Rotting quay wall at risk of collapse rebuilt without planning permission

<img src="https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/bNtfV1to41lDnrfTaiwcDg–/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjt3PTk2MDtoPTY0MDtjZj13ZWJw/https://media.zenfs.com/en/daily_echo_904/e2117f55a3887dffdb52e5118f02c59e&quot; alt="Part of a quay wall at Eling Wharf has been rebuilt after it was found to be in imminent danger of collapse. Picture: Savills <i>(Image: Savills)
Part of a quay wall at Eling Wharf has been rebuilt after it was found to be in imminent danger of collapse. Picture: Savills (Image: Savills)

A ROTTING quay wall has been rebuilt without planning permission after it was found to be at risk of suffering a “catastrophic” collapse.

Associated British Ports (ABP) carried out the work at Eling Quay, Totton, amid fears the condition of the timber supports presented a “clear and imminent” danger to public safety.

The scheme involved an L-shaped section of the quay near the eastern end of Eling Creek, which empties into the River Test.

Daily Echo: Part of a quay wall at Eling Wharf has been rebuilt after it was found to be in imminent danger of collapse
Daily Echo: Part of a quay wall at Eling Wharf has been rebuilt after it was found to be in imminent danger of collapse

Part of a quay wall at Eling Wharf has been rebuilt after it was found to be in imminent danger of collapse (Image: Savills)

ABP has now submitted a retrospective application to New Forest District Council.

The application says: “A report commissioned by ABP identified that the condition of the wall was close to catastrophic failure, with many of the timbers rotten.

“ABP was keen to ensure the site is properly defended from the Test, and that any potential health and safety risks arising from the poor state of the wall were addressed as quickly as possible.

“There was a clear and imminent risk to public safety should the wall have collapsed.

“Therefore, the decision was made by ABP to undertake the works immediately and seek retrospective permission.”

The application says the scheme, which involved an 85m section of quay, was necessary to remove the “substantial” risks associated with the state of the rotting timber.

Daily Echo: The new-look quay wall at Eling Wharf
Daily Echo: The new-look quay wall at Eling Wharf

The new-look quay wall at Eling Wharf (Image: Savills)

Eling Wharf comprises a mixture of commercial buildings, warehousing and container storage areas.

As reported in the Daily Echo, an exclusion zone was set up around part of the 40-acre site in 2021 amid fears over the stability of the wall.

People sailing in and out of Eling Creek were warned to stay at least five metres away from the quay.

Speaking at the time ABP said: “As a precaution we have issued a Notice to Mariners with a small exclusion zone around the section needing the most attention.

“This is aimed at keeping kayakers, paddleboarders and others using the water a safe distance from the wall.”

Daily Echo: An aerial view of Eling Wharf.
Daily Echo: An aerial view of Eling Wharf.

An aerial view of Eling Wharf. (Image: Martini archive)

A heritage statement that accompanies the application refers to the decision to replace a “poorly preserved” wooden wall with metal sheet piling that would appear similar when viewed from across the creek.

It describes the change in the view as “negligible”.

Eling Wharf was formerly owned by Burt Boulton Holdings, which spent years developing a “once in a lifetime” plan to transform the site by building 350 homes, plus shops and businesses.

BBH’s scheme would have created hundreds of jobs but in 2018 the site was sold to ABP for almost £14m.

Published by anthonyhayble

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