Nottingham City Council is spending £550,000 on repairs at Colwick Country Park marina due to “significant health and safety risks”.
The repairs are needed to the country park’s ageing pontoons, which are floating, watertight platforms immersed in the water.
They are typically used by open-water swimmers and other people taking part in watersport activities, as well as those with watercraft docked in any one of 224 moorings in the marina.
The pontoons at the park are in need of replacement due to health and safety risks, and the Labour-run authority said if repairs are not done it may lose significant income generated by the marina.
A large portion of income is generated from the marina through the leasing of secure moorings, which cost around £134 per metre in length.
The marina offers other facilities such as waste disposal for boaters, and is also used by Nottinghamshire Fire and Rescue Service, including police search
and rescue, for access to the River Trent for water-based emergencies and
It generates roughly £121,000 in net income to the park.
The council says: “The location of the park sitting alongside the Trent river provided the opportunity to extend the leisure facilities to also include a marina, and soon after the opening of the country park the marina was developed.
“This marina has been under the management of the council for over 40 years and much of its infrastructure has not been replaced since its creation.”
In 2018 a condition survey of the marina took place and work began on a first phase of improvements in January 2020, replacing some pontoons with platforms made from modern material that is less prone to slippage when wet or frozen.
Lighting and fencing will also be replaced.
The council says the marina is only operating at approximately 80 per cent of its capacity and there is a “growing waiting list of mooring requests”.
“Once the pontoons have all be replaced the capacity could be increased,” the council says.
There are now two more phases of work which must be completed, after work stopped during the Covid pandemic.
Council documents add: “The design lifespan of the new pontoons is 25 years, although it is anticipated that due to the location and the water not being salt water this should exceed this lifespan.
“Cleaning of the pontoons are already incorporated into the Colwick Park expenditure costs; the only additional funding would be for annual inspections of £1,200, which can be covered using income from the marina.
“Once all of the pontoons have been replaced the number of boats moored on site can be increased, which will comfortably cover the additional costs for the
“The new structures are modular so any damage and faults can be replaced and repaired by sections rather than effecting the integrity of the whole structure.”
The council’s budget will be impacted initially but the costs will be repaid over a 10 year and 15 year period, and eventually the council will start running the marina at a surplus.
This will result in a contribution to a fund to help pay for future repairs if they arise.