The Port Authority have identified the Bayhead estuary and Cromwell Street Quay, which runs alongside the marina, as an area for improvement. These proposals are at the initial concept stage and will be subject to further development over the coming year.

There is a need for:

  • Facilities and features around the harbour which are attractive to visitors and locals alike
  • A more publicly accessible area of the harbour where there are fewer commercial operational activities
  • Improved harbour security at sensitive occasions and times
  • A modern marina facilities building (showers, toilets, etc.) for visiting boats
  • Improvement in the landscaping, signage, and access to and from the quay
  • A fixed connection with Cromwell Street Quay to Lews Castle and its landscaped grounds

The proposal is to construct a dam across the upper inner harbour incorporating a footway to the Castle Grounds, thus forming a small tidal lagoon in the Bayhead estuary. It will include a fish pass and a tidal lock to allow small vessels to enter and exit.

The existing quayside will be landscaped more as a public space, incorporating multi-functional facilities to serve the visitor market. The project will also reduce some of the more imposing physical barriers between the quay and the town centre. This could include replacing the existing concrete wall with decorative fencing, gates and handrails, offering a more attractive feature, whilst also improving security of the harbour area.

This project will have a transformational impact, allowing locals and visitors to access the Castle and its grounds more easily from the town. The removal of barriers and landscape improvements will encourage people to walk around the harbour and town, improving footfall to local businesses.

The Bayhead area will be made more attractive as the dam will ensure that there is always water in the bay. This will allow pontoons to be installed for water-based activities such as marine leisure, model boating, kayak training and children’s water sports.

It is not the intention to develop the area for retail, however, the incorporation of a covered area may allow market stalls, “pop-up” events and retail, music events, etc. Together these projects will facilitate the regeneration of the Cromwell Street Quay area.

Timescale: The proposals are at an early stage. The next step will be a public consultation exercise.