because much higher quantities of asbestos than expected have been discovered in the building. The city council had originally budgeted £425,000 but the latest structural survey has revealed the full extent of extra work needed.
Now the lowest acceptable tender from a specialist demolition company is nearly £668,000 – £243,000 more than expected. The new figures were revealed to members of the council executive on Thursday which agreed to fund the extra cost. Cllr Peter Vickery-Jones said:
“This is a huge increase but there is no alternative. We have to find the money because we can’t leave the building as it is.”
Cllr Peter Lee added:
“The pier is a key part of Herne Bay’s regeneration and investment in the town. But it will enable its replacement with something more for tourists which will provide an income for the Pier Trust.”
Pier Trust chairman Julian Jennings told the executive he hoped there would not be any delays because it wanted the pier platform to be available for summer activities in 2012.
The contract is now expected to last 24 weeks and work is expected to start in the autumn when the sports facilities, currently housed in the pavilion, are transferred to a new sports centre at Herne Bay High School.
HB Gazette 23rd Jun 2011