Work has to begun on a new £5m investment in Portsmouth’s International Port.
As part of the work, a 110 -year-old unused jetty will be demolished to make space to allow larger ships into dock at the port.
The disused structure, known as the ‘Floating Dock Jetty’, is situated at the eastern end of the port and will be demolished by European marine contractor’s Herbosch-Kiere.
Work on the jetty begun earlier this month, with the whole dock scheduled to be levelled by the end of the year.
Despite its name, the jetty is anything but floating because it is made of deep-set cast iron piles that are 12 feet in diameter.
Each is filled with concrete and has a heavy deck of steel and concrete placed on top.
Port manager at Portsmouth International Port, Martin Putman said: ‘Times have changed since the jetty was constructed more than a hundred years ago.
‘It hasn’t been actively used for more than a decade.
‘In terms of 21st century shipping it is just getting in the way – especially as we look to get larger modern ships to dock here.’
Each element of the dock will be removed by engineers from Herbosch-Kiere, broken down, then recycled.
When the structure has been removed the seabed will be dredged to the navigational level that is nine metres below chart datum.
The project is part of continued investment at Portsmouth International Port as it adapts to meet the challenges of a changing maritime industry.
‘By demolishing the ageing structure we are able to remove a navigational hazard,’ added Mr Putman.
‘Because of the investment we will be able to make movements in the port safer.
‘And we will be able to offer longer ships with deeper drafts the convenience of using this excellent facility just off the English Channel.’
The port has recently completed other infrastructure projects to help it maintain its reputation for flexible service.
The port has more ferry routes to the continent than any other UK port, with daily crossings to France, Spain and the Channel Islands.
With the floating jetty now being demolished, the port looks to extend the number of crossings it can offer.
For further information on the £5m investment, please call 01256 631 696.