Annalong harbour at risk due to under investment, campaigners claim
A PETITION has been launched to save a picturesque Co Down harbour from collapsing and falling into the sea.
The call for Newry, Mourne and Down District Council to act was made by a resident who claimed there was “clear neglect” of the harbour’s structure in recent years.
Anne Teggarty-Steele warned that unless immediate work takes place at the harbour it has the potential to become a hazard.
Saying she spoke for many residents of the village, she revealed that an online petition already had the support of more than 1,200 people.
Ms Teggarty-Steele and her father Harry Teggarty have set up a Facebook page ‘Annalong Harbour Watch’.
“We are at crisis point, that’s it, plain and simple. The harbour is made of hand-carved pieces of stone and some of these have fallen entirely away while others are on the verge of sinking,” she told The Mourne Observer.
“There are massive cracks running up the walls, craters where we are supposed to walk and if the pier takes another pounding in a bad storm I am pretty sure the structure itself will give in and crash into the tide,” she said.
“It is in such a sorry state and we cannot understand why this is allowed to deteriorate even more.”
The campaign has also been backed by DUP councillor Glyn Hanna and independent unionist Henry Reilly who have urged the council to dip into emergency funds to carry out repairs.
A spokesman for the council said it had been monitoring the condition of Annalong harbour wall for a number of years and while there are indications of movement there was no evidence of structural instability.
“Concerns were raised recently and the council has carried out a visual inspection and has requested a further visit by the structural engineers to confirm if there has been any change to previous reports on structural stability,” he said.
“Annalong harbour requires significant investment in a number of projects, which need to be completed as a package of works. The council will continue to assess opportunities for external funding for these projects.”