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hammerheadcraneRepair works to secure the long-term future of the Cowes Hammerhead Crane are to begin in the new year after funding was received from English Heritage. 

The crane is on English Heritage’s ‘at risk’ register and the organisation has put forward £76,000 to cover the costs of repairs to the famous structure.

The Isle of Wight Council has now appointed a specialist firm to carry out the works, which are due to begin in March 2015. The works will mainly see the corroded sections of steel from the crane’s tower replaced, with all new steel receiving a coat of paint.

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Councillor Paul Fuller, Executive member for planning, said:

“In August the council served an urgent works notice on the owner of the crane.

“With the urgency of the need to carry out repairs, English Heritage put forward the cost of the works, which will begin on 2nd March. In the interim discussions are still ongoing with the Harrison Trust, who are the owners of the site, as to the part they will play in the restoration and long term future of the crane.

“There is no doubt the Cowes Hammerhead Crane is a very iconic landmark on the Island and it is important our heritage is preserved for many years to come.

“I want to thank English Heritage for its decision to cover the cost of the initial repairs. The council is not in a position to fund these types of works itself and I am sure residents and visitors alike are very grateful to English Heritage for enabling these works to begin in the new year.”

Clare Charlesworth, heritage at risk principal advisor for English Heritage, said:

“Our grant towards the repair of the Hammerhead Crane means this nationally important piece of industrial heritage is one step closer to coming off the at risk register.”

Once they are underway, the works are expected to take around 16 weeks to complete.

Photo: Colin Babb

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