New marina planned for Bristol harbour with space for 34 boats and wildlife habitats
Residents living nearby have warned that the reed beds could attract lots of litter and be difficult to clear up
A new marina is planned for Bristol’s harbour with space for 34 boats as well as wildlife habitats. The new moorings will be created at Capricorn Quay, opposite the SS Great Britain, with reed beds, washrooms and a “haven for birds”.
But residents living nearby have warned that the reed beds could attract lots of litter and be difficult to clear up. They also raised concerns about future boat dwellers causing noise and pollution near where they live in the apartments at Capricorn Place.
Bristol City Council is planning to spend £480,000 on the new moorings at Capricorn Quay, with a grant from the West of England Combined Authority. The cabinet approved the decision during a public meeting on Tuesday, March 7.
Deputy mayor Craig Cheney said: “As part of improving facilities and updating the harbour, making it financially sustainable, we have been progressing a project to add pontoons to the harbour, with an expected 32 new moorings. It would also include new washroom facilities too.
“By installing new reed beds, we’ll create approximately 1,000 square metres of habitat that as an ecosystem will improve water quality, support stronger fish stocks and provide a haven for birds. Residents and visitors will experience an enhanced waterfront with visible greenery and more contact with nature.”
But the plans were not welcomed by local residents, with one warning the moorings could become the harbour’s “biggest eyesore and litter dump”. Others called for the new pontoon to be created elsewhere in the harbour, and claimed the habitat plan was “greenwashing”.
During the cabinet meeting, Kevin Slade said: “Creating Bristol harbour’s biggest eyesore and litter dump is the inevitable result of this hurried proposal, especially as there is no funding in place to allow for the ongoing cost of litter removal and maintenance. This reed bed structure will be placed directly below a 50-metre stretch of the busiest part of the harbourside walkway, with no means of access for litter removal.”
Fraser Bridgeford, chair of Capricorn Place residents’ association, added: “This has overwhelmingly been rejected by residents. The pollution and noise adjacent to our homes will be unacceptable. This is the wrong location for this marina.
“It isn’t about nature or biodiversity, it’s about money and getting more into the council’s coffers at the expense of residents. It’s greenwashing. A more suitable location needs to be found for this marina.”