Some 500 homes and businesses in Whitby would be at higher risk of flooding or coastal erosion unless there is major capital investment. This was the estimation of a more detailed Report in 2009, which also endorsed the findings of the 2002 Report.
The ‘major capital investment’ is needed to improve the condition of our piers. Yet more ‘major investment’ would be needed within 20 years, to cope with rising sea levels and more extreme weather events.
The most recent Report says: ‘If the structures receive no capital investment, they will continue to erode, collapse and disintegrate until only the ruins remain. This will expose the town and estuary to increased wave and tide conditions… …In order to improve the condition and overtopping performance of these ancient structures into the future a major capital investment is required.’ (Whitby Coastal Strategy: Further Investigations at Whitby Harbour. Royal Haskoning, 2009)
In April 2014 the Environment Agency allocated a grant of £4.8million towards the initial refurbishment of the piers. Scarborough Borough Council was required to contribute £3.7 million, but has yet to find the funding. SBC’s planned expenditure on capital development projects 2016 to 2020 does NOT include the £3.7 million needed for Whitby Piers.