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Jubilee clock tower safety concerns

Published Wednesday 24 February, 2021
Last updated on Thursday 25 February, 2021

The iconic clock tower in Sheerness High Street is being fenced off due to safety concerns about the structure.

As part of plans to improve the town centre, Swale Borough Council commissioned an inspection of the listed clock tower before planned repainting takes place. This was looking at the condition of the structure, clock faces and internal mechanisms to highlight any areas where work may be needed.

During the inspection, several serious structural defects and material fractures were found internally and externally, including some areas towards the top of the tower with several fractures.

As a result of this, the council has taken the decision to close off the immediate area to protect the public from the possibility of falling material.

Cllr Monique Bonney, cabinet member for economy and property at the council said:

“We want to improve our town centres for local people and visitors, and the clock tower is a key landmark in Sheerness.

“We wanted to give it a refresh with new paint as part of our plans, but the inspection has highlighted that the legacy of decades of poor repairs and maintenance has resulted in serious structural issues, which will now require major work.

“We are speaking to specialist restorers to determine the extent of the repairs, cost and timings. There is the possibility the structure may have to be removed to be properly repaired, restored, and then reinstated.

“We will of course keep local people and the town council updated on the progress.”