Long-term future for lake safe after major rebuild

PUBLISHED: 09:00 28 October 2015

Jo Tasker - Lake Ranger, with Gareth Withers from North Somerset Council, Graham Marshall - site supervisor, Stephanie Fitch art coordinater, Joe Norman - Marlens chairman, with fellow Marlen Alan WIlson.

Jo Tasker - Lake Ranger, with Gareth Withers from North Somerset Council, Graham Marshall - site supervisor, Stephanie Fitch art coordinater, Joe Norman - Marlens chairman, with fellow Marlen Alan WIlson.

Archant

Clevedon’s Marine Lake has reopened to the public following its £850,000 refurbishment.

Work to the lake has been ongoing since March and has included raising the sea wall, installing a larger sluice to allow it to empty more quickly and creating a new splash play area for children.

Further improvements to the lake are planned including building lakeside changing rooms, toilet facilities, and a new boat store.

The majority of the funding for the project came from a Heritage Lottery Fund grant, with MARLENS, the charity which maintains and promotes the lake, Clevedon Town Council and North Somerset Council also providing financial help.

Councillor Peter Bryant, North Somerset’s executive member for open spaces, said: “Friday’s reopening (of Marine Lake) to the public was the culmination of a project which has been more than three years in the making.

“It will secure the long-term future of this historic landmark and shows what can be achieved by local organisations and people working together.”

North Somerset Council has also agreed to lease the lake to MARLENS for the next 50 years which will see the charity take responsibility for all routine repairs and maintenance once all of the work is complete.

The east end of the lake is still being worked on by contractors, Dyer & Butler, but the chairman of MARLENS is ‘delighted’ the rest of the facility is back in public use.

Chairman Joe Norman said: “We won’t actually take it on until the whole job is finished, which should be between the middle to the end of November.

“We are delighted to have the lake back in use and are looking forward to seeing much more activity in it.”

Marine Lake will receive an official reopening in April as a way of celebrating the anniversary of its opening in 1929.

An anthology featuring old photos, poems, memories and stories about the lake is also being collated and it is hoped to be completed to coincide with this anniversary.

Writers of all ages can submit their stories of up to 500 words, with winning entries being included in the final collection which will eventually end up at the British Library in London and Bodleian Library at Oxford University.

Participation in the competition is free and entries can be submitted here or through Clevedon Community Bookshop in Copse Road.

The deadline for entries has been extended until December 31.


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