Structural problems for Combe Martin seafront

Joseph Bulmer

Refurbishment plans for Newberry promenade altered after engineer’s report reveals problems.

MORE demolition and less development works are likely to be needed at the seafront parade in Combe Martin.

Engineers have reported structural problems at the popular Newberry promenade, closed for almost six years after becoming dangerous and unsound following years of battering by waves and weather.

The original �150,000 project sought to make safe and revamp the alcoves, walkways and repair the former Combe Martin Museum building, but a report to the parish council before Christmas revealed some plans would have to be changed.

The council has agreed to recommendations by civil engineers Michael Foulkes to demolish all the arches and alcoves apart from those in front of the former museum.

The area would then be tidied, landscaped and planted to make it attractive to locals and visitors.

Parts of the parade area were created more than 100 years ago and engineers have discovered there are now structural faults in the man-made platform, with voids where the fill has been washed away.

The council agreed that in view of the extra costs revealed, planned refurbishment of the museum building would have to wait until funding could be found.

Half of the funding for the scheme was supplied by Devon County Council through a grant from the sale of Exeter airport, with further grants from North Devon Council the Rural Development Programme for England (RDPE.)

The parish council has contacted the county and district councils to confirm the grants are still available following necessary revisions to proposals.

Once agreement is received, the new project is anticipated to take about four months to complete.