Thanet District Council plans to open the Viking Bay lift in Broadstairs next month (week commencing 21 June).
Work costing an estimated £17,000, is set to start next week May and is anticipated to bring the lift back into operational use. New procedures are being put in place to open and close the lift each day and to respond to any issues that occur during its operation.
The council has identified a need to invest a further £45,000 which could be sufficient to help keep the lift, constructed in 2000, functioning over the next five years and compliant with modern equalities legislation.
It was announced in April that surveys would be carried out on the lifts at Viking Bay and Ramsgate’s Eastcliff with a view to bringing them both back into operation following an outcry when ‘permanently shut’ notices were placed on both lifts at the start of that month.
A report about the future of the lifts will be put before the June 17 meeting of Thanet council Cabinet members.
The situation with the Grade II listed Eastcliff lift in Ramsgate, which dates back to 1912, has proven more complex, says the council. Issues with the operation of the doors are suspected to be the result of movement in the supporting structure, and further investigation is underway.
The council has already spent £48,000 on repairs to the Eastcliff lift, following the theft of lead from its roof last year. This was funded by an insurance claim. Significant further expenditure may now be needed to bring it back into working order.
Cabinet member for Operational Services, Cllr Steve Albon, said: “I’m delighted that we are able to report good progress at Viking Bay, as I know that this lift is highly valued by the community, including wheelchair users.
“The situation with the Eastcliff lift is more difficult and I am disappointed about that, as I know local people will be too. A report will come to Cabinet in June setting out the issues with both lifts and exploring potential ways forward.”